Fishers Music Academy Teaches Students to Find Their Instrument
Writer / Jon Shoulders
Photography Provided by Eli Beaverson & Fishers Music Academy
Music can be a lifelong pursuit. At any age, you might feel the urge to learn how to sing or play an instrument for the first time or maybe dust off that old guitar or piano to shore up your chops.
Fishers Music Academy on South Street was founded by Hoosier native and Carmel High School grad Daniel Gallion to offer private musical instruction and guidance for anyone who might feel such a need.
“Fishers is a very rich musical area, and there are so many students here to go around so it’s great to be a part of it,” Gallion says. “We try to make sure whoever wants to get a music education can come in here and be comfortable and get the most out of their lessons.”
After graduating from Carmel High School where he participated in choir and band, Gallion attended Ball State from 2002 to 2006, studying music education and taking part in several music programs including the Ball State University Singers.
“Ball State had a lot of advisors and mentors who were very good leaders and entrepreneurial in spirit,” he says. “I think some of that rubbed off on me to where I wanted at some point have my own studio for giving private instruction.”
While studying at Ball State, Gallion began offering lessons himself and eventually founded dg Voice Studio for voice, piano and guitar classes. Initially operating the business out of his home, Gallion eventually grew his client base to the point of needing a separate facility and moved into his current space on South Street in the spring of 2017.
“Part of the business plan that I wrote over 10 years ago was to change the name of the business to continue what we’re doing as it grows, to reflect what we offer and who we represent,” explains Gallion. “We decided that Fishers Music Academy was a perfect fit for the next business name.”
The academy consists of several instructors including Gallion, who offer individual lessons for voice, guitar, piano, trombone and drums as well as group lessons for guitar.
“Every student is different, and we have instructors with training and degrees who can guide them where they need to go,” Gallion says. “We don’t have a standard, one-size-fits-all approach to the learning process. Once the individual completes the registration process and commits to lessons, we meet them and get to know their abilities and desires and may choose different methods and curriculums as we go for that specific individual.”
All ages are welcome, and Gallion even offers a Mommy and Me program for infants and toddlers up to age five. Moms, dads or grandparents can bring their little one in for lessons centered on folk and traditional songs and rhymes, and Gallion says the program is based on early childhood research on the development of the brain through music memory and expression.
“It’s important for us to provide lessons to students of all ages — we’ve had kids who were only a few months old, and students in their 90s,” says Gallion, a member of the Indiana Piano Teachers Guild. “One summer we had a 90-year-old lady come in to complete one of her bucket-list desires and did voice lessons. That’s one of the nice things about music — it’s really ageless and anyone on any level can explore it.”
Gallion says his current student enrollment is healthy and continues to grow in all age groups.
“We’ve continued to add instruments as we add instructors with experience in different areas,” he adds. “And, as interest grows in different things, we add lessons at the school.”
Several instructors at Fishers Music Academy are performers themselves, and Gallion says he undergoes an extensive interview process when hiring new staff members as he feels a student’s relationship with his or her instructor is crucial in that student’s musical journey.
“Teacher-student fit is really important because you’re opening up to that person and sharing time, and it can be a nerve-racking experience,” Gallion says. “We try to offer an experience where the teachers are fully engaged and enthusiastic about building a relationship with each of our students and helping kids reach their goals — whether that’s just getting better, experiencing music with another person, doing talent contests or prepping for college.”