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Music Lab at Jefferson Center

Now Enrolling for Spring Semester!

Listen to Jefferson Center's Education & Outreach Coordinator, Jordan Harman discuss The Music Lab on 101.5 The Mountain's Community Spotlight.

Our Spring Semester begins January 8th, and we're accepting enrollment forms now!

For enrollment information, please contact Jordan Harmanjharman[at]jeffcenter[dot]org -- 540.685.2309 ]


  • Open Music Lab - 3:00-7:00pm - Students have access to all of the equipment in the facility to work on their own projects. Assistance from faculty is available as needed.
  • Music Production Class - 5:30-7:00pm - Students will learn about music technology for studio production (recording) as well as live audio (concert) applications. 
  • Performance Band Rehearsal - Time TBD based on students' schedules (typically 5:30-7:00pm) Students will have the opportunity to perform in various bands. The groups rehearse throughout the year and are given performance opportunities throughout the year around the community.
  • Open Music Lab - 3:00-7:00pm - Students have access to all of the equipment in the facility to work on their own projects. Assistance from faculty is available as needed.
  • Songwriting Class - 5:30-7:30pm - Students will learn about the artform of songwriting. This includes the compositional (instrument) elements as well as lyrical elements of songwriting.
  • Open Music Lab - 3:00-7:00pm - Students have access to all of the equipment in the facility to work on their own projects. Assistance from faculty is available as needed.
  • Workshops We have workshops presented by local professionals in the music community. This includes audio engineers, venue promoters, newspaper writers, music store owners, microphone builders, festival promoters, etc. This is really to show the students career opportunities through music
  • This time will be used to work on the students' projects if there is not a workshop for the week.

Music Lab at Jefferson Center represents an innovative model of experiential learning in music business, technology, and performance as an extension of the education area schools provide. We are preparing local youth for future education, careers, and interests in the music and entertainment industries.

We are developing a new model for molding the lives of youth as they grow not only as musicians, engineers, and performers, but as contributing members of our society, knowledgeable consumers, and engaged citizens.

For a membership fee of $125 (for the Spring 2018), teens in grades 6-12 can attend the Music Lab at Jefferson Center's Open Lab program to learn music production & recording, performance skills and music business. Scholarships are available to all students who may require financial assistance. Our facility offers our students access to multitrack recording studios, practice rooms, performance opportunities and what is most unique is the proximity to world-class artists that perform on Shaftman Performance Hall stage as part of Jefferson Center’s incredible programming!

Our outreach programs continue to engage young aspiring musicians from Kindergarten to 12th grade as well as underserved clientele throughout SWVA at schools and organizations around the city with fun, enriching music activities.

After hours and on weekends, our state-of-the-art recording facility is open for commercial use. Click here to find out more about Recording at the Music Lab.

Music Lab's Performance Bands allow students who wish to apply and audition an opportunity to collaborate with their peers, develop their creativity and sound within a band setting, professionally record original music and perform at various festivals and events throughout the region.




Click Here to purchase now!

On March 8th, 2013, Snarky Puppy and a host of special guests convened at the Jefferson Center in Roanoke VA. The dream, envisioned by Michael League, was to record a series of live performances in audio and video that would bring attention and benefit to the ongoing work of Jefferson Center's education programs, such as Music Lab.

As Snarky Puppy set up to record yet another live recording with the audience on the stage, special guests with an interest in supporting the project arrived. Lalah Hathaway, N'Dambi, Lucy Woodward, and Chantae Cann joined Malika Tirolien, Magda Giannikou, Shayna Steele and Tony Scherr in what was to become a legendary live session that celebrates the diversity and joy of live music. With the stunningly beautiful theater as a backdrop, the result is a masterpiece of Jazz, R&B, Gospel, and Blues music captured for the world to fully experience.

Snarky Puppy's Family Dinner will not only captivate, but will benefit Jefferson Center's education programs with every album sold worldwide. Additionally, the DVD features a series of incredible performances from Music Lab students, highlighting the best of what Southwest Virginia's young musicians have to offer, while putting the Star City on the map for world class offerings and arts opportunities.

Snarky Puppy's Family Dinner album sets a standard for future events and recordings. The concept of recording live with a limited audience intimately mixed with the artists is a testament to the creativity and positive energy of Snarky Puppy. Eight tracks appear on the CD, with additional tracks available on the DVD.

Take a tour of Music Lab and see what we're all about!

Music Lab is typically staffed on weekdays from 11am - 7pm. Call us at (540) 685-2309 and schedule your tour today!


(please review Music Lab Expectations & Policies here)

Questions? Contact Jordan Harman, Jefferson Center's Education & Outreach Coordinator at 540-685-2309 or click here to send him an email.