Child musicians of the Living Room will be seen jamming at S2 waterfront restaurant and Hebe Haven Yacht Club in the new school year. Matt Snelgrove, founder of the Living Room, said 50 of the children had performed at Hebe Haven Yacht Club last month in an event that proved a big success. As well as repeat performances at the club, he is talking with Jim Lewis of Sai Kung Live, host of the S2 gigs on the first Saturday of each month. Dates will be announced.
Matt reckons he can teach children from scratch to play in a band in three days. “We mix experienced kids with newbies and it works out well.”
The Living Room is a sort of combined Christian charity and business. A former youth pastor of The Vine Church, Matt says Christianity is not pushed onto anyone at the studio on Po Tung Road. No religious symbols hang on the walls. The Living Room takes in underprivileged kids and subsidises their music tuition. Any youngster up to 18 years is welcome for lessons in guitar, ukelele or jamming in a band. Currently the Living Room is hosting about 100 children a week for music lessons, Matt said. “Rock School” camps are also arranged and 60 kids will be taking part this summer.
Matt, 36, has lived in Hong Kong 30 years and is now married with three children. The Snelgrove family lives at Pak Kong. He created the Living Room “to teach youngsters how to work together as a band and express themselves through music.” Matt also does life coaching, trying to instill a positive attitude. Band lessons are $250 per person, guitar classes $250 and ukelele $180. Matt will also give private lessons at home for $500 an hour. Parents and members of the public are welcome to see the youthful musicians jamming together on the last day of each Rock School at the Living Room. Traveling from town it is a bit beyond the Esso petrol station on the other side of the road.