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FREE Rock concert to honor Lee Ahlin | Arts & Culture

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FREE Rock concert to honor Lee Ahlin
FREE Rock concert to honor Lee Ahlin

This Saturday’s FREE Rock School Blowout will be one to remember as Patel Conservatory’s students and faculty pay tribute to the master of music, Lee Ahlin. Ahlin created Rock School at the Patel Conservatory in 2004, after originally developing a similar program with Paragon Music. He retired from the Straz Center for the Performing Arts’ Patel Conservatory in 2012 after working with hundreds of aspiring musicians.

So at the 2 p.m. show, Ahlin will perform with current Rock School instructors Paul Stoddart and Dean Tidey, Patel Conservatory Staff Accompanist Dee Lynch and former Rock School student Alex Shames.

Due to the popularity of the Patel Conservatory’s Rock School program, two Rock School Blowouts will be held Saturday. Besides the 2 p.m. show, another will kick off at 11 a.m. Both will be held at the Glazer Children’s Museum, 110 West Gasparilla Plaza, Tampa, 33602, in conjunction with the Summer Splash summer camp event. Paragon Music will provide sound.

A professional composer, musician, and educator, Ahlin has written numerous musicals, such as Webb’s City The Musical and Hellenback High with Bill Leavengood.  His works Crossing the Bay and Snow Queen were produced nationally. He has written eight musical adaptations of Shakespeare, 12 pieces for young audiences and five full length musicals. Additionally, Ahlin has taught at Eckerd College, St. Leo College and Shorecrest, besides the Patel Conservatory.

“Lee Ahlin is such a gifted musician, artist and teacher. He has been a joy to work with over the years and always has a home here for any of his projects. He set the bar high for the passion and enthusiasm and commitment that the faculty bring to the classroom,” said Wendy Leigh, Straz Center vice president of education.

Shames, of the Sarasota/Bradenton area, was a student of Ahlin’s for his four years of high school, commuting to and from downtown Tampa every Saturday for classes. Now an FSU student graduating Phi Beta Kappa in May with multiple degrees in music, Shames is involved with several bands in the Tallahassee area. He and his parents, Jerry and Jean Shames, credit Ahlin and the Patel Conservatory for his start in music.

The Patel Conservatory’s Rock School program allows students to join together to create music, under the instruction of fabulous teachers, culminating in a fully produced Rock School Blowout concert. More information is available by calling 813.222.1002 or by visiting www.patelconservatory.org.

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