By Victoria Buchy, Staff
It’s the last session before Easter break, but these young musicians seem far more focused on the song they’re practicing than chocolate bunnies. With a quick look around their modest rehearsal space, it’s a little piece of rock heaven. An electronic drum kit, keyboard, a couple guitars, a bass and mics come alive at their touch. There’s even a stage-light set with coloured gels and a few posters on the beige walls for ambience and encouragement where not so far away from a guitar tabs instruction chart, the four-faces of KISS stand out like the compass rose of rock’n’roll. I’m in the Sudbury Youth Rocks world.
Operated under the auspices of The John Howard Society of Sudbury, the program uses the rock band to give local teens who are at risk of conflict with the law or who may not otherwise have the chance to learn an instrument the opportunity to play in a band. There are no fees to join and instruments are provided on-site at a space in the city’s downtown mall. Participants get together in a supervised, peer-oriented environment after school to be rock gods in one of three weekly sessions offered all year round.