Glen Brake is in the planning stages of opening a multi-purpose music centre in Inuvik.
The centre will feature a music school, a retail store, a recording studio, and a performance area.
“There’s a great music culture here. I want to build on what’s already here,” Brake said. “I’m just facilitating opportunities and a safe place for people to take lessons and learn.”
Brake said the school will be open to anyone interested in learning an instrument. Brake didn’t start taking music seriously until he was 31, so he said he believes anyone can learn if they want to.
“It doesn’t matter who you are, or what your background is, you can learn an instrument,” Brake said. “Music can influence and change a person’s life for the better.”
The music centre is still in the planning stages. Brake said he is working on his business plan and submitting applications for funding while holding talks with community leaders and local business owners in order to fill Inuvik’s needs properly and give back to the community.
“I’m an outsider coming in, I don’t want to say ‘look at me, look at what I’m doing’. I want to ask what the community wants, what the community needs,” Brake said. “What does the community need? How can I, as a musician and the future operator of the music school, how can I serve the community?”
Brake’s background is engineering. He studied music and has played in bands all across Canada. This will be Brake’s second music store. He co-owned a store in Chase, BC.
Brake stressed the importance of music in the lives of young people, which is why he is most excited to bring a music school to Inuvik.
“At an early age, music can have a very positive impact on children,” Brake said. “It will be a safe and healthy environment for youth to hang out in.”
Students will have the opportunity to learn how to play instruments such as guitar, drums, ukulele, piano, flute, saxophone and more, and gain a strong foundation of music theory as well as practice.
Brake said the response to his idea for the centre, which he says he’s been thinking about for more than two years, has been positive, with lots of interest in the lessons from people of all ages.
“The response has been overwhelming to say the least, and I’ve just been testing the waters so far,” Brake said.
He added that he will consider the music centre a success if he is able to reach even just one person with music lessons, but he does have one big goal.
“My end goal is to slingshot someone from Inuvik or the Western Arctic into receiving a Juno,” Brake said. “There’s a ton of talent here that no one’s ever seen before.”
Good luck Glen. I’m from Inuvik originally and I cut my teeth playing lead guitar for Louie Goose and the Lonesome Saviour Band. In the key of E, come in on the four.