GROOVE U School of Music students produce the Ohio Creatives Festival July 30-31 in Dublin

Music has been a part of Samm Taylor’s life for almost as long as he can remember.

The 20-year-old, a 2019 graduate of Hilliard Darby High School, remembers singing on a car stereo when he was 5 years old. One of his favorites was “Mambo No. 5” by Lou Bega.

At age 11, he started playing viola at Tharp High School in Hilliard.

“I remember the staff from Tharp coming to my elementary school and showing us the band and orchestra instruments,” Taylor said. “I chose the viola because one of the teachers said, ‘No one chooses this instrument, and it’s usually forgotten.

Taylor did not forget the viola and added the ukulele, electric bass, keyboards and drums to his repertoire of performing instruments.

He and many other musicians, filmmakers, producers, engineers and more will showcase their various skills at the first – and probably only – Ohio Festival of Creations July 30-31 in Dublin.

The Ohio Creatives Festival is the original idea and flagship project of the 11 graduates of the 2021 class of GROOVE YOURSELF, a two-year music school at 5030 Bradenton Ave. at Dublin.

The two-day festival will feature local bands, independent films and, just as important, connect performers and a range of music industry professionals, said Evan Hoffman, 21, of Milan, CEO of Ohio Creatives Festival. and a 2021 graduate of GROOVE U.

Each GROOVE U graduate class is responsible for creating a required wrap-up project.

The Class of 2021 hosted the Ohio Creatives Festival through the student-run label Elementary Records at GROOVE U.

While prospective GROOVE U students may host a similar festival, the specific composition and branding of the Ohio Creatives Festival is unique to the class of 2021, said Sarah Hudson, GROOVE U director of development.

The Ohio Creatives Festival has evolved, like many things, in response to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

“We planned it because we missed South by Southwest” in 2020 and 2021, Taylor said.

GROOVE U students typically traveled to Austin, Texas each March to attend a big annual event that included movie screenings, live music, lectures, and other music-related activities.

“It’s a great opportunity to network and meet people from the industry,” Taylor said. “Unfortunately, COVID-19 hit a week before we left. Then this year they didn’t have a festival in person. So we got together and decided to start our own festival because we never had it. opportunity to experience South by Southwest. “

Live music will be played from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on July 30 and from 4 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. on July 31 at the stages of the Darby Lot in historic Dublin city center. The land is adjacent to the Dublin branch of the Columbus Metropolitan Library, 75 N. High St., and behind Tucci’s, 35 N. High St.

Columbus-based groups Laveer and Pray for Sleep will headline July 30 and 31, respectively.

Taylor will be part of the team working to present the two days of live music at the festival.

A series of lectures – ranging from how to shoot movies, record music and avoid copyright infringement – is offered from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on July 31 at the Exchange in the Bridge Park neighborhood. Film screenings are also scheduled for July 31.

Ticket office is required for all events except live music, said Hoffman, a graduate of Edison High School in Milan, which sits between Cleveland and Toledo and is known to be Thomas’ birthplace. Edison.

For a schedule of classes, events and ticketing information, go to

The aim of the festival is to “connect creatives, industry professionals and businesses to launch careers and build relationships, while allowing creatives to share content,” Hoffman said.

Hudson said festival planning is just one of the many ways GROOVE U prepares its graduates for careers in the music industry.

GROOVE U was founded by Dwight Heckelman, a former faculty member at Berklee College of Music in Massachusetts who has experience as a music journalist and publisher, said Hudson.

The school offers a two-year degree, as opposed to an associate’s degree, because it doesn’t offer general education courses, Hudson said.

It was founded as a company in 2010 and got its first promotion in 2012.

Each class is limited to 12 students to help place its graduates into employment, which it does at a 94% rate, Hudson said.

The school has six main areas of study: audio production, music business, live sound engineering, video production, interactive media, and independent music.

There’s a 4-to-1 ratio between lab time and class time, Hudson said.

Meanwhile, Taylor said, GROOVE U has helped him expand his knowledge and love of music.

“I learned to record, produce and mix (music),” he said.

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