We’re really excited to announce that we’ve just published three entirely new courses on Soundfly.com! But perhaps more importantly, these courses are part of a new learning product that is entirely different than anything we’ve done so far and will help you better achieve your goals.
Our new courses are part of a program we’re calling Soundfly Mainstage. Mainstage courses are focused, month-long sessions that will take you deeper into a topic and support your learning with additional resources to better help you achieve concrete improvement. Students get access to a Slack community forum for peer feedback and sharing resources, bonus content and exercises, and in-depth feedback and one-on-one mentoring from an industry expert. Ultimately, these courses are about giving you the support you need to make sure you achieve the goals you’re aiming for.
Crowdfunding is an increasingly important skill in modern music business. This course is taught by experienced crowdfunding whiz Jay Coyle, who has helped run campaigns for acts like Sloan, Presidents of the United States of America, and more. Sign up to learn about how to prepare your audience, structure your campaign, develop your pitch, target your superfans, and blow your fundraising target out of the water.
It’s amazing how many auditioning singers we meet who never learned how to accurately read a piece of music, but it’s a critical skill if you want to get to the next level in your career. This course, taught by TheoryWorks founder Amy Stewart, is our solution for those singers. We’ll take you through a six step process to prepare a brand new piece of music for an audition, learning key reading and theory concepts along the way.
This course makes us smile in so many ways. Composing is a lifelong skill, but it builds on a few fundamental concepts. In this course Australian composer and educator Tim Hansen takes us through a number of important musical concepts, such as subdivision, rhythm, time signatures, tonality, timbre, and more. For each topic, we analyze a piece of contemporary music that showcases the concept in an interesting way, and then challenge you to use it in your work.
How Mainstage Works
Mainstage courses are available at three different price tiers: Basic, Plus, and Pro. The Basic level allows you to access all the course content, but at your own pace and without any extra attention. The Plus level opens up a community of other students for you to join, where students can share tools and resources, post their work and music, and get feedback from peers and community managers who each have years of experience in the course topic. In addition, the Plus level offers bonus content and a more structured learning experience with weekly assignments. The Pro level builds on that by providing even more in-depth personal mentoring from an experienced advisor, including personal weekly feedback reports, more accountability, and a final assessment and certificate.
Why are the courses designed like this?
We’re wholly dedicated to helping musicians learn and grow. Through external research, conversations with students, and experiments on our site, we’ve pinpointed some things that seem to make a huge difference in helping students progress, namely, accountability, feedback, varied practice, community, motivation, and more. We’ve structured Mainstage to maximize all these elements in our courses. Students who sign up for the higher pricing tiers will get accountability and feedback in the form of a knowledgable expert who will email them weekly to check on their work and help them improve. Similarly, we’re also creating Slack groups to encourage peer-to-peer learning.
Developing Mainstage was inspired by the understanding that, at the end of the day, learning can be difficult, and learning online can be even harder. Effective learning requires that you push yourself outside your comfort zone, and we all need a little help with that sometimes. Our aim with Mainstage is to push you as much as we can, help you stay accountable, and give you the sort of feedback, problem solving, and validation you need to keep going — all in the course of a single month.
Any evidence that it works?
We’ve built all our courses on a foundation of scientific research around effective online learning, and in the past few months we’ve been fortunate to see our prototype for Mainstage, Orchestration for Strings, get a higher rate of engagement than we’ve ever seen before. So far, students have turned in more than 80% of assignments, each demonstrating steady improvement and a clear understanding of course topics. While they’re still working on the final project, we’re expecting a 90-100% completion rate, with students already calling it a “very productive course” and saying they are “amazed at the value we get from this course.” We’re implementing these learnings into all of our Mainstage courses.
What about your free courses?
We continue to believe strongly in the importance of accessibility and the need to provide resources for musicians all over the world, so we will continue to produce and market free courses across a range of topics. If there’s something specific you’d like to see us produce next, shoot us a note at [email protected]. We’d love to hear about it!