Arkansas Arts Academy’s high school guitar program is among the very few in the nation that approaches guitar instruction through what may be America’s most influential, far-reaching art form: rock and roll.

While the bulk of our repertoire is based on classic rock, consideration is also given to the study of more current music selections that are relevant to students. As the students progress through the program, they are exposed to other important American contributions to music such as blues, folk, country, and jazz. Sub-genres of these styles like bluegrass, modal jazz, heavy metal, etc. are also explored.

The ultimate objective of the program is to help the aspiring guitarist achieve proficiency, and then make advances toward mastery of the instrument by developing the confidence and skills needed to perform successfully as a soloist and part of an ensemble.

Concerts and live performances are another part of what makes this program special. Students with little or no experience performing in front of an audience can get their start by performing onstage surrounded by a large ensemble. As the student becomes more confident in their skills on and off stage, they have opportunities to perform live with a smaller ensemble or as a soloist.

No audition is required to enter the program. Courses are offered as an elective or as a four-year course of study for more serious students. Students who want the experience of rehearsing and performing with a group of seriously dedicated players can audition for The Rockhoppers.

The guitar is a small orchestra. It is polyphonic. Every string is a different color, a different voice.
- Andres Segovia
Every time you pick up your guitar to play, play as if it’s the last time.
- Eric Clapton