Tobin Wagstaff founded Studio Percussion in June 2002 when he began teaching private drum/percussion lessons out of his home.
In spring of 2003, the studio created its first group class of about 10-12 students. A vision for impacting youth and the community by mentoring and providing leadership opportunities emerged, setting a foundation for Studio Percussion today. Student population continued to grow and the need for a commercial location became evident.
In June 2004, Studio Percussion moved into its first commercial location on University Avenue. At this time, developments were underway to incorporate the studio as a non-profit organization and a board of directors was formed. Classes had become more specialized, birthing the first group drum set classes and drumline-type groups, while private lessons continued. In 2004, three hurricanes impacted the state of Florida including the Gainesville area. Roof leaks damaged studio equipment and created health concerns for all members. It became necessary to move into our current location. We were also expanding into other instruments such as guitar, bass, piano, and voice and needed more space.
On November 1, 2004 Studio Percussion, Inc. incorporated became a non-profit organization. 2005 became a year of growth and development that accelerated the studio's influence and impact on the community, both musically and otherwise. In September 2006, our application for tax exemption was approved by the IRS making us a charitable 501c3 organization.
In 2009, Tobin Wagstaff and his family were selected to be the recipients of an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition for using Studio Percussion to impact the Gainesville area. Studio Percussion grew significantly in 2010 which played a roll in the decision to move to their new location. The move allowed the studio to restructure its programming and position itself for new growth.
In 2019, we officially closed our retail store moving along with trends towards online shopping and we were not interested in pursuing that. It doesn't align with our goals. We liked having our small retail shop to be able to handle local needs. We also officially handed over our dance studio to local dance organizations we partner with. This has allowed us to consolidate and focus on our founding activities of teaching music lessons and classes. In that, we decided to move to a more efficiently facility. We are very happy with this!
COVID-19 hits us strong beginning in February of 2020. We heard rumors of the virus as early as December 2019, and began experiencing its concerns amongst families and other programs we work with in January. In February 2020, we ceased all in-person activities and have observed all CDC guidelines. We softly opened our physical location when we were allowed to and now we are back full-time and excited about new opportunities and continuing our work after this incredibly challenging year.
January 1, 2023. Now we have a new journey! We decided to expand and change the way we operate! For the first time in 20 years (!) we decided we no longer need a destination commercial space. So we left it. We are now using an itinerant teaching model which allows more flexibility and saves costs for everyone. Classes are taught are your home, or at the teachers home, or a school, or any studio or other place like a church or community center. So instead of Studio Percussion being about a specific place and specific instructors we are focusing more on our philosophy and expanding our team to any instructor who wants to be a part of our vision. How cool is that? Furthermore, we have expanded! We have started a new school, the St. Augustine Music School, in historic St. Augustine, Florida. We also opened this school in January! New year. New journeys! So exciting. We are so proud to have been serving students for more than 20 years now. Wow! The story continues...
Please join us and lets have a lot of fun and learn a lot of music!