Workshops, Lessons, and Classes

Franke Center Education offers classes, workshops, and lessons. Our teachers are dedicated professionals who excel in their field and make learning fun!

Guitar  |  Blues Fingerpicking  with Kjell Croce  |  6-week course  |  Starting May 4

The Franke Center for the Arts is pleased to offer a new six-week guitar workshop with one of our favorite performers, Kjell Croce. Croce will teach fingerpicking blues guitar techniques and the workshop will feature the songs of the great bluesman Mississippi John Hurt. Lessons will be geared toward intermediate players looking to expand their skills and learn new techniques. Guitarists who haven’t tried fingerpicking before will find this a great introduction while guitarists who are already comfortable with fingerpicking will add new skills to their repertoire. Basic chord knowledge and familiarity with the guitar will be necessary. The workshop will cover equipment and techniques and participants will learn Mississippi John Hurt songs including Creole Bell, Louis Collins, Stack O’Lee Blues, Sliding Delta, and Got the Blues, Can’t Be Satisfied in several keys. Each session will run 1 to 1 ½ hour.

Workshop dates will take place on Tuesdays: May 4, 11, 18, 25, and June 1 and 8, from 6 pm to 7:15 pm. The cost is $100, and guitarists ages 16 and up are welcome to participate.

Guitarist Kjell Croce is a musician who wears many musical hats. Now based in Marshall, Michigan he has traveled and lived in various parts of the United States, and has been fascinated by the abundance of musical styles throughout the country. From blues to bluegrass, folk to jazz with a big helping of rock and roll, he has absorbed these styles and made them into his own. He has shared stages with bluesmen Lonnie Brooks and Jimmy Johnson, singer/songwriters Ellis Paul, Kate Cambell, and Dave Ramont, and performed at the Michigan Talent Showcase, the Ann Arbor Dancing Lights Folk Festival, and Harmonyfest in Three Rivers. In addition, his last CD “Lightnin’ Rod” received airplay in the US and Europe with Ray Pieters-Dreesens of Radio Milo commenting, “Very expressive voice, strong lyrics, great rootsy and diverse sound.” In addition to his solo work, he can be seen performing with the group’s COW and 3LB CUT.

The workshop will take place in person at the Downstage Club at The Franke Center, and COVID-19 safety restrictions will be in place. Participants will need to sign in, sanitize their hands, wear masks, and maintain a distance of 6 feet from one another.


Yoga  |  The Begin  Series with Erin Reed  |   Through April  17

Creative Wellbeing 

March 6, 13, 20, April 3, 10, 17 | 9:30am – 10:45am. This 6-week healing program was designed for people who are new to yoga practice and/or seeking to reconnect with their bodies. Every experience we have in life is processed through our physical bodies. Experiences such as stress, injury, or trauma are all experiences that may disconnect us from the wisdom in our bodies. Experiences create patterns in our bodies and our lives. Through this series, you will be supported to build awareness and create patterns that serve your wholeness and wellbeing.  Yoga is a healing art that translates to mean union, and through yoga practice, we are able to unify by bringing awareness to our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual bodies. Through yoga practice, we are able to create intentional pathways for connection and wellbeing. This series will focus on accessible asana (postures), pranayama (breath) with an intention to support you in the experience of befriending your body, awareness, self-compassion, empowerment, flow, and edge. Each class will include movement and breath, centering, embodied movement, deep relaxation, and integration. Each session will be 75 minutes.

Erin is a graduate of The Evergreen State College where she studied movement, mind/body practices, and multi-cultural counseling. She has been studying, practicing, and teaching yoga and mindfulness for 23 years. In 2018, Erin earned her 300-hour trauma-sensitive yoga teacher certification from Grand Rapids Healing Yoga, and in 2020 she earned an additional 300 hours of training to be certified as a yoga therapy practitioner by the Body Mind Being Institute. Erin has guided trauma-sensitive yoga practices for trauma survivors in both group and individual sessions, as well as community yoga classes.

Meets once per week on Saturdays 9:30a – 10:45a in person or via Zoom, March 6, 13, 20, April 3, 10, 17
In-Person:  there are limited drop-in spots open for in-person instruction (masked and socially distanced in The Franke Center’s Downstage space) $20 per session