Music and audio courses

Music and audio mentoring programmes for young people 15-24 who may not fit into mainstream education settings.   

Led by industry professionals, for every level and stage of your journey, Crescendo’s programmes help develop skills in songwriting, audio engineering, music production and recording, whilst also teaching wellbeing and communication skills.

About Crescendo Trust


Launched in 2012 by Marcus Powell from Blindspott and City of Souls, Crescendo’s music mentoring programmes offer youth that are into music, but may not fit in to mainstream education settings or have access to recording equipment an opportunity. Our music mentors are all practising NZ musicians and offer up their skills, experience and networks to help others find their path.

Our Programmes

Crescendo offer two programmes that run between 9-12 weeks and cover composition, recording, audio and live sound.  Classes are held at Crescendo Studio in Avondale, Auckland, or online if working under Covid-19 vaccine and distancing restrictions. On graduation from Te Ara, students may be eligible for internships or paid work opportunities with Crescendo Studio. See an overview of all courses here.

Programmes are open to youth 15 -24 years and are free for youth, see below for more info of download the PDF flyer. If you work with youth and want to order copies of the brochure for your organisation or school, please email

Te Urunga - the Entrance

Introduction to music production, digital music production, songwriting, composition, audio engineering, daw, and recording.
Foundations Course. Beginner Level  


If you have an interest in music, but you’re not sure if music is the right path for you, then Te Urunga is the right level for you. This course covers the fundamentals of song writing and recording. 

Working alongside Crescendo Mentors, as a group students will write, record and mix a song, learning about composition, rhythm, working in a studio, digital audio and the process of producing a song. During this course there is a strong focus on building mental health, self esteem and confidence. By the end of the course, students will have an overview of recording equipment and software and knowledge of the varying roles that exist for a career in music or audio.

How is it structured?

Classes run for 9 weeks and are twice a week on Mondays and Tuesdays 10am-1pm.
Intake 2: Monday 2nd May – Tuesday 28th June 2022 (No classes Monday 6th June).

group of youth

What does it cover?

The course covers an introduction to:

  • Different genres and artists
  • Creating lyrics, rhymes and composing songs
  • Music and recording equipment
  • Recording software/Digital Audio Workstations
  • Hauora/wellbeing
  • Goal-setting
  • Teamwork and collaboration
  • Creativity, self-expression and self-awareness
  • Professional soft-skills and communication


This course is free for youth 15-24. Fill in the registration form below to secure your place in the May 2nd intake, or get in touch by filling in the form below.

Te Ara - The Way

Music production, digital music production, songwriting, composition, audio engineering, daw, and recording.
Intermediate Level 

This course is perfect for people who have some knowledge or experience songwriting or in audio and may want to pursue music or audio as a career. Broaden your existing knowledge and specialise in your chosen area of songwriting or audio production. 

Whether as an artist producing your first single or album, or as an audio engineer, producer, singer songwriter or band member; you will have the opportunity to work with other tauira and individually, as well as in group settings receive one-on-one mentoring from industry professionals who will share their skills and knowledge with you.

How is it structured?

Classes run from 9 weeks and are three times per week on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays 4-7pm.
Intake 2: Monday 30th May 2022 – Wednesday 10th August 2022 (no classes Monday 6th June or during school holidays 11-22 July).
On completion of this course, students are automatically enrolled in Mahi Waiata (The Gig) – see below.


What does it cover?

Topics covered include:

  • Music production and working with clients
  • Audio engineering and DAW
  • Collaborative songwriting
  • Music industry business
  • Artist Development
  • Creating a demo

This course is free for youth 15-24. Fill in the registration form below to secure your place in the May 30th intake, or get in touch by filling in the form below.

Mahi Waiata - The Gig

Intermediate Level (Students must complete Te Ara before pursuing Mahi Waiata)

Mahi Waiata is a three week course teaching teaching an introduction to live sound and performance. You will be exposed to the wider workings of the industry and gain hands-on experience organising and promoting a live gig. You will learn about the different roles involved and how to communicate with backstage and techs.

This course is for Musicians wanting to learn more about performing live, gig promotion, budgeting and logistics. The course covers what to expect from people organising a live gig, the different roles involved, how to communicate with promoters, backstage and techs, questions you may be asked and what is expected of you / or your band.  

What does it cover?

  • Introduction to live sound
  • Organising a live music event
  • Performance
  • Music industry business and marketing 
  • Exposure to professional services delivery processes and deadlines
  • Mental health and safety in the industry

How is it structured?

Classes are three times per week on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays 4-7pm, and extra hours may be needed as negotiated with the group. 

The next course dates are:
Intake 1: Monday May 2nd 2022 – Wednesday May 18th 2022
Intake 2: Monday August 15th – Wednesday August 31st 2022

Watch the 2021 documentary ‘the Collective’ following Crescendo students organising a gig.

For more information on 2022 intakes of mahi waiata, please email

Programme Enquiry

Fill in the form below if you have and our programme manager will be in touch shortly.


Crescendo has funding to offer places in our programmes free to youth 15-24.

Many of the youth that attend do not fit into, or have dropped out of mainstream education or employment pathways. We welcome people from all walks of life and focus on wellbeing and positive mental health practices to improve self esteem and self worth. We aim for 95% of programme graduates to transition into employment or further education.

If you are an organisation working in schools, youth development or with ‘at risk’ or NEET youth and want to refer people to our programmes or 1-1 Mentoring sessions, please get in touch on the form above.

Crescendo Artists Performing


“Working with Crescendo I have created two EPs. They really helped with creativity. The environment you are in, being around people that are into what you are into – it really helps. Working with CTOA it’s helped me not be afraid, to just push my work out there.”

– Levi Parker, Crescendo Graduate. 
View video here.

“Music is a distraction from a lot of things, and music definitely helps. Being part of Crescendo,  feels like a family. Without music I would be nowhere. I would still be on the streets. If music is your dream, then follow it and don’t let anybody stop you” 

– Wilimena, Crescendo Graduate.
View video here.


“After attending classes at Crescendo, I really noticed the difference in her confidence. Her anxiety and tourettes had really reduced and she was able to perform in front of people.  I had tried to seek help and support from so many other services, but nothing had really worked. I don’t know if it was having male role models in her life for the first time, or the connections she made with her mentors through music.

– Mother of a teen that attended Crescendo Music Mentoring.
View video here.

Mailing List

Sign up to Crescendo’s mailing list to hear about upcoming programmes, courses and events.