Welcome to the Marquee Academy of Performing Arts website!
A lifelong passion for music, coupled with a reputation for innovation and entrepreneurial vision, indicate that Marquees Founding President, J. Mathew Naylor, has what it takes to guide the academy in the years ahead.
One would not automatically conclude after reading Mr. Naylor’s résumé that becoming Marquees founding chief executive was the inevitable next step in his career. Yet, it is a natural progression in a life of rich experiences that include working as a roadie, playing piano, a stint with Sebastian International, recording jingles, collaborating on a restaurant, and becoming an architectural pool designer. Mr. Naylor would proceed to grow the company he founded from a start-up, to an award winning design and construction firm working on multi-million dollar developments.
Not yet 50 years old, with each pursuit, he has made a difference in the lives of others. Focusing his formidable leadership talents, entrepreneurial instincts, and passion for music on Marquee bodes well for the future of the academy as it approaches its first year.
While music was Mr. Naylor’s profession only briefly, it remains a brightly colored thread woven throughout the tapestry of his life. As a child growing up in the small town of Centerville, Utah, he was always drawn to music and musicians.
"I’ve always been extremely curious, I went to all sorts of musical performances when I was growing up…" says Mr. Naylor." I was interested in everything, from opera to contemporary pieces. One of the most important influences in that period was my high school music teacher – she had an enormous influence on me. She taught me the basics of actually constructing a performance - rhythm, melody, harmony, and sound. I was very excited by that and eventually moved to Los Angeles to pursue my musical education. Dave Brubeck was another huge influence on me. I realized that all of the strange, improvised chords I was playing actually had a name – Jazz!”
These days Mr. Naylor's musical tastes are eclectic. At any given moment, music by Whitney Houston, Rachmaninoff, Sinatra, Ray Charles, Justin Timberlake or Elton John are likely to reside next to each other in his collection.
Mr. Naylor attended the Dick Grove School of Music, one of the most unique schools in the country. (Grove pioneered many innovative concepts such as tying the study of chord symbols, jazzharmony, and chord-scale-theory to ear traiing) Graduating as a Recording Engineer, he was educated in all aspects of the music business and jazz piano as well.
Mr. Naylor made success his story with his limitless desire to accomplish his dreams. He would not settle for anything less. Instead, he aimed high and eventually this ‘can do’ attitude brought him the success he had wished for. He is truly a self-made entrepreneur.
Warm greetings to all of you who are considering becoming students. We invite you to become a part of this exciting development in music education. The hallmarks of Marquee are artistry, scholarship, leadership and community engagement. Please browse our website and explore who and what we are. We know it will generate excitement as you discover the many ways our organization is bringing music education to the Coachella Valley.
We invite everyone to consider becoming part of our organization. There are many ways to participate, including memberships, becoming a volunteer at the Academy, individual and corporate sponsorships, volunteering at concerts, or helping with our exciting fundraising efforts. We encourage you to become involved as a way to utilize your skills or develop new ones and meet new friends who share your values of service to the community and a love of music.
For students - we are here to help you grow in all aspects of performance. For the right student, I can promise you that Marquee is the one of the most amazing place on earth. A place to call home, a place where you will make close friends, study, learn and grow musically, and put your talents to work.
For parents - many parents have anxieties about their children aspiring to a career in music. Today, graduates of music schools are working in fields never before available - such as composers of music for video games or designers of electronic instruments. Some go on to law school and become agents, while others start companies in the digital music space. Some teach in public schools, and some work in hospitals as music therapists. The ability to teach an instrument is a powerful form of career insurance—music teachers abound in every city and village on the planet.
The Marquee experience is an excellent preparation for a music career - even if the student chooses a different path. Marquee gives students the discipline to master an instrument through daily practice; the leadership skills to organize and prepare ensembles for performances; the analytical and problem-solving skills that come from studying composition, harmony, and music theory; and the creativity to express oneself in a unique and authentic way.
If you or your child becomes a Marquee student, I think you will be surprised at the depth of passion and seriousness our students bring to their work. I look forward to welcoming you to the Marquee music family!
J. Matthew Naylor
After moving to the Coachella Valley in 1992, his passion for high standards led him to create his own architectural pool design firm that he named Architectural Blue. It would be the turning point in his professional and personal life. The leadership and creativity of Mr. Naylor has placed Architectural Blue in an elite group pool/watershape designers and builders whose projects demonstrate the highest level of technical expertise and design ingenuity in the industry.
Mr. Naylor is noted for his innovative designs that transform a backyard into a uniquely spectacular space - in complete harmony with the home and its surroundings. In addition to designing poolscapes and renovations, Mr. Naylor also develops unique outdoor living spaces, complete with custom-crafted fireplaces, sculpture and more.
Mr. Naylor's newest venture "Community Garden" is currently in the planning and development stages. Set for a 2017 opening this innovative compound will follow suit in it's uniqueness and creative flair.
Understanding the need to grow the company, Mr. Naylor recently expanded his portfolio to include sculpture, metal works, poolscapes, equipment and renovations.
After 20 years of leading Architectural Blue to success, Mr. Naylor again began looking for a new challenge. “I felt I really understood the business fundamentals and was good at it.” After years of dedicating himself to his business ventures, it was time for a change. “I felt a need to do something good and be active in my community – and music is my passion” Mr. Naylor recalls. The idea of a performing arts academy had long been a dream – and he was now in a position to make that dream a reality. In October 2012, Marquee Academy for the Performing Arts filed for their 501 (c) (3) status – and an institution was born.
“I have a very strong team of people, and wanted to give them a chance to lead. We have the opportunity to be a powerful force in the community - to help train the next generation of musicians and artists. It has been my experience that if you do the right thing and keep the mission foremost, it will be good for you and good for your community."
An accomplished musician, arranger, and composer, he has written many compositions, including solo piano arrangements and other musical scores. He has also been involved in a wide range of plays, musicals and music events. After 20 years in the desert, Mr. Naylor has established himself as a committed and integral part of the community.