Arnold-Miller Cultural Heritage Program

closeup of hand drums


The Arnold-Miller Cultural Heritage Program offers instruction through culture-bearer led
heritage music and dance ensembles, master classes, and internships in music and the arts.

The goal of the program is to address racial inequity in music and music education by educating students from historically marginalized ethnic groups in their heritage music forms and providing skill building and internships in music performance, music education, and other arts-related professions. The creation of The ArnoldMiller Cultural Heritage Program was inspired by the work and dedication of Billy Arnold and Mary Ellen Miller, CMSS founding faculty members. Both Arnold and Miller have inspired generations of Springfield youth as musical leaders.

Meet our Interns

Since summer 2023, CMSS has offered several arts internships under the Cultural Heritage Program.


Meet our 2023-2024 school-year interns
Meet our summer 2023 interns

Workshops offered for the 2023-2024 School Year

Traditional Afro-Puerto Rican Bomba with Bomba de Aqui

Brendalíz Cepeda leads  opens in a new windowBomba de Aqui, a dance and music company that performs and teaches Afro-Puerto Rican traditions, with a focus on bomba. Instructors include Brendaliz Cepeda, lead dance, Oscar Noel, lead drummer, Saul Peneloza, lead drummer, Gloria Adosta, voice and maracas. Brendalíz Cepeda is the granddaughter of the great bomba performer Rafael Cepeda. A culture bearer in the truest sense, she learned the art and its history in her family. Saul Peñalosa, Bomba de Aquí’s musical director, is a well-known percussionist. The team will deliver instruction to elementary and middle school students through twice weekly workshop intensives. Participating students will learn two pieces from the Afro-Puerto Rican tradition: Sica and Yuba. Students will have the opportunity to learn drumming, the cua, maracas, traditional bomba dance, and songs.

CMSS Perform-A-Thon