Escuela Municipal De Bellas Artes De David


I mentioned in a previous post, that I would write more about Escuela Municipal De Bellas Artes De David. This is a wonderful project created by the Mayor of David.

I had noticed this building before, but on yesterday’s drive around, I decided I would go in and learn more about its purpose. As the front of the building says, this is the municipal school of fine arts in David.

I think it has been open for less than a year.

Click to enlarge

When I walked in, the main area was being set up for a meeting and microphones were being tested.

I went to the reception desk, introduced myself and gave the receptionist my card. I told her I had noticed the new building and would like to learn more for a possible post on Chiriquí Chatter.

She took me to visit with the person in charge and I want to tell you about this fantastic city project.

There are currently 85 to 95 students, between the ages of 4 and 14, that are being taught the musical arts. This includes typical Panamanian dance, and musical instruments. Classes are based on a trimester timeframe. Students progress based on their ability.

There are two music professors that are providing the musical instrument training. One provides training in the stringed instruments, violin, cello, etc. The second teaches piano, brass and woodwind instruments.

All of this training is FREE. The requirement is an honest desire to learn and an instrument. There are some modest charges for materials, which amount to approximately $10 a trimester.

The receptionist was kind enough to give me a short tour of the facility.

This is a photo from the front of the main area facing the entrance.



This is a photo of an organ that was donated by one of the churches.


This photo is a classroom for dance. You will notice the nice hardwood flooring.


This on one of the music classrooms.


Click to enlarge

This is a second classroom with a student receiving instruction. I asked if I could take a photo and the professor said she would have to ask the parent’s permission and they would arrive shortly. I gave her a card and asked her to send me an email if they preferred the student’s photo to not be displayed. Since I didn’t received an email or phone call I will assume there was no objection.

I talked to the student and asked how she liked music. She said she liked it very much. You can tell by her smile, that she enjoyed being here.


She was practicing writing music Clefs and her work was very neatly done.

The professor had a video on her cell phone of an orchestra made up of David students. Concerts are given occasionally in the main area of the building. I was impressed with the orchestra, which was playing the theme from the Pink Panther.

I am happy I stopped in. This is an exceptional program and David is privileged to have it. All of David should be proud of it.

I will mention one more thing, When I had asked the professor about the students needing to have their own instruments, she said that they had very few instruments for those without.

I know that there are many coming to Panama to retire or visit that probably have instruments that they no longer use. You might consider a donation to this school. I know it would be appreciated by the school and especially the student that would benefit.

HERE is a google map for the school’s location.


10 thoughts on “Escuela Municipal De Bellas Artes De David

  1. The orchestra recently performed in Boquete, doing music from the movies like Pink Panther, Batman, Star Wars and other classics. They were very inspiring and quite professional given their ages.

  2. That orchestra is the not municipal. Its the national childrens orchestra david section and tvey belong to escuela nacional de bellas artes located close to univ tecnologica.
    Therevis a confusion here. I know many of those young mudicians as several are also studying clasic ballet and flamenco and i make their costumes. They use facilities only. And only for mudic clases but not petformances as that building was built with no accoustic and no wood floor so remained closed for a long petiod of time. So its not a fine arts school. Ballet. Flmenco thestre cant be done there.
    Escuela de bellas artes only usesvthe place for that specic group
    All the other arys are located in their own building.

    Its not faie yogive credit to the wrong institution.

  3. There is no intention to give credit to any wrong institution Noris. This post is relates to Escuela Municipal De Bellas Artes De David, which is the building in the photo and located on the Google map. I am sure the concerts they provide in the building are most likely for the parents and friends of the students.

    The video I watched on the professor’s cell was most likely of the group you mentioned, because she said they went up in age to 21, which is older than this school has.

    Again, this post is only related to building in the first photo.

  4. Hello everybody, i didnt mean to say you gave credit intentionally, that is whya i said there is confusion here. this a very important topic to me because i know many of those kids and arts is my passion and i am very close to them in way.
    here are the facts.
    The childrens sinfonica orchestra belongs Escuela Nacinal de bellas artes. those facilities were build a couple years ago by previous mayor and remained closed, sadly, because it was built with no accoustic and no wood floor. so that defeated the purpose of the building. More sad is the fact that this would have solved a big problem that dance, music and acting sshools have had in david for many years. There is no theater or stage other than colegio san agustin so they all have to rent san agustin. even regular schools rent san agustin for their cultural valadas. More sad even. There is a ballet school that is not allowed to rent san agustin, because this dance shcool belongs to a non catholic shool and san agustin is catholic. so, even though Jesus commands that we love each other, those girls cant rent san agustin.

    The national school of fine arts has a wooden floor that needs to be replaced. the parents sell food every friday to collect money for the year end performance expenses. Escuala nacional de bellas artes located by the univ tecnologica is the only affordable arts school for low income kids who have a dream of becoming a fine arts performer. it is open to everybody poor or rich cause is a goverment school. the tuition fee is $35 per semester.
    The other place used for year end performances is casa de la cultura which has a stage with accoustic and wood floor but the floor is in terrible condition too. last year, the girls pointe shoes were destroyed and they were brand new. Aslo, there is no air conditioning, so it is very hard to perform for over three hours in an enclosed area with no air conditioning.

    I love my kids both from bellas artes and private arts schools-

    it is amazing that many of the symphonyc orchestra also dance classic ballet and flamenco and they have good grades in regular school. I wished I could do more so there will be a place where all fine arts students can perform without discrimination or without having to pay a lot of money.

    well, private schools do have the money to pay san agustin as they charge quite well, but still there is no place other than san agustin.

    So this place is only being used for these classes and meetings. as you said they were preparing for a meeting. this is what this building is really good for meetings. until they fix the accoustic and floor. they should shoot the architect or tha government for wasting that money- just a thought. love my kids- the flamenco group was scheduled to perform yesterday in boquete but there was a protocol issue with the bus, which is provided by INAC, as bellas artes belongs to INAC they are transported in their bus. so the parents, the kids and i worked so hard to have things ready and they could not perform. I was sewing all day long to finish the customes. they were so sad.
    will let you know date of performances.

    They just returned from panama city. they performed there 2 weeks ago. they did very well.}
    they have an excellent teacher who took over this year. the girls have improved tremendously in one year. teacher is a panamanian who studies and performed in mexico for over 10 years and came back to her home david, to contribute to the fine arts in david.


  5. Don,
    Thank you for writing about this school. My family and I are moving to Panama this June and are considering David as a possible destination. I have music in my background, and while we’re looking at a different school for our children, it’s nice to see that the city has a fine arts school.
    Thank you for covering this.
    All the best,

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