This academy is no academy.
This is a one woman business. Her business: misleading her clients to believe they are working with Ian Garrett, the music instructor of Shania Twain. Once you go for your orientation, which she will claim to be a quick, free, meet and greet, she will tell you afterwards that it is $100.00. At that point, they would have sat with you for about an hour, not a few minutes, and she will then claim that she provided a service, thus, a payment must be made. Even if you argue that this fee was not disclosed to you over the phone, she will insist that it is outlined in their policy. To avoid further inconvenience, you may pay in the hopes to leave and never come back. But she won’t be done with you yet.
Before leaving, the office assistant (at least that is what she tells you when you meet her) will then try to convince you to have lessons with Ian Garrett. Explaining that you/prospective student is remarkable, and that such potential should not go to waste. She will emphasize that Ian Garrett is very booked up, and that if you do not sign up right away, the really good deal she is giving you, as well as the availability will be gone. Of course, this is not true, but if you do decide to sign up for a few lessons she will then tell you that you have to hold the spot by providing your visa information. She will then pretend that her machine is not working, in order to fill out a MANUAL copy, at that point she will take your visa information down, and leave the signature and amount blank – which is to be filled out when you return to confirm the lessons.
A few days later you will see charge of a ridiculous amount of money, in my case 1600.00, to your visa from this apparent “Academy.” At this point there is very little you can do, she will forge the amount, and whatever other information she has to in order to get the payment. At that point you are free to attend the lessons, but only after she has scammed you and basically stole from you. After many conversations with the “assistant” I was made aware that she is the owner of the company, and Ian Garrett actually works for her. She falsely advertised that the company is his, and that she works for him.
I have been to many music schools within the GTA, there are much better ones out there, as this is not a school, but a scam. I cannot believe she would scam students, I was 18 at the time, she knew that I couldn’t afford the lessons, hence why I held the spot in hopes to see if my parents would assist in payment. And then she goes and charges my visa. This woman is unreasonable, she would not refund my money after my bank, my mom, and myself spoke with her. She’s out for money regardless of the implications.
I call this woman, “woman” because to this day, after speaking with her over 100 times, she did not disclose her name. When you call her she with give you different names over time. The academy has no direct phone number, the number she uses is her personal cell phone. When she is not in the office she does not answer calls or return voicemails, not unless you are a new prospective student, who she can steal from.
This place this terrible, I’m surprised she is still in business. It saddens me that places like this exist, and how many people she has done this to.
Found At: The Canadian Academy of Vocal Music – Music Lessons