School of the arts

FBC Newnan School of Art Logo

Is that “Learn To Play Keyboard” book just sitting on your bookshelf getting dusty?  How about that guitar?

Find the motivation you need to really excel by taking high-quality private instruction lessons.  We’re not former hair band members…just Christians with a heart and desire for educating others in the arts!

First Baptist Newnan’s School of the Arts (SOTA) provides all lessons within the safe walls of the First Baptist Church of Newnan, GA.  An annual fee ($25 per individual; not to exceed $50 per family) covers administration costs and helps offset the cost of lessons.  You won’t find a better value for arts instruction and music lessons anywhere else in Newnan, Georgia!

Currently, the School of the Arts offers private instruction in

Have questions?

We’d be delighted to clarify how the School of the Arts works or which art disciplines are currently available for private lessons. Please contact SOTA Director Andrea Chitwood at 770-304-3151 or via e-mail.

Our history and our mission

The First Baptist School of the Arts is established to be a Christian school for providing quality instruction of the arts in a Christian atmosphere. It is founded in the name of Jesus Christ, our Savior.

More than twenty-five years ago, the vision for a school of the arts for First Baptist Church of Newnan, Georgia, was born in the mind and heart of one of our members, Sandra M. Carter. From a very small but solid beginning, this program grew from a small girl’s ensemble to a comprehensive school with more than two hundred students meeting weekly for private instruction.

The development of such a program was very unique at its inception and has been copied and spread to churches near and far. Untold numbers of Christian musicians are serving today with the education offered through our school of the arts. We see only the tip of the iceberg.

We believe the arts are God-given for the purpose of expression and enrichment of lives. We further believe that all talents are gifts from God. We believe in the stewardship and development of all God-given abilities. We trust every person who shares his or her talents in our school will find a warm welcome and a place that reflects our faith.

FBC Newnan School of Art image


Brian Coski

Brian Coski


Brian Coski is excited to rejoin the teaching staff at First Baptist Newnan’s School of the Arts.  He has received degrees from Liberty University (B.M.) and Georgia State University (M.Mus.Ed.). In addition to a long history in religious, educational and theater environments, Brian attributes piano performance studies as an interest that has shaped his career direction and specialty. He has also been privileged to work as an educator, choral director, and technical director in the Atlanta area arts and education community.  Brian currently serves Legacy Christian Church in Senoia as their Music and Technical Director. 

Andrea Chitwood

Andrea Chitwood


Andrea Chitwood is the School of the Arts director and private voice instructor as well as Young Musicians Choir director at First Baptist Church Newnan, GA. Andrea has been Sr. High Choir assistant for the past 20 years taking students on annual tours and festivals including destinations across the US, Europe, South Africa and Japan.
Andrea has served on the Young Musicians Task Force Team for the GA Baptist Convention since 2006 and is a member and soloist of the Jubalheirs, an all women’s choir through the GA Baptist Convention. She has served as Young Musicians clinician for the State Baptist Conventions of GA, SC and NC. Andrea holds a Bachelor of Music Education from Anderson University, in Anderson, SC and has taught in elementary schools in South Carolina, Texas and Georgia and has been the Music Specialist at Canongate Elementary School of Newnan, GA since 2012. The Chitwoods have two daughters Ashlee Grace and Abbey Rose.

lee chitwood

Rev. Lee Chitwood

Voice & Conducting

Rev. Lee Chitwood is a native of Williamston, South Carolina and has been the Minister of Music at First Baptist of Newnan since August of 2000. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Anderson University in Anderson, South Carolina and a Master of Music from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas with concentration in voice. Lee is an advocate for youth choirs hosting the Georgia Baptist Youth Choir Festival in 2004, 2013, 2017, 2021 and served as guest conductor in 2005 & 2018. Lee was the guest Clinician / Director for GA Baptist Youth 1 Music Camp June 2013 & 2019 and GA Baptist Allstate Ensemble Director 2014 (Washington, D.C.). Lee has also been featured Youth Choir Clinician at Church Music Georgia for the Georgia Baptist Convention in 2008 and 2009, the Church Music Conference of The Southern Baptist Convention in 2010 and the Tennessee Baptist Convention Church Music Conference in 2011. For the past 23 years Lee has taken youth choirs on annual tours, sharing the gospel message in song, across 27 states and abroad to Europe, South Africa and Japan.. Lee is a member of three professional choral, gospel groups, The Sons of Jubal, Jubal Tones and the 2000 Grammy nominated male chorus, The Century Men and has been soloist in all three groups. Lee and his wife Andrea have two girls, Ashlee Grace and Abbey Rose.

Adam Fenton

Adam Fentom


A native of Manhattan, Kansas, Adam Fenton serves as the Director of Multimedia Technology for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra.  As an undergraduate student at Northwestern University in Chicago, Adam studied with former Chicago Symphony Orchestra trumpet players Vincent Cichowitz and Will Scarlett.  He double majored in Trumpet Performance and Music Technology and was active in the marching and jazz bands as well as numerous student and university musical productions. Adam’s passion for digital music led to Master degrees in Music Technology and Telecommunications where Adam focused on three-dimensional audio recording techniques as well as multimedia applications involving audio and visual content.  Adam actively performs with the First Baptist Church of Newnan orchestra on Sunday mornings as well as the Peachtree Wind Ensemble community band.

Erin Fenton

Trumpet, Teeny Tykes & tunes

Erin Fenton has a Bachelor’s degree in Trumpet Performance from Northwestern University, in Evanston, Illinois. There she studied with former Chicago Symphony Orchestra members such as Vincent Cichowitz and Charles Geyer, and performed with the university orchestra, wind ensemble, jazz band and various small ensembles. Prior to college, she grew up in Fayette County, where she began studying the trumpet at age 10, and went on to participate in regional Honor Bands, Georgia All-State Bands, Solo and Ensemble Festivals, and the Georgia Governor’s Honors Program. Currently, Erin performs with the First Baptist Church of Newnan orchestra during weekly worship services. She has also served as the 3-year-old Children’s Choir director since 2008 and loves the opportunity to teach children the fundamentals of music each week.

brain messler

Brian Mesler

American Guitar & Recoording
Brian Mesler performed contemporary American Blues and Jazz at venues, private, and corporate engagements as a solo, duet, or ensemble from 1990 to 2000 with over 1400 shows. Brian has served on the faculty at SOTA since 1996 teaching American guitar styles and offering mobile recording for all ages, skills, and genre with over 25,000 sessions between Newnan and his home studio in McDonough. Brian holds Apple Certified Trainer – Logic Pro X, Apple Certified Support Professional, Apple Certified Technical Coordinator professional certifications. Brian lives in McDonough with his wife and three children since 1998 and members of Harvest Point United Methodist church in Locus Grove.
Viola Pike

Viola Pike

Strings - Violin, Viola, Cello, Strings, Ensemble & Orchestra
Viola Pike has taught private music lessons in Newnan for over 10 years. She has taught violin to students as young as 3 years old through adult. She has been the substitute director for The Joyful Praise Home School Choir for the past 3 years and has helped with the choir for over 12 years in different capacities, including a violin ensemble. She has taught at the Virtuoso School of Music in Peachtree City, through the Eluminatus and Bridge programs with Eagle’s Nest Christian Home Educators Association, and as a Substitute Music Teacher with Orchard Hills Academy in Newnan. She taught music and directed musicals at Northside Baptist School and served as a choral pianist, voice coach, and substitute pianist in San Antonio, TX. As a teen, Viola played in the Tarrant County Junior College Youth Symphony Orchestra in Fort Worth, TX. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Bible and Christian Education from Ozark Bible College in Joplin, MO, and completed graduate study in a co-op program with Pittsburg State University to receive teacher certification. She also has a teaching certificate for Elementary Education in Texas. She enjoys teaching students of all ages how to play music, and the beauty of harmony that results from the combination of instruments. Viola is married to Bill Pike, and they have 5 children: William, Kristine, Jennifer, Megan, and Rachel.
Alex Truitt

Alex Truitt


Alex Truitt studied at the Schwob School of Music of Columbus State University where he received his Bachelor’s in Music Education. There he played in the Wind Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, and saxophone quartet. He started taking piano lessons in the first grade from Amy Wilson at First Baptist Church of Newnan. In middle school, he started playing the saxophone and continued playing throughout high school and in college. He has been a member of First Baptist Church of Newnan for 15 years.

Ashlee Grace Chitwood

Ashlee Grace Chitwood

Graduated from Jacksonville State University with a degree in Music Education, primary instrument Oboe.
Principal Oboist for JSU Chamber Winds 2016-2019.
Currently the music specialist at White Oak Elementary School.
Offers oboe lessons and beginner piano lessons for the School of the Arts.

julia Keely

Julia Keeley


Julia Keeley fell in love with the piano and began taking lessons at age 7. She studied music and education at Cedarville University and later taught piano. She has served as pianist at three churches for 30+ years, accompanying congregations, soloists, ensembles and choirs. Christmas 2022 marked the seventh annual Keyboard Extravaganza she directed, featuring as many as 18 keyboardists on 4 grand pianos and a 54-rank Reuter pipe organ. Julia has recently returned to teaching piano and is excited to equip others to experience the joy of making music.

SOTA Registration Form

This form is for REGISTRATION only. To make a payment to your instructor please use our SOTA payment form.

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