After our daughter, Piper, had so much fun at a class here, I had to learn more about this niche business and the people that make it what it is.
I believe in the arts and the benefits of creativity and expression in our society, so it was a pleasure meeting with Molly Shortridge and Justin Clauser of The Perfect 5th Musical Arts Center recently for a tour and some insight into their business.
Here’s some of my conversation with these two important Central PA musical educators…
1. Founding year?
2. Founder Full name?
Eric Wirsing (Guitarist for Solar Federation)
3. Current Owners Full Names?
Molly Shortridge (Flutist) and Justin Clauser (Guitarist)
4. Something people might not know about what you do/a common misconception?
In addition to music instruction, we offer private and group classes in art and acting. In the Summer, we have camps for music, art, and acting such as Musical Theater, Painting, Drawing, Guitar, Rock Bands, and even specialized camps for young children.
5. Anything you think people might want to know or find interesting?
We have highly trained instructors in their field who are also performing musicians. We have teachers from Julliard, Indiana University, Columbia College, Berklee College of Music, Temple University, and many other quality institutions.
You can also find our teachers in bands and ensembles such as Into The Spin, Breaking Benjamin, Colebrook Road, Good in the Dark, That Girl,, The Keating Jazz Orchestra, U.S. Army Field bands, The Maryland Symphony Orchestra, Trinity Chamber Orchestra, and Canaan’s Land. To find out more, please visit our website at to read biography’s of each of our instructors.
We are always interested in designing classes specific to what our community wants. If you have an idea for a small group of people we would love to make it for you. We currently work with the Girl Scouts to help them earn their art badges and would love to team up with more local organizations.
6. Your favorite part about the business?
Our favorite part of The Perfect 5th is the sense of community. It is not just a place for musicians, artists, and actors to learn, but a place for us to gather and collaborate.
Many local bands have formed out of students that met here and many students have been inspired to become professional artists and musicians.
We have prepared students for colleges, conservatories, musicals, acting jobs, working as session musicians, and even for performing in the Marine Band.
7. What’s your message or mission?
We strive to encourage, nurture, and teach students of all ages and abilities, adapting lessons to individual needs. We hope to enhance lives with the joy of learning an art that lasts a lifetime.
We also encourage our students to become members of the community who contribute their personal art and talent to others in ways that are meaningful and promote goodwill.

Find them everywhere!…

4913 Gettysburg Rd
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
Phone: (717) 691-9100

Derek Bicksler

Born and raised in Central PA. I spent a happy childhood in the Allison Hill area of Harrisburg before moving to and attending high school at Mechanicsburg Area Senior High. I love the two different environments and cultures I was exposed to as a child, it has made me more tolerant of those different from me and given me a somewhat unique perspective of the world. Son to two wonderful giving parents, Harriet and Dale, who are both my inspiration for my community service. They’ve done too many good things to mention, I really look up to them. (and my grandparents were missionaries and ministers and community servants, so I have a long line of selfless givers to live up to and hopefully make proud) Husband to my charming, witty, and beautiful wife, Katie, who’s my best friend and partner in kicking butt! We enjoy being active together, living a healthy lifestyle, and being the best parents we can be (like our parents were for us). Katie has so many qualities that I admire, and I love her more and more each day. Father to my super smart and talented daughter, Piper. She amazes me everyday and I know she will grow up to do awesome things. Like any parent, words don’t say how much I love her. She is the reason. Successful Real Estate Professional since 2006. I sell and list homes 24/7, but more importantly, I help my clients reach their real estate goals and achieve their hopes and dreams. There’s nothing else I would ever consider doing (except maybe be a rock climbing bum in another life LOL) and I work diligently every day to make sure my clients are happy and uber satisfied with their home selling or buying experience. It’s all about my clients. Industry Leader. I enjoy giving back to my profession and taking on leadership positions; I feel it is my duty to my industry and my clients. I stay involved and in touch with what is going on in our local and national housing markets and with legislation so that I can better serve my clients and protect home ownership. Here are just a few of the positions I hold or have held in the Central PA real estate housing market: -Board of Directors - Greater Harrisburg Association of Realtors (GHAR) -Board President - Greater Harrisburg Realtors Foundation -Committee Chair - GHAR Member Value & Communications Committee -Volunteer, Donator, & Mascot – GHAR Thanksgiving Food Drive -Committee Chair - GHAR Member Information Session Committee -Contributor - PA Association of Realtors social media instructional videos Volunteer in the community and in my industry. I have a standing gig as the technology tutor for senior citizens at Messiah Lifeways’ Mechanicsburg Place Senior Center in Downtown Mechanicsburg and I’m active with many other groups like Big Brothers Big Sisters (check out their latest event…talk about a FUNdraiser  ), Habitat For Humanity (I love demo!), New Hope Ministries, and Central Penn Food Bank just to name a few.


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