Music Lovers of All Ages Can Spring into March with Offerings from the Music Institute of Chicago

The Music Institute of Chicago (MIC) is not only one of the oldest community music schools in Illinois but also one of the most respected in the nation. MIC will spring into March with offerings to delight music lovers of all ages – an adult music appreciation class entitled “The Art of Listening” beginning March 3 and a Family Music Day on March 19.

The Art of Listening

MIC faculty member Stephanie Ettelson will lead the six week class beginning March 3, 2011 at MIC’s campuses in Highland Park and Winnetka. The course is designed for novice and experienced concertgoers, adult students, and parents of music students. Ettelson will explore chamber music (including the string quartet, duo sonata, and art song) and the grand form of the Concerto. The class will use excerpts of works by composers on MIC’s Faculty & Guest Artist Series concert programs this spring at Nichols Hall. Each student receives to free tickets to any spring 2011 concert.

The Art of Listening takes place on Thursdays, March 3-April 7, 9:30-11:30 a.m. at MIC’s Highland Park campus at 1991 Sheridan Rd. and 1-3 p.m. at MIC’s Winnetka campus at 300 Green Bay Rd. The six-week session costs $150 and includes two free tickets to an MIC concert. To register, visit musicinst.org or any MIC campus.

Family Music Day

This is an ideal event for anyone who wishes to explore music lessons for his or her children. As part of the national celebration of Music in Our Schools month, MIC will offer a day of concerts for all ages, professional development workshops for teachers, and an instrument petting zoo Saturday, March 19 at Nichols concert Hall, 1490 Chicago Ave., Evanston. Tickets for the Carnival of the Animals concert are $10 per family, available at musicinst.org or 847-905-1000 ext 108. All other events are free:

· 9 a.m.: Open house including MIC’s instrument petting zoo, refreshments, performances, and goodie bags provided by Chicago Parent.

· 10 a.m.: Family concert featuring an ensemble of faculty members and guest artists performing Carnival of the Animals, Camille Saint-Saëns’ description of 14 animals, accompanied by imaginative narrative poems. Cost: $10 per family.

· 2 p.m.: Ma Liang’s Paintbrush, an original adaptation of one of China’s most enduring legends by MIC Musical Theater Program Directors Matt Boresi and Mike O’Mara, performed by MIC’s professional adult musical theater troupe. The peasant boy Liang comes to possess a magic brush, uses his art to help his community, and, in the tradition of classical Chinese painting, explores the rhythms of the world around him. Ma Liang’s Paintbrush carries messages about perseverance, believing in one’s self, the value of community service, and the role art can play in improving everyone’s lives.

· 7 p.m.: McCracken Middle School Band performs with members of MIC ensembles-in-residence Axiom Brass and Quintet Attacca in a special concert honoring McCracken and its director, Chip De Stefano, with the inaugural MIC award for Excellence in Middle School Instrumental Music, which includes funds for the school’s music program and partial scholarships for students to study at MIC.

In addition to these family-oriented events and performances, MIC will host two free professional development workshops for teachers:

· 12 noon: MIC’s Institute for Therapy Through the Arts will help teachers discover new methods and strategies for differentiating learning in their classrooms through the arts, with a special focus on adaptation and inclusion techniques for special learners.

· 3:30 p.m.: MIC special workshop leader Kurt Barker, an acclaimed general music educator for nearly 20 years, will help teachers foster creativity in the classroom by exploring children’s literature and folk tales, visual art, puppetry, and storytelling through the medium of music. Participants in this workshop will receive ready-to-use activities that integrate the arts into the classroom.

Note: Illinois State Board of Education recertification credit is available at no cost for teachers who attend all or part of the days’ events (up to 10 CPDU credits). Graduate credit through the Carthage College Continuing Education program is available for an additional fee (1 credit).

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