Creative Music Center’s skilled teachers have been nurturing musical talent in students of all ages and skill levels for nearly three decades, earning recognition for their efforts with a Best Music Lessons and Instruments award from Moffly Media readers in 2009. They achieve this high level of instruction by adapting their teaching styles to the needs of each pupil rather than insisting that everyone play Mozart or eat sheet music for breakfast. While private lessons prep students to play everything from the viola to the trombone, teachers also foster camaraderie through group lessons for piano and guitar. Students who haven’t hollowed out a baguette to make their own French horn can rent or buy an instrument from the center, which stocks brands such as Yamaha and Fender.
Since 2002, Rock House's system of musical instruction—which comprises DVDs, books, and Web-based lesson support—has helped aspiring rock stars to master strumming guitars, plucking basses, and tickling keyboards to a variety of different genres. Several renowned blues, rock, and metal artists have participated in the Rock House program, including members of Megadeth, The Gary Hoey Band, and Parliament-Funkadelic. In addition to their training materials, Rock House also certifies instructors at local music centers so they can conduct one-on-one private lessons tailored to enhancing students' strengths and neutralizing their weaknesses, such as the inability to destroy a guitar on the first smash.
Ken Benshish and Yi Qian both grew up loving music, but the process of learning to play it ranged from uninspiring to mind numbing. The two musicians started iSchool of Music & Art to provide a much different experience—a positive, supportive atmosphere that takes into account each student’s personality and goals. Students aged 3 and older who can’t tell a drumstick from a plectrum and don’t even know the street value of a quarter note can learn piano, drums, guitar, or voice skills from scratch, then test their newfound skills with multiple performance opportunities throughout the year. Instructors host private classes or group students into their own rock-band performance troupes, and intensive camps culminate in field trips to Lincoln Center and a tour of a real recording studio.