Unlike Pinocchio, musicians value strings, truth, and fashionable headwear. Distance yourself from the hapless haberdashery of perjuring puppets with today's Groupon: for $80, you get enrollment in one session of any adult group class (a $160 value) at Old Town School of Folk Music, which has locations in Lincoln Square and Lincoln Park. Old Town School of Folk Music's classes have educated Chicagoans in a melodic array of musical instruments, techniques, and genres since 1957. Strum your way into your nephew's friend's garage band by tuning up your voice or guitar, or cover rocking Civil War ballads with a more antiquated instrument such as the fiddle, mandolin, or dulcimer. Ensembles allow intermediate musicians to hone their skills in various genres and tribute bands, and dance and movement classes dabble in everything from yoga to Capoeira. Old Town School of Folk Music also teaches theater and visual art classes, as well as a comfortable selection of beginner's classes for novices and experts posing as prodigies. Space is limited; check the calendar for new session registration dates.
- I'm glad my teacher is encouraging and always helps us out during the jam sessions after class (half-hour long). – Brenda H., Yelp, Lincoln Park location
- The Hula dancing classes I took here were one of the best ideas I've ever had. That was serious fun and a great workout. – Lois A., Yelp, Lincoln Square location
Old Town School of Folk Music
Originally founded in 1957, Old Town School of Folk Music teaches and facilitates performances of arts rooted in the traditions of diverse American and global communities. More than 700 accredited music, dance, theater, and visual-arts courses expand the cultural horizons of students of all ages and abilities, and more than 300 concerts and events reach more than 200,000 audience members every year.
Founder Frank Hamilton hoped that through his nonprofit academy "teacher and student would be partners in learning." Today, the school continues that tradition, fostering supportive learning environments that draw from an accessible education model. The school also presents performances by internationally known touring artists and Chicago's local artists—as well as its own staff and students—nearly every weekend, with free world-music concerts on Wednesday nights. Old Town School operates three facilities in Lincoln Park and Lincoln Square, including one 425-seat and two 150-seat concert halls, 64 classrooms, two music stores, a café, and a resource center.
909 W Armitage Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60614Get Directions