Open House

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After School Arts Program

Learn more about the exciting musical opportunity available to children in the BISC-SL community!

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Learn more about the exciting musical opportunity available to children in the BISC-SL community!

  • What is the After School Arts Program?

    After School Arts is an extra-curricular provision offered at British International School of Chicago, South Loop. The program provides specialized teaching from prominent local musicians to students from age 4 upwards. 

    This also encompasses After School Arts with Juilliard - a program where students study either as individuals or in small groups with local Juilliard-affiliated performers. This includes:

    • Private instrumental lessons (currently offered in voice and violin)
    • Juilliard Chamber Classes. This is a new and exciting offering where students work alongside a Juilliard professional to learn the skills needed to develop their performing style in small groups. These projects are shorter in length (usually lasting about 10 weeks) but often students will return to develop their skills further in a new area. This is intended for students who already have some skills and knowledge in their chosen area. Offerings may change depending on the term, but currently students can choose:
      • Chamber Music - Instrumental
      • Chamber Music - Vocal
      • Jazz, Popular Music and Improvisation
      • Theater and Improvisation skills
  • What makes the program different from others?

    Students are learning from instructors of an exceptionally high calibre - the teachers are leaders in their craft who have graced stages on several continents including the great performing venues of the world, from Carnegie Hall to the Harris Theater. They have established professional chamber music ensembles, premiered new compositions and collaborated with great and notable artists worldwide, and continue to do so.

    Our chamber music program is a new and highly innovative program not found in other locations. Students across a wide range of subjects and interests have the opportunity to explore their chosen subject in a completely new way alongside a Juilliard professional, developing ensemble skills not possible to achieve in a solo lesson setting. This also helps them to develop techniques often far above those expected for students of their age.

  • What instruments will be offered in the program?

    We offer the following instruments and options:

    • Violin*
    • Cello
    • Flute
    • Saxophone
    • Piano
    • Voice*
    • Music Theory
    • Chamber Music - Instrumental**
    • Chamber Music - Vocal**
    • Popular Music, Jazz and Improvisation**
    • Drama and Improvisation**

    * Taught by Juilliard instructors as part of the After School Arts with Juilliard

    ** Part of the After School Arts with Juilliard program - offerings may vary depending on the term. 

    Others available upon request

  • When do the lessons take place?

    For the 2020-21 school year, lessons take place September 2020 through June 2021.

    Please note:

    1. Lessons do not take place through the breaks.
    2. Due to the current circumstances teachers will be providing virtual lessons when it is not appropriate for them to be in school. Further information will be provided if needed.
  • Where do lessons take place?

    Lessons take place at BISC South Loop in either the practice rooms or music classrooms. 

  • How much do the lessons cost?

    Price on request 

  • How can I book?

    Please email Eleanor Samson ( in order to register your interest for instrumental lessons, stating what instrument you are interested in your child learning. Please note: there is a waiting list in place, particularly for popular instruments and so it is not guaranteed you will be able to start immediately. 

    If you are interested in an instrument which we do not currently offer, please still get in contact - we are constantly recruiting for new outstanding teachers and would hope to offer it in the future.

  • Do I need to bring my own instrument?

    All students will need to have their own instrument at home to practice with. BISC South Loop does not provide instruments. Teachers and staff will be able to advise on a suitable purchase. These will also need to be brought to school for the lessons - the only exceptions to this being piano and drumkit.

  • Questions?

    Please send an email to