Workshops

Join us for an upcoming workshop! Your date with the arts.

Workshops are special, one-time experiences of music and dance with master teachers at the Old Town School of Folk Music. Low in time commitment but high in artistry, workshops are timely, engaging, and dynamic sessions targeted to serve participants with varied interests and goals.

The typical duration of a one-day workshop is an hour and a half to two hours, but we also offer intensives and multi-day or multi-week options. Workshops costs are dependent on length, specialty, and teaching artist, and some are funded by grants to make them low-cost to you. Each week we host something or someone new, so check back often!

Sat. December 03, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Dan’s Rhythm Method »

Admit it: Playing guitar in a rhythmic fashion can feel very awkward. Fear not! It happens to the best of us, so don't let rhythm challenges stop your musical journey. Let Dan help set you straight - straight fours, straight eights, you name it. Concentrate on your strumming, and improve your performance in many ways.

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

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Sat. December 03, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Scales With Colors »

Join Dan Fulkerson, rock and pop guitar guru, as he demonstrates his unique method of learning scales and soloing. Dan will provide crayons and paper as part of the process. Come as you are, and leave a better musician! All levels are welcome.

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

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Sun. December 04, 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Intro to Norwegian Fiddling »

Have chops, will travel... fiddlers looking to expand their tune repertoire to seemingly unfamiliar lands, this workshop is for you. Learn the old time fiddling of Norway: the variety of tunes, rhythms and compelling grooves. At it's roots, Norwegian fiddling has a lot in common with American Old Time fiddling. Cross tuning, double-stops, double stringed bowing and tonalities are shared techniques from one genre to the next. And because Scandinavian countries share the same origin for their fiddle traditions, learning this style is a great way to start exploring this culture's music.

AdvancedProgram: Fiddle & Cello

$25 ($24 members)

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Fri. December 09, 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Playgroup for Wiggleworms - Drop In »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$25 ($20 members)

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Fri. December 09, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Hoop Dance Workshop Series: Part III »

Part III of the series. Learn to hoop dance with weighted, adult-sized hula hoops in this three-part workshop series. From fundamentals to flow, this series will cover a variety of tips and tricks. Hoop-dancing is an intense workout and creative outlet. Participants are encouraged to sign up for all three parts of the series.

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$20 ($19 members)

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Sat. December 10, 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Pop-Up Caroling! »

Andrea Bunch is offering a special Pop Up Caroling event! Bring winter cheer to the Lincoln Square neighborhood with traditional and modern holiday favorites. All ages, all singers are encouraged to come caroling! We'll meet at Old Town School’s east building at 3:30pm, and head out to sing at 3:45pm. Song books will be provided. Dress warmly, and feel free to bring along thermos of your favorite caroling beverage. Come a-wassailing!!

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$10 ($10 members)

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Sun. December 11, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
International Youth Jam with Mohsen Namjoo »

Special guest Mohsen Namjoo will be hosting a Sunday morning jam with Iranian folk songs and music! All instruments, voices, and levels are welcome and encouraged. Great for teaching and learning with folks of all ages. Especially great for parents and their young folks discovering new instruments, songs, and styles. Come share your tunes, sing and dance with us. All ages. Super fun! Even if you’re not enrolled in class, come join us for music making and a window into our Children’s Music Program.

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Ensemble

FREE!

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Sun. December 11, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Fingerpicking For Absolute Beginners »

Learn simple thumb- and- one finger approaches to fingerpicking that can eventually turn in to more complex accompaniment. No fingerpicking experience is necessary; you'll start fingerpicking—simple techniques and patterns that you can use right away! You'll learn simple arpeggios, alternate bass patterns, and a “Travis picking” pattern. If you've already tried fingerpicking, Charles can help you with simple tips to help you with your tone, speed and coordination. And keep in mind that you can start fingerpicking even if you've learned only a few chords!

BeginnerProgram: Guitar

$25 ($25 members)

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Sun. December 11, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Folk Music and Rhythms of Iran »

Join Iranian singer, songwriter, and setar (traditional Persian lute) player Mohsen Namjoo for a workshop on songs and rhythms of Iran. Hailed as “the Bob Dylan of Iran” by the New York Times, Mohsen Namjoo is known for his unique style blending Persian music and instruments with rock and blues vocal techniques. Students will learn about Persian music theory and how to play scales and rhythms associated with Iranian folk music. String players, percussionists, guitarists, and players of Middle Eastern and African instruments will especially enjoy the workshop.

Open to AllProgram: Ensemble

FREE!

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Sun. December 11, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Making Chord Transitions Easier! »

Guitarists often find chord transitions to be challenging and time-consuming. Whether you're finding it difficult to move between open chords, barre chords, or anything else, this workshop will make life easier!

BeginnerProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

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Fri. December 16, 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Playgroup for Wiggleworms - Drop In »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$25 ($20 members)

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Sun. December 18, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Bluegrass Jam »

Open to anyone who wants to pick and sing. On the last Sunday of each 8-week session, Basses, Fiddles, Mandolins, Flatpick Guitars, Bluegrass Banjos, Singers, and Bluegrass Ensemble students are invited to join an informal bluegrass jam with our faculty. It’s free and open to prospective students, current students, former students, and anybody else who just wants to pick. All levels are welcome.

Open to AllProgram: Ensemble

FREE!

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Fri. January 27, 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL- Winter Beatles »

Warm up this winter by playing & singing songs by Lennon, McCartney & Harrison. Get out, play music, be social. This is always a good time, guaranteed for all!

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$15 ($10 members)

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Sun. February 12, 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Fretboard Geography: Simplifying the Guitar Neck »

Whether you are an experienced singer/songwriter or a beginning player, the guitar fretboard can be intimidating to learn. It doesn't have to be and you don't need a whole semester of music theory to start to unlock it. This fun workshop will help expand your knowledge of notes, chords, and keys, for use in performing the songs you love, accompanying others, or creating your own music. It’s also a great pre-curser or review for ongoing study of Fingerboard Theory.

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

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The Old Town School of Folk Music, Inc.
4544 N. Lincoln Avenue, Chicago IL 60625  •  773.728.6000