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!

Sun. April 19, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Illapu from Chile - All Ages Jam »

Share music and rhythms, all ages and all instruments are welcome - come together to learn and play together with these special guests!

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Sun. April 19, 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Teen Songwriter Showcase: Connect, Share, and Perform »

Open to all teen songwriters! An Afternoon with Interlochen Arts Academy and Old Town School’s Teen Programs.

Open to AllProgram: Teen

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Sun. April 19, 1:30 PM – 5:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Bluegrass Banjo Mini-Camp: Beginner/Intermediate »

CALLING ALL BLUEGRASS BANJO PLAYERS: Join legendary players and teachers Alan Munde and Bill Evans as they teach two 75-minute workshops and lead a jam and final Q&A with all students before their evening concert. You don’t want to miss this!

BeginnerProgram: Banjo

$80 ($76 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. April 19, 1:30 PM – 5:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Bluegrass Banjo Mini-Camp: Intermediate/Advanced »

CALLING ALL BLUEGRASS BANJO PLAYERS: Join legendary players and teachers Alan Munde and Bill Evans as they teach two 75-minute workshops and lead a jam and final Q&A with all students before their evening concert. You don’t want to miss this!

IntermediateProgram: Banjo

$80 ($76 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. April 19, 2:00 PM – 3:20 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Andean Stringed Instruments with Illapu »

Learn songs for and learn about Andean stringed instruments, such as the 12-metal-stringed tiple from Colombia, the cavaquinho from the Northeast of Brazil, the Venezuelan cuatro and Bolivian charango.

Open to AllProgram:

$5 ($4 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. April 19, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Frank Hamilton Reception: Remembering our Roots »

Open to AllProgram: Administrative

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Mon. April 20, 7:30 PM – 8:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Andean Melodic Wind Instruments with Illapu »

Learn the music of Andean melodic wind instruments, such as zampoñas (panpipes), and quenas (Andean flute) in this workshop with resident aritsts from Chile’s Illapu.

Open to AllProgram:

$5 ($4 members)

REGISTER NOW
Tue. April 21, 8:30 PM – 9:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Chilean and AfroCaribbean Drumming with Illapu »

Learn the rhythms of African djembe and kultrun of the Mapuche people of southern Chile as well as Afro-Caribbean music using congas, cajón, and kit drums in this workshop with resident aritsts from Chile’s Illapu.

Open to AllProgram: Drumming

$5 ($4 members)

REGISTER NOW
Thu. April 23, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Instrument Primer: Banjo »

Music store staff will teach you all you need to know about taking care of a banjo you already own and show you what to look for when buying your first banjo!

Open to AllProgram: Banjo

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. April 23, 7:00 PM – 8:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Go-Go Dance Workshop »

Join this fun and all-inclusive dance workshops to learn steps and a combination you can do anywhere, to rock or pop music!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$15 ($14 members)

REGISTER NOW
Thu. April 23, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Jazz as a Common Language »

Visiting artist Oscar Penas invites musicians of all instruments to join this fun exploration of composing and playing jazz together. Don’t miss it!

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. April 24, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Advanced Modern Dance »

Join us as Joanna Rosenthal Read, Artistic Director of Same Planet Different World Dance Theatre, teaches an exciting new Advanced Modern class!

AdvancedProgram: Dance

$10 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. April 25, 2:00 PM – 3:20 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Martha Redbone’s Southeastern Traditional Singing Workshop »

Join visiting performing artist Martha Redbone for this one-time workshop exploring Southeastern intertribal singing from Cherokee and Choctaw nations and discussion with Martha. Open to ALL voices!

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Thu. April 30, 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
We Got Rhythm – And So Do You! »

Join this workshop in making joyously rhythm-charged body music with Chicago’s “miracle of inventive energy,” JUMP RHYTHM Jazz Project! Taught by Billy Siegenfeld, JUMP RHYTHM Jazz Project’s Artistic Director.

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$15 ($14 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. May 01, 9:30 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Advanced Modern Dance »

Join us as Joanna Rosenthal Read, Artistic Director of Same Planet Different World Dance Theatre, teaches an exciting new Advanced Modern class!

AdvancedProgram: Dance

$10 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. May 01, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Gather-All »

Join the jam! You don't have to be in a class at Old Town School to join this music-making experience for all ages.

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Ensemble

$5 ($5 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. May 01, 7:00 PM – 9:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Words & Music: The Songwriters’ Circle »

The song’s the thing; the words and the music - the fingerprint - we live and learn - sing and dance, and listen... and enrich one another along the way! Come share your song, new or old, all-done or somewhere in between. Listen and respond to the work of your peers in a supportive and creative community of artists. Bring your voice and what you play on (we have a piano, so you don't have to bring one of those). We meet (mostly) each month for THE SOCIAL - Words & Music: The Songwriters’ Circle.

Open to AllProgram:

$10 ($7 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. May 01, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL: Pop-Up Choir »

Folks of all singing levels are welcome to come together and experience the joy of harmony singing - to pop music! We'll start with some vocal warmups and harmony singing exercises. Then, we'll all learn a couple of modern pop tunes arranged for vocal harmony. Can't read music? Totally new to singing? No problem, join us! Andrea Bunch has been teaching music and singing for 15 years. She creates a fun atmosphere where people can make music, have some fun, and learn a thing or two.

Open to AllProgram:

$15 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 02, 1:00 PM – 2:45 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
12th St. Rag/Rockin the Uke: Roy Smeck Repertoire with Marcy Marxer »

Learn these 2 classics by Roy Smeck, “The Wizard of the Strings” taught to Marcy by the master himself. Includes right hand tricks and techniques.

IntermediateProgram: Ukulele

$35 ($33 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 02, 1:00 PM – 2:45 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Cathy Fink’s Drills for Clawhammer Banjo to Improve Your Playing »

Visiting clawhammer celebrity and Old Town School friend Cathy Fink shares her tips and tricks for great and nimble playing!

Open to AllProgram: Banjo

$35 ($33 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 02, 3:00 PM – 4:45 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Swing & Jazz Uke Special - Chorded Melody from the American Songbook »

Marcy will teach two classic jazz tunes such as Fly Me To The Moon and Autumn Leaves in the chorded melody styles

IntermediateProgram: Ukulele

$35 ($33 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 02, 3:00 PM – 4:45 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Variations on a Tune: A Banjo Workshop »

How to create variations once you’ve learned a tune on the banjo. Tips, tricks, philosophy and note by note demonstration!

IntermediateProgram: Banjo

$35 ($33 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. May 03, 2:00 PM – 3:50 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Strumming Secrets »

Beginners and pros: Make your rhythm sound more solid in this afternoon workshop.

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 09, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 09, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Swing Dance: Brush-Up Workshop »

Polish your swing dance moves in this two-hour workshop!

IntermediateProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. May 15, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL: Springtime Beatles »

Join us to sing and play songs by the Fab Four, lead by Old Town School teaching artist Tommi Zender. Participants will take home a packet of Beatles songs, along with selected 70’s solo-Beatles bonus tracks mixed in. Get out out of the house, meet people, and play music...It’s spring!

Open to AllProgram:

$15 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 16, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Colin O’Brien’s “Featuring Feet” Workshop »

Want to add a little rhythm to your playing, or just play with rhythm? This unique workshop is open to everyone, whether or not you play an instrument!

Open to AllProgram: Administrative

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 16, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
5-String Banjo Workshop: John Hartford Style »

Bluegrass pickers looking for something a little different will love this unique workshop with visiting Nashville-based artist Colin O’Brien!

IntermediateProgram: Banjo

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 23, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Old Time Banjo: Beyond the Bum-Ditty »

Explore old-time clawhammer banjo with Brad Kolodner, a rising star in the clawhammer banjo world.

IntermediateProgram: Banjo

$30 ($29 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. May 24, 1:00 PM – 2:20 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Somali Song Workshop »

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$5 ($5 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. May 24, 2:30 PM – 3:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Hip-Hop Songbuilding Workshop »

Poets, lyricists, vocalists, instrumentalists! Join London-based Poetic Pilgrimage to learn how they craft their unique sound, and be inspired to make your own!

Open to AllProgram: Administrative

$5 ($5 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. May 31, 2:00 PM – 3:50 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Effect Pedals and Electronics for Guitars »

The modern guitar is not just a guitar and amp any more!

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 05, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Gather-All »

Join the jam! You don't have to be in a class at Old Town School to join this music-making experience for all ages.

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Ensemble

$5 ($5 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 05, 7:00 PM – 9:50 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Words & Music: The Songwriters’ Circle »

The song’s the thing; the words and the music - the fingerprint - we live and learn - sing and dance, and listen... and enrich one another along the way! Come share your song, new or old, all-done or somewhere in between. Listen and respond to the work of your peers in a supportive and creative community of artists. Bring your voice and what you play on (we have a piano, so you don't have to bring one of those). We meet (mostly) each month for THE SOCIAL - Words & Music: The Songwriters’ Circle.

Open to AllProgram:

$10 ($7 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 05, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL: Pop-Up Choir »

Folks of all singing levels are welcome to come together and experience the joy of harmony singing - to pop music! We'll start with some vocal warmups and harmony singing exercises. Then, we'll all learn a couple of modern pop tunes arranged for vocal harmony. Can't read music? Totally New to singing? No problem, join us! Andrea Bunch has been teaching music and singing for 15 years. She creates a fun atmosphere where people can make music, have some fun, and learn a thing or two.

Open to AllProgram:

$15 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 05, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL: Songs of Steely Dan »

Mark Vee explores the jazz rock sounds of Steely Dan - covering their great late-60s-1981 era. Bring your axe (or any instrument if you can follow with guitar tabs) and come prepared to play a lot!

Open to AllProgram:

$15 ($10 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. June 06, 3:00 PM – 4:10 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Midwest Masters: “Forked Deer” - Fred Campeau’s Two-Fingered Banjo Version »

Fred Campeau, of old-time stringbands the Volo Bogtrotters and the Money Creek Boys will teach and discuss his unique arrangement of this tune in the first of our Midwest Masters workshops!

Open to AllProgram: Banjo

$20 ($19 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. June 13, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. June 13, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Cajun and Zydeco Dance »

From the steamy Cajun swamp to the dance floor, this partner workshop will allow you to dance to some of the best bands around!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. August 08, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. August 08, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Cajun and Zydeco Dance »

From the steamy Cajun swamp to the dance floor, this partner workshop will allow you to dance to some of the best bands around!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. September 12, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. September 12, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Swing Dance: Brush-Up Workshop »

Polish your swing dance moves in this two-hour workshop!

IntermediateProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. October 10, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. October 10, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Cajun and Zydeco Dance »

From the steamy Cajun swamp to the dance floor, this partner workshop will allow you to dance to some of the best bands around!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. November 14, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. November 14, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Cajun and Zydeco Dance »

From the steamy Cajun swamp to the dance floor, this partner workshop will allow you to dance to some of the best bands around!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. December 12, 1:00 PM – 2:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Dance Basics for Couples »

A great date or first “step” for couples who’d like to feel comfortable and have fun on the dance floor!

Open to AllProgram: Dance

$45 ($43 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. December 12, 3:00 PM – 4:50 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Swing Dance: Brush-Up Workshop »

Polish your swing dance moves in this two-hour workshop!

IntermediateProgram: Dance

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW

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