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!

Thu. April 27, 7:00 PM – 8:20 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Sabar Dance Workshop »

Sabar is a traditional dance from Senegal, West Africa. This dynamic style incorporates rhythmic combinations of jumping, hip twisting, high-knee lifting, and arm swinging and is always accompanied by crisp snapping drum rhythms played by live drummers. This complex, high-energy dance is known to get people hooked. Come learn the basics with longtime Old Town School dance faculty member and Senegal native, Idy Ciss.

IntermediateProgram: Dance

$20 ($19 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. April 28, 10:30 AM – 10:55 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Demonstration Class - Free! »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms
Class is full.
Fri. April 28, 11:00 AM – 11:25 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Demonstration Class - Free! - Meet The Instruments »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

FREE!

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Fri. April 28, 7:30 PM – 9:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Barn Dance! »

Join the Fiddle Club of the World for a Barn Dance! Square dances for all, with fun calls and friendly instruction by Paul Tyler. Music by the Fiddle Club Orchestra. No experience or partner necessary. Bring your friends.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$10 ($10 members)

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Sat. April 29, 3:00 PM – 4:20 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Washboard Workshop: “Grab A Board & Rub” »

For those looking to follow up on last month’s workshop and new folks, too! Become a washboard percussionist in this engaging workshop led by washboard wizard Barb Silverman. Hands-on skills will cover basic four-count rhythm patterns common to jug band, swing, old-time, and cajun/zydeco.

Open to AllProgram: Drumming

$25 ($24 members)

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Fri. May 05, 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Words and Music: The Songwriter’s Circle »

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.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$10 ($7 members)

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Fri. May 05, 7:30 PM – 9:30 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: Guitar

$15 ($10 members)

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Sun. May 07, 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Poised for Performance - Intro to the Alexander Technique »

Is your body disconnected from your singing? Do you want fuller, easier breathing? Do you suffer from stage fright? Has poor posture or chronic body tension been getting in the way of your freedom and expression as a vocalist? The Alexander Technique has helped people connect to their body and breath, to relieve stress, and to reduce unnecessary tension for over a century. Bring your sense of play and curiosity, and don’t miss the opportunity to experience this work usually available only on the conservatory level!

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$30 ($28 members)

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Sun. May 07, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Big Bill Broonzy Guitar Instrumentals - Part II »

1920s and ‘30s blues guitar players were known for including exciting instrumentals in their repertoire. These fingerpicking instrumentals showcased the virtuosity of the guitar and kept the party going all night long. Chicago’s Big Bill Broonzy was no exception. In this workshop Eric will break down Broonzy’s instrumental the Guitar Rag Eric will explore Broonzy’s right hand technique that gives the song it’s driving rhythm.

IntermediateProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

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Tue. May 09, 8:00 PM – 10:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Prince Ensemble Master Class »

Join Cassandra O’Neal, keyboardist, vocalist, and former member of Prince’s New Power Generation band for this exciting master class. Become a band for the evening and jam out to your favorite Prince songs under Cassandra’s guidance. In addition to helping participants hone in on their inner funkiness, she’ll share personal anecdotes of what it was like to work closely with the man himself.

IntermediateProgram: Ensemble

$40 ($38 members)

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Wed. May 10, 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Songwriting: The Political is Personal »

These turbulent times call for good, new political songs! In this hands-on workshop we’ll learn techniques for translating our passion for social issues into powerful songs that hit our listeners on a gut level.

Open to AllProgram: Songwriting

$40 ($40 members)

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Wed. May 10, 7:00 PM – 8:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Remembering Prince: Songs and Stories »

Join Cassandra O’Neal, vocalist, keyboardist, and core member of Prince’s New Power Generation band for this special offering. During the first part of the workshop, Cassandra will lead the group in vocal arrangements of a few Prince classics. Later, she will share stories about her experiences as a member of his band and take questions from participants. Join us to celebrate Prince’s life and legacy!

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$30 ($29 members)

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Sat. May 13, 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Harmony Singing »

For those looking to follow up on last month’s workshop and new folks, too! For you who always wanted to sing harmony, and for those who want to expand your ability, come on to this easy yet delightfully challenging Harmony Singing Workshop with songstress Barb Silverman.

Open to AllProgram: Voice

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 20, 4:00 PM – 4:45 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Drop-In Class: Exceptional Wiggleworms! »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$20 ($20 members)

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Thu. May 25, 8:30 PM – 10:00 PM · 4544 N Lincoln Ave
Argentine Folk Music with Pampero Sur »

Explore folk music of the “Southern Cone” of South America with Belen Mackinlay and her group, Pampero Sur in this unique workshop on the day after their World Music Wednesday performance. Participants will learn about a variety of different folk music styles from Argentina like zamba and chacarera. The group will cover the origins, rhythms and melodies that are unique to these styles.

Open to AllProgram: Ensemble

$30 ($29 members)

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Sat. May 27, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Son Jarocho: Guitarra de Son »

Join the world renowned group, Son de Madera, direct from Veracruz, Mexico for this special workshop in Son Jarocho music. This workshop will focus on the methods and melodies associated with the guitarra de son or requinto.

Open to AllProgram: Ensemble

$25 ($24 members)

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Sat. May 27, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Son Jarocho: Jarana »

Join the world renowned group, Son de Madera, direct from Veracruz, Mexico for this special workshop in Son Jarocho music. This workshop will focus on the jarana, a baroque style guitar indigenous to Veracruz in addition to the singing styles of Son Jarocho.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. May 27, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Son Jarocho: Leona (bass) »

Join the world renowned group, Son de Madera, direct from Veracruz, Mexico for this special workshop in Son Jarocho music. This workshop will focus on the methods and melodies for stand up bass or the leona (tener guitarra de son).

Open to AllProgram: Bass

$25 ($24 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 02, 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Words and Music: The Songwriter’s Circle »

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.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$10 ($7 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. June 03, 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Jazz Guitar and Bass Clinic »

Join renowned jazz musicians, Steve Cardenas on guitar and Ben Allison on bass for this for this special clinic exploring the art of the duo.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$30 ($28 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sat. June 10, 4:00 PM – 4:45 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Drop-In Class: Exceptional Wiggleworms! »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$20 ($20 members)

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 9:30 AM – 10:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

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Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Art in the Moment: Modern Portraits »

Open to AllProgram: Art

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
ilLUMAnationations: Art ilLUMAnating the Spirit with Natasha Ritsma »

Open to AllProgram: Art

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Memory Singers: Workshop »

Open to AllProgram: Voice

FREE!

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Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Rhythmicity »

Open to AllProgram: Drumming

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Memory Ensemble: An Improvisational Theatre Experience with Christine Mary Dunford and Lauren Dowden »

Open to AllProgram: Theater

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Parkinson’s Project: An Adaptive Dance Class with Michelle Modrzrewski »

Open to AllProgram: Dance

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:00 AM – 11:30 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Art in the Moment: Modern Portraits »

Open to AllProgram: Art

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Memory Singers: Workshop »

Open to AllProgram: Voice

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Rhythmicity »

Open to AllProgram: Drumming

$196 ($186 members)

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Memory Ensemble: An Improvisational Theatre Experience with Christine Mary Dunford and Lauren Dowden »

Open to AllProgram: Theater

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
The Parkinson’s Project: An Adaptive Dance Class with Michelle Modrzrewski »

Open to AllProgram: Dance

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:30 AM – 12:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 12:00 PM – 12:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 10:30 PM – 11:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Video Family Biographies with Robert Jordan »

Open to AllProgram:

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Thu. June 15, 11:30 PM – 12:30 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
ilLUMAnationations: Art ilLUMAnating the Spirit with Natasha Ritsma »

Open to AllProgram: Art

FREE!

REGISTER NOW
Fri. June 16, 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Robben Ford Guitar Clinic »

Robben’s clinic focuses on chord building and music theory for Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced guitarists using blues to teach creative fretboard skills. A morning presentation will emphasize Harmony & Improvisation. After Lunch (not included) Composition and Creativity will be the topics of attention. We will then subdivide the groups into ensembles for some hands-on work. Closing up the day, we will assemble for further discussion and feedback.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$200 ($200 members)

REGISTER NOW
Fri. July 07, 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
THE SOCIAL - Words and Music: The Songwriter’s Circle »

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.

Open to AllProgram: Guitar

$10 ($7 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. July 23, 4:00 PM – 4:45 PM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Drop-In Class: Exceptional Wiggleworms! »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$20 ($20 members)

REGISTER NOW
Sun. August 13, 10:00 AM – 10:45 AM · 4545 N Lincoln Ave
Wiggleworms Drop-In Class: Exceptional Wiggleworms! »

Open to AllKids Group Class – Program: Wiggleworms

$20 ($20 members)

REGISTER NOW

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