Why Music? The effects of learning and playing music at a young age reaches into all areas of a child’s development; emotional growth, social skills, academic success and self confidence are just a few of the areas profoundly affected by the study of music. Research conducted shows that the positive effects of music education don’t compare to any other field of study. (For an example of some research, click here.) But more importantly, we have personally witnessed this transformation in dozens of our students: from immense growth in emotional stability, healthy work-ethic, increasing self-worth and social confidence, every child and their family benefits in multiple ways from learning how to play music. We believe that music is one of the most profound tools that we have to connect to other human beings, the world around us, and our creator. We are proud to share this with the Jewish community through the Chamber Encounters Music Academy and Baltimore Bows programming.
Please take a moment to read and understand our program information, schedules/pricing and FAQs. We are very excited about the classes we have to offer, and look forward to teaching your children and possibly you as well!
Click here to register!
Baltimore Bows Beginner Program
Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5 pm - 6:30 pm
A music program designed to give your child an unforgettable year that will reverberate into all areas of his/her life. Children will experience the benefits of playing an instrument and gain skills that can be applied no matter where life takes them. They will develop in areas of teamwork, achieving goals and ability for creative self-expression that will always remain with them. Your child will learn how to confidently play his/her instrument of choice, perform in concerts, play in solo and small group settings, and learn from the life-enriching experience of working together as a team in an orchestra. Our teachers are world-class performers and truly believe in your kids. By building confidence, focus, healthy work ethics, creating a foundation for problem solving, math skills, and goal setting, you will be blown away by what they can accomplish in a year both on and away from their musical instruments! Click here to see how our students progressed in their year of completing the Baltimore Bows program.
Format Considerations: The Baltimore Bows program provides group instruction. Most Baltimore Bows parents augment participation with private lessons (see below) so their children progress more quickly. Group instruction requires students to sit quietly and listen to/watch a teacher give a lesson, then practice as a group. If this educational format is not optimal for your child, please consider private lessons or Chamber Music Coaching (explained below).
Tuition Includes: group instruction on your child’s specific instrument (either violin, viola or cello), instrument rental, orchestral instruction (violin, viola and cello learning how to play together all at once).
Your child will:
Develop an appreciation of classical music
Learn how to collaborate with a group of peers on a complex project
Gain confidence through solo and group performances
Build foundational skills of music playing including but not limited to: reading music, music history and theory, instrument care and upkeep, performing classical and Jewish compositions, composition, performing in group and solo settings, conducting, and group collaboration.
Attend master classes and student/teacher performances, rhythm and composition workshops and other skill-building classes
Develop an appreciation for the results that come through practice and commitment
More easily participate in a musical instruction program that respects the Jewish calendar.
Cost: $120/month (10 monthly payments) +$50 non-refundable registration fee
All ages (Children and adults)
½ hour, 45 mins, or 1 hour sessions (scheduled directly with instructors)
Private music lessons are one-on-one sessions with a Chamber Encounters instructor. All our instructors are world-class performers, experienced and patient music teachers, familiar with the Jewish community, and “menches.” (Read more about them here.) We are proud to have such gifted staff working for CEMA and giving your children the benefit of their knowledge! Private lessons can be your only venue for musical instruction or they can build on any other musical instruction program to more quickly develop confidence and proficiency.
You or Your Child Will:
Progress through the best of the Suzuki method and other supplementary repertoire, gaining proficiency with ever more complex musical selections.
Benefit from individual attention as they unlock the secrets of great musical performance (music reading, correct body positioning while playing, injecting feeling into the notes, etc.)
Develop accountability by creating and maintaining a practice schedule that is apparent as they make progress (or don’t) with each lesson.
Create a customized schedule with your instructor to meet the needs of your busy family.
Includes: Packages include specified number of lessons for designated amount at location and time determined by you and your instructor to fit your scheduling needs.
Chamber Music Coaching
Small groups of 2-6 musicians
30 sessions (full year)
Regular weekly time
45 mins each session (scheduled directly with instructors)
Chamber Music Coaching offers an exhilarating experience for intermediate and advanced musicians. Professional musicians love playing and performing in a small group because it combines the joy and responsibility of playing a solo part with the excitement of collaborating with other talented musicians In the beginning of the year. Instructors will select appropriate works for the proficiency of the Chamber group, then through practice and private lessons, the students will move into more advanced works as they develop a performance repertoire. Then, students will bring joy to audiences through Baltimore Bows and CEMA end of year concerts, and periodic performances at at senior residence centers and other chesed organizations.
Format Considerations: Because chamber music students have been playing for at least 1 year, these groups can progress quickly in proficiency, creating a much more engaging environment than a large group lesson. Students in chamber music groups receive a significant amount of individual attention and playing time, often a good choice for children that struggle to participate in larger, slower group environments. This approach is also great for families that prefer a single-gender performance group, would like to perform as a family, or are managing a complicated school schedule (since sessions are scheduled directly between the Chamber Group and its instructor).
Your Child Will:
Advance their musical proficiency through Coaching Sessions, Private Lessons & solo or group Practice.
Build responsibility and collaboration skills by being a valued contributor to a team
Experience the exhilaration of small group performance
Bring joy to others through performances at retirement homes & other chesed organizations
Tuition Includes: Packages include specified number of coachings for designated amount at location and time determined by you, your other group members, and your instructor.
Tuesday 6:30 pm - 8 pm
2nd year of playing and up
Playing in orchestra is about coming together, melding your own musical voice with others, listening, responding, and having fun! Students have the opportunity to develop superior collaboration skills (listening, following, working together, etc) as they work to make each piece beautiful. Since the orchestra will include both intermediate and advanced musicians, less advanced students have an opportunity to be inspired by the skill and dedication of more advanced players, while more advanced musicians become mentors for the intermediate players, working together to create a beautiful performance. Achieving musical unity is incredible to watch and even more incredible to be a part of - we are often told that CEMA and Baltimore Bows students have orchestral skills that are better than some university students studying music! (See an example of how our orchestra students can play even without a conductor here.)
Format Considerations: CEMA Orchestra provides group instruction. Orchestra participants should augment the group program with private lessons so their children can develop a more advanced individual repertoire and progress more quickly. Group instruction requires students to sit quietly and listen to/watch a teacher give a lesson, then practice as a group. If this educational format is not optimal for your child, please consider private lessons or Chamber Music Coaching .
Your Child Will:
Develop superior collaboration skills, adding to and learning from their peers
Experience the exhilaration of musical unity
Deepen their musical education through workshops on music history, theory, conducting and composing
Tuition Includes: Orchestral music education (history, theory, excursions, conducting, and other workshops), instrument rental, instrument specific group sectionals, master classes
Schedule & Pricing
Click here to register!
There are 3 steps to registration:
1. Fill out your program registration form:
Baltimore Bows here
CEMA (Private lessons, Chamber Music and Girls Orchestra) here
2. Pay the $50 application fee to hold your place (non-refundable)
3. Decide on your tuition payment method via the bottom of the registration page here (please note that both early bird discounts and payment plans with post-dated checks are available.)
Refund/Cancellation Policy: Our pricing is for a full year of programming/lessons. We understand that full year can be a large commitment for families. If you anticipate that your child might not want to continue onto the second semester starting in January, you must let us know by December 15th and we will refund you the remainder of the year’s tuition minus a $30 administration and processing fee. We MUST know by December 15th so we can adjust our programming and teacher/employee hours. If your child is acting less motivated than you had hoped, please wait until close to the deadline to let us know about your decision. Our experience has shown us that the majority of kids that struggle are then incredibly motivated and inspired by performing in the Chanukah concert, and end up continuing and becoming some of our best pupils. This year’s concert is on December 10th, so our December 15th deadline gives you enough time to make the best decision for your child.
Baltimore Bows Beginner Program
1 school year
1.5 hours 2x a week (Tues and Thurs)
$120/month (10 monthly payments)
1 school year
2 hours once a week
Prices depend on package
30 sessions of 45 mins once a week
Prices depend on package
30, 45, or 60 min lessons
(for lessons with teacher coming to your home added charge of $13/month)
Prices depend on package
Please note that for those signing up for only private lessons, the Chamber Encounters free instrument loan is depending on availability with priority going to those in orchestra and chamber music.
A year is a long time! What if my child doesn’t want to continue for the full year?
We understand that full year can be a large commitment for families. If you anticipate that your child might not want to continue onto the second semester starting in January, you must let us know by December 15th and we will refund you the remainder of the year’s tuition minus a $30 administration and processing fee. We MUST know by December 15th so we can adjust our programing and teacher/employee hours. If your child is acting less motivated than you had hoped, please wait until close to the deadline to let us know about your decision. Our experience has shown us that the majority of kids that struggle are then incredibly motivated and inspired by performing in the Chanukah concert, and end up continuing and becoming some of our best pupils. This year’s concert is on December 10th, so our December 15th deadline gives you enough time to make the best decision for your child.
Where will classes be located?
3219 Northbrook Rd. If you would like private lessons and have your teacher come to your house, there is an extra $5 charge per lesson to cover their travel costs.
My child doesn’t know which instrument he/she wants to play. What should I do?
We actually prefer that your child comes to the first class of Baltimore Bows without knowing which instrument he/she wants to play. Our first class is devoted to learning about, demonstrating, and choosing instruments. Each child is different and almost all our students have found that they gravitate particular a certain instrument on that first day.
How do I pay?
Please register and pay here. Read the instructions carefully so we can hold your place! On the sign up sheet, please see tuition discounts for early payments of the full year’s tuition. Payments via Paypal and credit card will have an added 2.9% to cover Paypal fees. If you want to split payments, you may do so with post dated checks. Checks and all other forms of payment must be submitted on or before the first day of classes.
What do you recommend for my child who wants to seriously continue playing after his/her first year?
For a full and well-rounded music education for your child, we highly recommend taking private lessons, chamber music coachings and orchestra together at the same time. All of these skills are necessary to be a well rounded musician, and all professionals are trained in each of these areas. The different training that your child will receive from doing all of these will allow them to reach their full potential and develop into a well-rounded as a musician.
Which lesson length do you recommend for my child?
This depends on your child’s age and attention span. We find that younger children do better with shorter lessons and older children do better with hour long lessons. A full hour allows you to get so much more done and really build skills and solidify muscle memory but can be draining for those that might not be able to focus for that long a time. A half hour lesson is can often feel short and unsatisfactory for both teacher and student when the student wants to accomplish more. In general, we do not recommend hour long lessons for children under the age of 8.
Why does the Baltimore Bows program have a starting age of 7?
We have tried accepting younger students and every time we made an exception, that student ended up dropping out and re-entering the program at the age of 7. There is a significant difference in the language and techniques used to teach younger children regarding attention span and physical ability. If you child is under the age of 7 and interested in taking music lessons we highly recommend them taking private lessons and then entering the CEMA orchestra (skipping the Baltimore Bows program altogether) when he/she is of the right age.
Why are your prices higher now than when the Baltimore Bows program started?
When the Baltimore Bows program started in 2014, we were completely supported by BTEC, another non profit, which provided free instruments for all students, covered administrative costs, all teaching supplies, and rehearsal space at no charge for us. The tuition that parents paid when we started was only to cover teacher pay. When BTEC closed its doors, we were told we would have to stop our program. Due to popular demand we decided to take the leap in order to keep programing available and started the Baltimore Bows and Chamber Encounters Music Academy as a non-profit to continue offering music education to the Baltimore Jewish community. We have had over 100 students in our program with heightening demand to start a new large beginner class every year plus retaining our current students. The cost of our program is directly affected by these expenses, and our tuition is significantly less than comparable programs elsewhere. We work hard to keep the tuition affordable.
Do you offer scholarships?
Yes. To apply please send a letter of intent to