Note: Many of the city’s most revered music schools
(including several listed below) are members of the New York
City Coalition of Community Schools of the Arts. Consult the
coalition’s Website, nationalguild.org,
and click on “member schools” and “New York”
for individual schools’ contact information.
Bloomingdale School of Music
323 W. 108th St., near Broadway
In Baby’s First Music Class, parents sing, dance, and
explore instruments with their children. For the slightly older
set, there’s Dalcroze Eurythmics and the Suzuki method
for violin, cello, and flute. They also offer private instruction
in piano, guitar, and most band and orchestra instruments. Weekly
group lessons: $425 per seventeen-week semester; private: $646
Broadway Babies and Applause Theatrical
Call 212-472-0703 for locations
Children come here to learn all aspects of acting and musical
theater, from improv to ensemble dance. For kids ages 6 months
to 3 years, there’s the Broadway Babies program ($450),
while the Applause Theatrical Workshops ($750) are aimed at
tweens and teens—don’t be surprised to see the
children of some stars of Broadway and film in these classes.
Brooklyn Conservatory of Music
58 Seventh Ave., at Lincoln Pl., Park Slope, Brooklyn
42-76 Main St., at Blossom Ave., Flushing
With branches in Brooklyn (a 100-year-old mansion) and Queens,
this community music school takes on students 18 months and
older, offering group classes and private instruction in jazz
and classical music. Music Adventures offers toddlers an introduction
to music through dance, painting, storytelling, and play acting.
Weekly group lessons: $55–$395 per sixteen-week semester;
||The Lion & the Lamb
1460 Lexington Ave., near 94th St.
“To-go” knitting, crochet, and needlepoint
tutorials are perfect for days of inclement weather
(or parental laziness). Sign up for, say, “Knitting
à la Carte,” and an expert will arrive
at your home armed with materials—appliqués,
yarn, kid-size needles—and patience. From
$125 per hour.
Brooklyn Music School
126 Saint Felix St., near Hanson Pl., Fort Greene, Brooklyn
The Brooklyn Music School focuses on building confidence and
encouraging kids to think creatively. Offerings in the preschool
division range from creating music to dance games in Creative
Movers (ages 3–5). Older students can partake in the
Preparatory Division’s private lessons, ensembles, and
theory classes. Preschool, $15.50 per class; private lessons,
$32 to $42.
City Music Schools
357 W. 36th St., near Eighth Ave., 3rd fl
CMS offers some of the most affordable private lessons in
the city. Kids ages 3 to 5 (and, in a separate group, 6 and
older) can study everything from piano and violin to folk
harp and zither. All registered students have access to free
practice space, and rentals are available. Private lessons:
four half-hour lessons, $74; seven half-hour lessons, $122.50;
four one-hour lessons, $140.
Do Re Mi
Leanne DeCamp, a professional singer with fourteen years of
teaching experience, works with children up to 4 years old
to lay a foundation for further musical development. Her classes
(up to twelve students) use puppets, dancing, demonstrations
from professional musicians, and, most important, lots of
listening to music without visual stimulation in order to
build attention span. From eight to fifteen weeks at $25 a
Dorothy Delson Kuhn Music Institute
of the J.C.C. of Staten Island
475 Victory Blvd., at Forest Ave., Staten Island
1297 Arthur Kill Rd., near Woodrow Rd., Staten Island
A good bet for students of all abilities, DDKMI offers a traditional
Orff class for kids 3–6, the Musical Moments class for
toddlers and accompanying adults has kids learning to sing,
rhyme, and move to the tune of folk songs. There’s also
an Elementary Vocal Class for kids 6–9. Preschool classes,
$150 per twelve-week semester; private lessons, $21–$40
Greenwich House Music School
46 Barrow St., near Seventh Ave.
Greenwich offers private lessons in instruments such as violin,
piano, and cello to kids starting at age 4; at 7, they can
learn composition, woodwinds, and guitar. Group lessons, $186–$258
per twelve-week semester; private, $432–$576.
Harlem School of the Arts
645 St. Nicholas Ave., at 141st St.
Children 4–8 can take a prep course in pitch, rhythm,
and notation before signing up for more advanced group or
private lessons. HSA offers instruction in orchestral instruments—piano,
guitar, and voice—as well as music theory and ear training,
in Western, African-American, world music, and folk traditions.
Group lessons from $80 for fourteen 30-minute lessons; private
classes from $260 for fourteen 30-minute lessons.
Henry Street Settlement Music School
466 Grand St., at Pitt St.
212-598-0400, ext. 212
Beyond extensive early- childhood music programs (newborns
to age 3) and private and group lessons in most classical
instruments (ages 7 and older), offerings at this Lower East
Side institution include the Suzuki program in violin; jazz
lessons in piano, horns, percussion, guitar, and voice; and
Voices of Henry Street, a choir for kids 8–12 that performs
around the city. Group and private lessons run from $230 to