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The Next Generation of Classical Musicians

Founded in 2006, the Music Institute of Chicago Academy is a nationally recognized training center for advanced, pre-college pianists and string players.  The Academy provides a comprehensive musical education for students who aspire to be professional musicians. With the ultimate goal of creating musicians for the 21st century, the Academy provides gifted young musicians with the tools, knowledge, and inspiration to be leaders in classical music performance and education. 

I've always enjoyed my visits to The Academy at the Music Institute of Chicago: the work ethic, intensity, and passion are palpable, and the students' motivation and openness are truly impressive. In short, an inspiring place!

Pamela Frank
Celebrated Violinist and Curtis Institute of Music Faculty

Interested in learning more about the academy?

Please contact Sue Polutnik for more information regarding the Academy curriculum, auditions,
scholarships, or general questions regarding tuition.

Sue Polutnik
Academy Executive Director
Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Music Institute of Chicago

622 Davis Street, 4th Fl
Evanston, IL 60201
847.448.8311

Academy Faculty & Staff

The Music Institute of Chicago is proud of its distinguished faculty members who offer students instruction equal to that anywhere in the world.

Leadership

Sue Polutnik

COO and Academy Executive Director
Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Jim Setapen

Conductor-in-Residence and Academy Artistic Director
Artistic Director of The Academy

Ari Barrack Fisher

Academy Coordinator and Orchestra Manager

Violin

Davis King

Violin & Viola Faculty

Sang Mee Lee

String Department Chair; Violin Faculty; Chamber Music Faculty

Almita Vamos

Violin Faculty

Viola

Davis King

Violin & Viola Faculty

Cello

Dr. Tanya L. Carey

Cello Faculty

Avi Friedlander

Director, Barston Suzuki Center; Suzuki Cello Faculty

Piano

Marta Aznavoorian

Piano Faculty; Artist-in-Residence

Dr. Winston Choi

Piano Faculty

Dr. Matthew Hagle

Piano & Musicianship Faculty; Program Director, Musicianship

Dr. Christina Tio

Suzuki Piano faculty

Chamber Music Coaches

Dr. Mark George

Chamber Music Faculty (Academy)
President and CEO

Dr. Sung Hoon Mo

Piano and Musicianship Faculty
Site Coordinator, Downers Grove

Dr. Inah Chiu

Piano Faculty

Elaine Felder

PIano & Chamber Music Faculty; Piano Department Chair

Claudia Lasareff-Mironoff

Academy Chamber Music Faculty

Dr. Sarah Plum

Violin, Viola, Chamber Music, Academy Faculty

Rodolfo Vieira

Academy Chamber Music Faculty

Paul Zafer

Viola Faculty and Chamber Music Faculty

Music Theory

Debbie Masloski

Academy Music Theory Faculty

Dr. Brian Schoettler

Organ Department Chair

Mischa Zupko

Composition Faculty

Piano Group Classes

Ralph Neiweem

Piano Faculty, Aebersold & Neiweem Duo Piano in Residence

Claire Aebersold Neiweem

Piano Faculty, Aebersold & Neiweem Piano Duo in Residence

Abraham Stokman

Piano Faculty; Improvisation Faculty

Conservatories & Colleges Attended by Graduates

After working with our esteemed artist faculty, Academy students regularly attend the following Conservatories & Colleges.

  • Bienen School of Music, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
  • Cleveland Institute for Music, Cleveland, OH
  • Colburn School, Los Angeles, CA
  • Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia, PA
  • Eastman School of Music, Rochester, NY
  • Jacobs School of Music, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN
  • Juilliard School, New York, NY
  • University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, Ann Arbor, MI
  • New England Conservatory, Boston, MA
  • Oberlin Conservatory, Oberlin College, Oberlin, OH
  • Shepherd School of Music, Rice University, Houston, TX

Artist Advisory Council

The Artist Advisory Council endorses the mission and quality of the Academy program and provides occasional advice and counsel.

  • Richard Aaron – cellist
  • Calidore String Quartet
  • Heidi Castleman – violist
  • Robert Chen – Chicago Symphony Orchestra concertmaster
  • John Corigliano – composer
  • Roberto Diaz – president of Curtis Institute of Music
  • David Finckel – Co-artistic Director, Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society
  • Wu Han – Co-artistic Director, Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society
  • Yehoved Kaplinsky – pianist, Director of Juilliard Pre-College
  • Sel Kardan – president of Colburn Conservatory
  • Ani Kavafian – violinist, professor at Yale University
  • Laurence Lesser – cellist, former President of New England Conservatory
  • Robert Lipsett – professor of Violin at Colburn Conservatory
  • Robert McDonald – pianist, professor at Juilliard and Curtis
  • Midori – violinist
  • Jorge Federico Osorio – pianist, professor at Roosevelt University
  • Pacifica String Quartet
  • Rachel Barton Pine – violinist

Academy Events

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Wednesday, February 21, 2024

No events today.