Music Institute of Chicago Virtuoso Strings

Music Institute of Chicago Virtuoso Strings

Fridays: 5:30 – 7:00 pm

Director: Julie Bickel

Location: Wheaton, IL

Audition Deadline: September 25, 2021
Begins: October 1, 2021

Tuition: $260/semester


The Music Institute of Chicago Virtuoso Strings is a performing and touring chamber ensemble consisting of 20-30 young performers from the Chicagoland area. This ensemble’s repertoire for concert programs consists primarily of classical music, including the music of Bach, Vivaldi, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, and many others. The repertoire also integrates different styles of music from various ethnic, cultural, and religious traditions.


Audition Levels and Requirements
Entrance into The Music Institute of Chicago Virtuoso Strings is determined by audition and teacher recommendation. The criteria for eligibility into MIC Virtuoso Strings is as follows:


Grade level:  6-12

Book levels:      

Violin: Book 7+

Viola: Book 6+

Cello: Book 7+

Piano: Book 6+


  1. Suzuki Book or supplemental polished piece as determined by your private teacher - to be played from memory and 5 minutes or less.
    2. Write and read a paragraph at the end of the video explaining why you want to be a member of the Music Institute of Chicago Virtuoso Strings.

Submission of Audition Videos

  • Audition videos due 9-25-21. Please submit links to audition videos here.
  • No late videos will be accepted.
  • Private teacher recommendation (to be emailed to the director from the private teacher)

Audition Evaluation

  • Auditions will examine posture, bow hold, bow control, intonation, tone, vibrato, memorization, and musical sensitivity.

Student and Parent Commitment

Students must show initiative, maturity, and independence in:

  • Consistent attendance (one absence/semester with notification permitted)
  • Following directions
  • Learning material (memory work, note-taking, adaptation to new ideas)
  • Commitment to attend all weekly rehearsals
  • Commitment to prepare for and attend performances
  • Parents are required to attend parent meetings three times per semester on Fridays from 7:00-7:30PM.
  • Parents are asked to volunteer on one of the parent board committees.
  • Students must purchase a uniform at the beginning of the semester; cost is approximately $80 - 95.
  • Students are expected to attend the MIC Virtuoso Strings Tour 2022 (summer) and to perform in the Benefit Concert (June 2022, Nichols Concert Hall).
Summer Price: 
Materials Fees: 
Semester Duration: 
6 weeks
Semester Begins: 
September 4, 2021

Summer 2022 Classes

DayTimeStart DateLocationInstructor