Chamber Music Program

MYAC prides itself in offering the most comprehensive and personalized Chamber Music Program possible for our students. At just over 60 ensembles, very few programs in the nation are as large as MYAC, and no other youth program has experienced the competitive success that MYAC has had at the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition and other national and local compeititions. MYAC’s chamber groups have also been featured on broadcasts including NPR’s From the Top radio program numerous times, ABC, CBS, Music da Camera, WFMT 98.7 FM, and WFN 720 AM. MYAC recognizes the value of chamber music training at every level and encourages its students to experience the excitement of performing major chamber works in venues across Chicago.

Students in MYAC’s Symphony and Concert Orchestra members are required to participate in MYAC’s Chamber Music Program. When requested, every attempt is made to place interested Philharmonia Orchestra students as well.

Placement in MYAC's Chamber Music-Only Program is made only if space is available.

Chamber Music Program Offerings

MYAC's Chamber Music Program offers trios, quartets, quintets, sextets, septets and octets for most instrumentation combinations. Coached by our expert faculty, students learn standard repertoire and contemporary music through weekly coachings, master classes, and Soiree performances.

MYAC offers three levels at which students can participate in the Chamber Music Program. Tuition information for all of chamber options can be found here:

Classic Chamber Music

  • Receives 24 regular one hour coachings with a member of the MYAC Chamber Music Faculty throughout the year
  • Required to perform on a minimum of one Soiree per semester (2 total per year)
  • Able to participate in competitions and master classes with Director approval

Intensive Chamber Music

  • Receives 30 regular one hour coachings with a member of the MYAC Chamber Music Faculty throughout the year
  • Required to rehearse independently as a group for one hour each week
  • Required to perform on a minimum of two Soirees per semester (4 total per year)
  • Expected to compete in the Discover Chamber Music Competition (entry fee included in Instensive Chamber Music tuition)
  • Receives preference in scheduling for master classes

Sonata Class

MYAC also offers a Sonata Class option for Chamber Music Program placement. Sonata Class is an opportunity for 3-5 students to meet with a coach/pianist and discuss sonata form while working on a sonata piece of their choosing, usually selected in consultation with the student’s private teacher. Sonatas are considered chamber music because there is much more “interplay” between the piano and solo part than between the solo and orchestral part as in a concerto. A single Sonata Class may contain a variety of instruments, which makes for a diverse learning opportunity!
  • Receives 24 regular one hour coachings with a member of the MYAC Chamber Music Faculty throughout the year
  • Required to perform on a minimum of one Soiree per semester (2 total per year)

Chamber Music Policies

For all Chamber Music students, we strongly encourage students to reflect on each Soiree performance wtih their chamber group by watching the recording that is made from each Soiree. Our Orchestra Program Coordinator will post the recordings on MYAC's YouTube so students can get to them easily. For students with multiple absences from Chamber, the following procedure will be followed:
  • After 2 absences: the office will email/notify the student and parents of absences and the absence policy
  • After 3 absences: the office will inform the student and parents that the student must attend all further rehearsals and performances or the student will be replaced
  • After 4 absences: the student will be replaced and there will be no tuition refunds


We offer many opportunities for chamber music ensembles to perform throughout the year. These include Soirees and the Beyond the Fort recitals at Bennett Gordon Hall at Ravinia, the MYAC Center, and different locations throughout the area. These performances are free and open to the public!

Master Classes

Throughout the year MYA students have the opportunity to work with outstanding musicians from all over. Past master class teachers have included:

  • Avalon String Quartet
  • Gavriel Lipkind (Solo Cellist)
  • Illinois Quartet (University of Illinois faculty)
  • Charlie Pikler (Chicago Symphony Orchestra)
  • N-E-W Trio (2008 Fischoff Winners)
  • Alice Schoenfeld (Professor Emerita of Violin, University of Southern California)
  • Barbara Butler (Chicago Chamber Musicians)
  • Rami Solomonow (Chicago Chamber Musicians)
  • Wycliffe Gordon (Jazz Trombonist)
  • Carrie Dennis (Berlin Philharmonic)
  • John Bruce Yeh (Chicago Symphony Orchestra)

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