etc. Music School, a new kind of music and theatrical training experience offering private lessons, ensembles, classes and original productions, opened it's doors in Evanston in August, 2013. The school is dedicated to collaboration, team-learning, and confidence-building through affirming, creative teaching that respects and celebrates each student's unique strengths.
Founder and Artistic Director Mike O'Mara is an Evanston resident and teacher with 15 years teaching experience from ages K-12. He explains that etc. is a new wholistic approach to musical and theatrical education that employs organic, collaborative study and experimentation. "At every level and in everything we do, we involve and respect the students' interests and use those interests to foster motivation towards achieving each young artist's goals," says O'Mara.
The etc. Music School is guided by certain core beliefs; that every child, teen and adult deserves an opportunity to learn and create art in an affirming atmosphere; that everyone can contribute to an arts community; that arts education and participation is a core component of the human experience, and that everyone deserves the opportunity to participate in the training and creation of art regardless of race, religion, economic status, gender, age, or sexual orientation.
etc. Music School offers innovative, original, and exciting programming that stresses student-inspired and student-created original works at every level. The Evanston Teen Choir (grades 7-12) strives to instill a love of vocal music within the ensemble through positive, focused rehearsals and to engage and support the surrounding communities through polished performance of eclectic and challenging repertoire. Course offerings also include private lessons (piano, voice, and composition), the etc. Creators' Workshops (grades 8-12), etc. TinyShows (grades K-2), etc. KidShows (grades 3-6) and etc. Presents, main stage productions of wholly-original musicals created with high-schoolers, for high-schoolers, about topics high-schoolers are interested in.
The name "etc." reflects the school's dedication to providing "more than 'just lessons' for more than 'just students'."