“I'm too old to...”
At The Shedd Institute, that excuse doesn’t cut it as a reason not to explore something that has always intrigued you. Our response is, “It’s never too late.” OK, it probably is too late to make it to Carnegie Hall – but, honestly, is that your reason for wanting to make music?
Perhaps 2% of all music students go on to be professionals. That’s great. But the other 98% get to consider themselves life-long music-makers who do it because they enjoy it. There are some adults who have never stopped playing, either for themselves or with others. But a vast majority of us have put that clarinet, violin, or cello in a closet “for later”, “when I have time”, or “after the kids are gone”. Still others have a particular instrument in mind that they have always wanted to try but didn’t know how to find one or an instructor.
Cello, for example, is one that adults seem to gravitate to. It has such a gorgeous tone. It’s portable, and it can be played solo or in large or small groups. Nationally known educator John Holt’s book It’s Never Too Late describes his personal journey in picking up the cello as an adult. “Extreme cellist” Yo Yo Ma comments, “The beauty of Holt’s book is that he himself set his own standards for music making. The reason for playing music is not to compare yourself to anyone but to bring forth what is inside of you.”
If you aren’t sure which instrument you would like pick up, we suggest creating your own “Music Box” set of lessons. Try a month of lessons on piano, then cello, then harmonica or banjo, and find what fits for you. We have instruments you can use, so that you don’t have to invest in one until you are ready to choose.
We also offer need-based scholarships and are especially pleased to announce a gift from the Professional Women’s Forum to support a woman coming back to enrich her life through music-making. 25% of current Shedd students are adults – and they are having a blast! We hope you will join them as your New Year’s resolution!!