Midwest Young Artists

Rating: 4.94 stars   86 reviews

Issues: Arts & Culture

Location: 878 Lyster Rd Highwood IL 60040 USA

Mission: "To Build a Home with the Power of Music to Enrich the Lives of our Students and Community"
Results: MYA has gone from a single orchestra with 50 members and rented spaces in 1993, to an organization that now serves over 1,000 young people annually with a permanent rehearsal space in Highwood, Illinois that houses 9 orchestras, 65+ chamber ensembles, dozens of Jazz ensembles including combos and Big Bands, a wind symphony, choral ensembles, early childhood education classes, music theory & history classes, festivals, summer camps, and national concerto & chamber competitions.
Geographic areas served: 74 Communities in Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana
Programs: Orchestra, Wind Symphony, Jazz Combos & Ensembles, Big Band, Chamber Ensembles, Early Childhood Music & Movement, Choral Program, Music Theory, Summer Music Programs
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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EIN 23-7179740
847-926-9898
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Community Reviews

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

My daughter is graduating after 10 years in MYA. She and I have grown over this time, and MYA became a material part of our lives. MYA doesn't just teach music. They teach music well. But they also teach our children character, discipline, compassion, cooperation, and a desire to excel without hurting others. Through the years I have heard parents from other music programs, who came to MYA extol its virtues. Their children became part of a team. While competitive, the young musicians are taught the larger lessons on what is takes to be a successful human. MYA's best advertisement of its success is its battalion of alumni who still cherish their time with MYA, still come back to visit and participate, and serve on its young professionals board.

As my daughter goes off to college to study music and business, I will continue to participate in and support MYA's activities because it's that important of an organization for young people.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Double its physical facilities so it could serve more young musicians.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

 
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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

My daughter had already been in the program for two years when I began taking her to weekly Saturday morning practices with one of the orchestras at Midwest Young Artists. I have been actively involved for decades in public service, including government and volunteer organizations. I've also worked for decades with not-for-profits. Unequivocally, none has rivaled what I found at Midwest Young Artists.

Over the past few years, I have watched with amazement at all the good MYA produces. Young musicians readily become committed to working, practicing, and meeting individual challenges. They are part of a team, but they also recognize their individual involvement in achieving the end result. They are eager to participate, not forced to do so. When a young musician advances within his or her orchestra or to a more advanced orchestra or chamber group, he or she knows that it's not because of the politics of a parent's involvement or a monetary contribution - it's because the child or young adult earned the advancement by his or her own hard work and dedication. As the children advance into their teens, you can see the deepening of their friendships, work ethic, commitment, and, importantly, confidence. This is an earned confidence that the youth carries with himself or herself for life.

Similarly, you can observe and support each child's development through the years. There's an excitement each Fall as the youths return from summer for a reconvening of the academic year. It's like watching a championship team develop anew each season.

The parents do not tend towards cliques. New parents are welcomed and established families develop friendships. Most of work does not fall upon a small few to accomplish. Rather parents readily volunteer to help and be part of the success of the organization. Because so many are willing to help, the work for all is more enjoyable.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Watching the children grow through the programs; managing backstage logistics; volunteering at numerous events; serving on MYA's board of directors.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

expand the size of the facilities to accommodate more participants.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

How did you learn about this organization?

Through my wife and daughter.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Review from Guidestar
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I was first introduced to MYA in 1999 when I brought my first chamber ensemble from Columbus, Ohio to the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. I was so impressed by the MYA student support in the audience to those performing on the stage. They cheered each other and genuinely showed care and respect for each ensemble. Over the years, our friendship grew at each Fischoff competition with the students from MYA, as well as from all over the USA, competing in this prestigious competition and then at the Discover National Chamber Music Competition. What a wonderful event MYA has created to support young artists enjoying the process of making chamber music together! The past few years, over 60 students, friends, and family from CMC (Chamber Music Connection) have traveled to the Chicago area to participate or observe this marvelous event hosted by MYA. Approximately three years ago, I was invited to teach at the MYA Chamber Music Summer Institute. They greet the artists, the students, and the staff with open arms showing great respect and gratitude for each musical milestone accomplished. The MYA organization is a model for other nonprofits to look up to and to learn from. Bravo MYA! Keep up the great work!

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

This organization inspires young people to be and do their best. MYA is a home where music students can reach far beyond their comfort zone and feel like they have a safety net. Continually striving for excellence in music performance, students support each other in the attempt.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Midwest Young Artists is a place full of inspiration. It goes above and beyond many organizations whose mission is solely great musicianship (though that is a worthy goal); their mission is to build a home. And in that, they are a pillar for their community.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Midwest Young Artists is a wonderful institution. As a parent and an arts administrator myself, I stand in awe of the opportunities the program affords young musicians. It doesn't matter if a student is wildly talented or just enjoys making music for its own sake, all are treated as family members. The school's ensembles attract a wonderfully human and sharing group of young people. My daughter has been heard to remark that she wished her regular school was just like MYA.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

MYA is an incredible program for children to have the absolute best instruction when it comes to classical music.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I started performing with MYA when I was in middle school and continued in the program through my high school graduations. I can't even count the hours in a car that I spent driving to MYA rehearsals and concerts for the 6 years that I was in the program.

The programs at MYA allow students not only to grow as musicians, but also as a community. It is a safe, exciting avenue to creatively express and learn music, that I will never forget.

As a music teacher I draw great inspiration from what I learned in my tenure at MYA, and was excited when I was able to have my own students become a part of the program.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As a student in the program, it helped prepare me to become an orchestra teacher. As a teacher the students who I send to MYA develop into leaders in my orchestra program.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None

 
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Review from Guidestar
Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

I am an alum, employee, donor, and teacher at Midwest Young Artists (MYA). This organization is a huge part of my life! I cannot imagine being part of something better then MYA. As a student, MYA provided such amazing experiences and challenges for me as a young violinist. I acted as co-concert master in our 10 year anniversary concert, I toured Europe, I competed in competitions, and I made lifelong friends. As an employee, I am always faced with new and exciting challenges and responsibilities that are always rewarding when I see my efforts evolve. Most recently, a benefit concert for the Ronald McDonald House Charities at Harris Theater. As a teacher, I watch my students grow and become great little musicians in such a nurturing atmosphere. It is truly a rewarding experience!!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Myself and my students.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I love that we have alumni working in the office - I think it helps with the communication and organization since they already know how it works - keep 'em coming!!

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Midwest Young Artists is an organization that provides excellent adjunct programming for students studying music that require additional stimulation not provided in their school situation. Students meet weekly with dedicated faculty who are committed to creating an environment of excellence. What makes Midwest Young Artists different from other programs is the commitment to core educational values which are presented in a supportive manner. They develop a wonderful camaraderie with other students which lasts well into adulthood.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

attending concerts in which my students play. I am also on the board of directors.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

strengthen the theory program and make it a requirement for all students.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

What is unique about this organization?

Their commitment to excellence while focusing on educational goals.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

 
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