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Musical Arts Institute

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Music

Mission: MAI is a nonprofit, 501 c 3, community-minded organization, that assists local schools and other community organizations with goal of providing exceptional music instruction. Through our extensive outreach program, we provide performance opportunities to students to engage in intensified music studies. MAI is located on the south side of Chicago where music lessons are unavailable or unaffordable.

Target demographics: students discover their self expression through the power and disipline of music

Direct beneficiaries per year: 430 students.

Geographic areas served: The South Side Of Chicago

Programs: Private one on one instruction in all instruments and voice. Group instruction in piano and guitar. We also offer a school Orchestra, Jazz combo, Choir and Drum Line (marching percussion ensemble).

Community Stories

45 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been studying as a violinist at the Musical Art Institute for 6 years and I have grown so much as a artist and person since studying there. The attention and instruction I have received as a student has been extremely helpful and meaningful.

Client Served

Rating: 4

I've taken been apart of Musical Arts Institute for about 3 years and it has been a great way to build upon and refine my musical skills. The string ensemble is one of the best black youth chamber groups in Chicago and I'm glad to be apart of it. The teachers here are great and very inspiring. This school certainly is up there rank wise in terms of music schools in Chicago.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Musical Arts Institute has been a great help to me. I have met some of my best friends here and played music with them around the city of Chicago. It has helped me with my life goal of becoming a great musician that travels around the world. Without this school, I would not be the musician that I am today. Musical Arts Institute will always hold a special place in my heart.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have two children that currently take lessons at the Musical Arts Institute. The have been enrolled for three years and have benefited tremendously from the instruction they are receiving. I love the instructors and the relationships they have formed with their teachers, staff, as well as their peers. I highly recommend MAI. The experience has been most enjoyable and opened up wonderful opportunities for our youth.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My son has been taking piano lesson for five years. It's been a great experience working with the Musical Arts Institute. All the instructors are very knowledgeable in their field and supportive to the students. I recommend the school for anyone interested in learning any musical instrument.

Client Served

Rating: 5


The arts play such an important role in the development of our children--their thinking, problem solving, self esteem and even the way they present themselves to the world. Unfortunately, because it is so misunderstood, the arts are also one of the first things to be cut from our schools' curriculum.
The Musical Arts Institute has brought not only an otherwise missing art form to our children, but instills the importance of excellence that translates into all the other areas of their lives--I've seen it in my own child! MAI is a jewel in our community. I hope that they will be here to enrich our children for many years to come!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Musical Arts Institute is an amazing place. The instructors are high quality, caring and sincere.
The teaching artists are involved with the growth and success of the students and school. The school is a gem to the community. Students are encouraged and pushed to excel in the music arts. I am proud to have two children at the school.

Client Served

Rating: 4

My 16 year old took an interest in lead guitar from a video game. I decided to have him take lessons from MAI and and I have known the owner Mike Manson for years as the baddest bass player ever. There was no doubt in my mind that having my son take lessons at MAI would be a great decision. I have not been disappointed and the progress my son has made over the past few months is phenomenal I would recommend this school to anyone who is the least bit interested in music for any instrument and even vocal..

Client Served

Rating: 5

The experience here at the Musical Art Institute has been a most wonderful journey in the music field for my grandson to bring out the musical creativity that is in him. If you are planning or looking for a music school I recommend MAI.
Jacqueline Warford

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Musical Arts Institute really helped me become a much more proficient trombone player and I really needed it especially since I go to ChiArts, which is a performing arts high school here in Chicago. The help I receive from my private lessons teacher helps me with all the music I see from school. Me, family, and friends all noticed improvements in how I play and thats because of my work, but also the environment here at the Musical Arts Institute.

Client Served

Rating: 5

At first I thought I didn't need lessons. I thought that my playing was already at it's peak. But, after coming to the Musical Arts Institute, I learned I was extremely far from what I thought. I learned how difficult it was for me to play with two hands. My teacher Ms. Lindsey helped me improve a lot with using both hands on the piano. But, even with all my experience, simple looking songs were surprisingly difficult to actually play. I was surprised with how much I did not know about playing the piano. I now know that I have learned a lot and still have a lot to learn. I am glad that I came to the Musical Arts Institute to greatly improve my abilities.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have two children taking music lesson with Mr. Manson, the school has helped them a lot in developing their music skills. Mr. Manson is very patient with them and has taught them how to read music, which they did not know prior to attending the school which was done quickly. What I like most about this school is the ability to play all kinds of music. Musical Arts Institute is a great school to attend if you wish to see growth with your child/children they will be groom to be an excellent musician. The school has high expectations for all students. Mr. Manson, shows a lot of concern for the kids and goes out of his way to meet every child needs to make sure they have a pleasant experience at the school. I recommend this school to everyone.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Musical Arts Institute is a Great school for student to learn theory and to become better musician.

Michael291

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter loves music and asked for me to sign her up for voice lessons. The transformation in her once quiet voice, which now fills the room is absolutely amazing. She is learning about technique and her voice as an instrument. The Musical Arts Institute has helped her to gain both confidence and provided for her a nurturing environment to develop her talent. I would highly recommend the school to any parent.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Being a student at Musical Arts Institute for many years now, I have grown so much in regards to learning and experience in the music field. All of the instructors that I have been in contact with have helped me in tremendous way to exceed in music. I have recieved so many opportunities being a part of this organization. I sang with an amazing saxophonist, Kirk Whalm. Along with so many other events I have participated in, above all I have a expanded my horizon as far a music as a whole.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been attending Musical Arts Institute for about 3 and a half years. From the time I started to now, I feel I have truly grown with my musicianship and musical knowledge overall. My music teachers are Ms. Lana Manson and Mr. Michael Manson and they have both been very supportive of me with every lesson. I have learned much repertoire in Italian songs and spirituals in my vocal lessons which helped me get into my dream high school, ChiArts. I have learned scales and bass fitness in my bass guitar lessons. MAI has taught me to be confident and expressive with my music and to just make it my own when I perform. I love the performance opportunities they provide throughout the year. It's a really warm and hardworking place for anyone, any age, wanting to soar in this art. They also are preparing me for college.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have 2 sons that attend the Musical Arts Institute. My oldest son Jared is 15 years old and he plays the trombone. My youngest son Jasiah is 13 years old and he plays the piano. My sons have been taking lessons at the Musical Arts Institute for more than a year now, and I am so impressed with the progress that both of them have made so far. The Musical Arts Institute has a very home-like atmosphere and all the instructors are very professional and down to earth. My husband and I have made a great choice in choosing Musical Arts Institute as a place where our sons are not only learning how to play music, but they are getting educated in the theory of music as well. Kudos to Mr. and Mrs. Manson for opening this school and to Mr Berry and Mrs. Lindsey for being great instructors!!! We are very satisfied with the
Musical Arts Institute.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My son, Maxwell, is learning to play the viola with Michael Manson at Musical Arts Institute (MAI). My husband and I wanted our son to learn to play an instrument in an effort to increase his ability to focus as well as his determination to learn new skills. Maxwell's experience with MAI has exceeded our expectations. Maxwell is learning to play the viola, attending lessons and practicing at home with great ease. This has also translated into him starting his homework on his own and taking more ownership of his elementary school education.

I must also praise the teachers and staff at MAI, they are consistently pleasant and informative. It is simply a wonderful, approachable experience. I highly recommend MAI for anyone--young and not-so-young--who would like to learn to play an instrument and/or receive voice lessons.

Mosley

Client Served

Rating: 5

My daughter is currently takes violin lessons at the Music and Arts Institute. Her teacher Mr. Manson is wonderful. He has brought out a confidence and talent in my daughter that I did not know was there. All the staff and teachers are very patient, personable and supportive of their students and do their best to take them to a different level in music. Their recitals that they showcase the students' talents are beyond words. They teach the students how to present themselves and do their best, which is awesome. My child is very shy and I see a difference in her pose and attitude towards herself and it has spilled over into her social life. Even her teachers and counselor at school are seeing a subtile difference in her confidence and have comment on it. Her grades are even better because she believes in herself. This is a great Music school and I would recommend it to all potential music student of any age.

Previous Stories

Client Served

Rating: 5

This organization is wonderful. My child has really benefitted double from learning piano. First, she is doing something that she really enjoys. She's learning alongside with her friends and having fun. Secondly, she seems to be more focus at school and her grades seems to be better. The classes are also affordable and within my budget. This is a great experience for her and I'm glad that she is exposed to it.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I consider it a great honor to write a review for Musical Arts Institute. About a year ago my husband and I were looking for a music program for our daughter. Fortunately, we found MAI for piano and vocal training. The Manson's are outstanding in the area a music theory, music instruction, and excellence in stage performance. Our daughter enjoys learning music in an environment that is kind and nurturing. She has had many opportunities to grow and learn in professional settings with world celebrated musicians and vocalists. She is totally engaged in the lessons with instructors. As parents who are constantly trying to expose our little one to new experiences.....we are so blessed to have found this wonderful jewel right here in our Chicago community! We absolutely love MAi:)