Registration Questions

New students should contact our office to be placed with a teacher.  The Academy offices can be reached by phone at 816-235-2741 or by email at music-ce@umkc.edu. Returning students may click here to register online.

New students do not need to be placed in a class, but we recommend new students contact our office to confirm which classes will be a good fit, and to confirm the desired class has space available. The Academy offices can be reached by phone at 816-235-2741 or by email at music-ce@umkc.edu. Registration can be done online by clicking here.

We are currently offering in-person and digital lesson options. Please directly discuss with your teacher which option you are both more comfortable with. 

Payments may be made via check, money order, Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or American Express.

  • mail: Checks or money orders can be mailed to our office, 5227 Holmes Rd, Kansas City, MO 64110
  • online: Credit card payments for lesson plans and must be made online
  • in person: Checks and money orders are accepted at our office, Charlotte House Room 207. Payment drop boxes are also located on the first floor of Charlotte House and Grant Hall (located in the main lobby, outside the Grant Hall Main Office).

It is not necessary to register in person. Registration for classes or lessons can be submitted online.

There are no refunds for any of our lessons or classes.

The Academy does offer the option of a sample lesson before signing up. If a student registers for a sample lesson, it give them the opportunity to make sure the instructor is a good fit before registering for the whole semester. To receive a sample lesson students must contact the Academy office first to be matched with an instructor. Lesson rates are $28.50 for 30-minutes, $42.75 for 45-minutes, and $57.00 for 60-minutes.

Yes! The Academy does offer online lessons via a variety of video applications. Please note, online lessons need to be paid at least 24 hours in advance so that teachers can be notified that they are good to teach.

The Academy offers UMKC employees and students a 10% discount on all private lessons (not applicable for group classes and workshops).

Private Lesson & Group Class Questions

All Academy lessons and classes take place on the UMKC campus, in one of three buildings:

  • James C. Olson Performing Arts Center, 4949 Cherry St., Kansas City, MO 64110
  • Grant Hall, 5227 Holmes, Kansas City, MO 64110
  • Charlotte House, 5301 Charlotte St, Kansas City, MO 64110

Academy lessons cannot be held off-campus.

Academy faculty members are experienced professional music educators and performing artists. They include UMKC Conservatory alumni, graduate students, and Conservatory faculty.

UMKC offers metered parking in several locations that are close to Academy lesson locations. The Academy is not responsible for any parking tickets given to illegally parked cars. View the campus maps here: www.umkc.edu/maps/

  • For Grant Hall and Charlotte House, there is a metered lot located on the South side of the building. If this lot is full, there is parking in the residential neighborhood south of the building. Please note that some streets in this neighborhood are reserved for those with special residential permits. Read all signs carefully before parking.
  • For the Performing Arts Center, there is a metered lot located just southeast of the building. Make sure that your spot is a metered spot. This lot also has spaces for student permits and faculty permits. Do not park in spaces reserved for a permit that you do not have. You may be ticketed.

The Academy is not responsible for any parking tickets given to illegally-parked cars.

When the University cancels classes due to severe weather or other emergency circumstances, the Academy is closed. In these cases, the instructors may choose to make up the lesson. If the University remains open, the Academy is open as well, and lessons will continue as scheduled. University closings will be indicated at www.umkc.edu.

The Academy annually hosts a number of recitals in our outstanding White Performance Hall. These recitals are open to all Academy students by instructor nomination. The Academy also offers a Spring Solo Festival, which provides an opportunity for performance at all levels. Additionally, many Academy instructors hold studio recitals at which they feature their own students.

Learning to sing or play a musical instrument involves many different skills, including fine motor coordination, concentration, breath support, and more. Academy age limits are set by professional music educators and are based on best practices in the field.

  • Children younger than the age of 4 generally have not yet developed the fine motor skills and the concentration needed to study the violin, cello, or piano.
  • Children younger than the age of 8 generally have not yet developed the physical size necessary to play woodwind and brass instruments with sufficient breath support.
  • Girls under the age of 12 and boys whose voices have not yet changed are still developing their vocal chord and are generally not ready for the significant physical challenges of voice lessons.

The Academy recommends programs such as Piano-Readiness for young students interested in music. Children ages 4 and up who are interested in instruments such as the guitar, woodwind, and brass instruments, are encouraged to enroll in piano lessons or any of the above programs.

There are many options for purchasing or renting musical instruments in the Kansas City metro area. The Academy recommends Meyer Music and KC Strings, but there are other good options as well.

Any student taking lessons must have an instrument available for home practice. If you do not have a piano at home, purchasing a digital piano or electric keyboard is one option. Any keyboard used for practice should have 88 keys that are weighted to produce a realistic feel.

Yes! Beginners of all ages are welcome. Academy faculty members’ studios feature quite a few adult beginners and Academy teachers are experienced in working with students of all ages. The Academy also offers adult group classes in piano and guitar.

The Academy does not require auditions for any lessons.

We offer a number of merit-based scholarships. Applications are accepted on an annual schedule and are only applicable for the following school year. More information about scholarships can be found on the Financial Aid page.

Pedagogically, music lessons are most helpful and beneficial when they are carried out over many weeks, months, or years, rather than “a few here and there.” For this reason, Academy lessons are scheduled on a semester basis, similar to most academic school years. Students who sign up for lessons must commit to a full semester, or any portion remaining if registering mid-semester. The Fall and Spring Semesters run for 18 weeks, and the Summer Semester runs for 9 weeks.

Yes. The Academy offers lessons throughout the year, including the summer months.

UMKC students are welcome to take lessons through the Academy but these lessons cannot be paid for from UMKC tuition fees, and credit is not available for any lessons taken here. The Conservatory does offer several classes that are open to UMKC students who are not majoring in music. Look on Pathway for class availability.

Festival, Workshop, & Day Camp Questions

Yes – students can participate in the annual Spring Solo Festival by instructor nomination. Middle and high-school students who are in band, orchestra, or choir can also be nominated for the Conservatory’s Midwest Honor Band and Orchestra Festival and/or Conservatory Vocal Arts Festival by their instructor.

For more information, follow these links: Spring Solo FestivalMidwest Honor Band and Orchestra Festival, and Conservatory Choral Festival Series

Middle and high-school students can participate in several of the Conservatory’s summer workshops. Workshops are available for percussion, saxophone, piano, dance, composition, double reeds, and jazz. For more information, follow this link: Summer Workshops.

For additional questions not addressed here, please contact the Academy office by phone at (816) 235-2741 or email at music-ce@umkc.edu.