North Shore Music Teachers' Association


Our 2017-2018 programs include:
AIM Theory and Performance
Sonata-Sonatina Festival
Teachers' Meetings
Teachers' Recital and Luncheon
The newly revised 2014 AIM Syllabus is now available!

     All students enrolled in AIM at NSMTA will be tested from the 2014 AIM Syllabus. The 2014 AIM Syllabus and revised AIM workbooks, levels 2-12 are available for purchase at Click on AIM Publications from the gray menu box on the left to go to the order page. 

Theory Judges Notes
Performance Judges Notes
Repertoire Grading Guidelines

registration Begins                 NOVEMBER 6, 2017
Judges Meeting NOVEMBER 13, 2017
Entry Deadline December 8, 2017
Exam Dates

January 21, 2018

January 28, 2018

NSMTA members Jennifer Cohen and Jia-Yee Tang created mp3 recordings of all aural skills from the 2014 AIM Syllabus sample tests for levels 3-12. AIM Aural Skills.

Registration Begins FEBRUARY 26, 2018
Judges Meeting MARCH 5, 2018
Entry Deadline MARCH 12, 2018
Exam dates
  LEVELS 1and2
  music institute of Chicago (mic) winnetka             
  LEVELS 3-12
  LEVELS 3-12

APRIL 15, 2018

APRIL 22, 2018
APRIL 29, 2018

MIC, Winnetka
300 Green Bay Rd
Winnetka, IL 60093
(levels 1 and 2 only)

Northwestern University
1818 Hinman Ave
Evanston, IL 60208
Music Institute of Chicago
40 East Old Mill Rd
Lake Forest, IL 60045

     Need a goal for theory and performance? This is it. Achievement in Music is a statewide exam recently revised (by our own teachers who use it) to be practical and student-friendly. AIM offers a comprehensive curriculum that includes theory and technique as well as piano performance. The AIM Syllabus provides teachers with a sequential outline of piano study helpful in preparing students for yearly assessments. Students benefit by having specific goals to achieve at every level, while teachers and parents are given an independent evaluation of student progress.

Is there value in being professionally certified? Indeed there is. Parents and students want qualified teachers. Assure them that there are qualifications for teaching. Not just anyone who plays the piano is qualified to teach. Certified teachers are listed in The American Music Teacher which is circulated throughout the nation, in the ISMTA State Directory which is circulated throughout the state, and in our local NSMTA Directory or by calling the local certification chairperson.

Application Deadline               April 1, 2018
piano Competition May 5, 2018  9 - 3 p.m. Intelligent Fingers Piano Studio, Northbrook
Winners Recital May 13, 2018
     Competition form
     Competition Repertoire

     Want a real challenge for your most ambitious students? The annual award competition in piano is designed for gifted students of NSMTA members who want to study challenging piano repertoire and who want to compete with other gifted students. All winners perform at the May Winners Recital. The Competition will be held on Sunday May 6, 2018 at Intelligent Fingers Piano Studio, 2165 Shermer Road, Suite A, Northbrook, IL. Fee $35.00.

Marvel at the proficiency of our outstanding students. Gold Medal Winners Recital for Sonata-Sonatina Festival. Times to be determined depending on how many gold medal winners and how long the pieces are. See calendar for more details. The Winners Recital will feature the winners from the competition, AIM awards, Merle Hanson and Summer Camp scholarship award winners.
Gold medal winners recital       February 18, 2018
Winners Recital May 13, 2018

Information about scholarships
Information about Merle Hanson College Scholarship
Information about Summer Music Program Scholarship
Merle Hanson College Scholarship application
Summer Music Program Scholarship application

     Students who are currently in grades 5-12 are eligible to apply for a junior or senior scholarship of $200 each to a summer music program or $1,000 college scholarship. The candidate must be a student of an NSMTA member and submit a DVD or a link to a You Tube video of his/her playing to qualify.
Sonata-Sonatina 2018 Online Registration begins December 14
IMPORTANT: Teacher Help Requirement!

Sonata-Sonatina Festival Information
Festival Adjudicator Evaluation Explanations are now available
Registration Begins December 14, 2017
Application Deadline January 15, 2018
Festival Date February 11, 2018
Gold Medal Winners Recital    february 18, 2018
     Want students to be as excited about sonatas and sonatinas as you are? Each teacher may submit 10 students to play at the annual NSMTA Sonata-Sonatina Festival held at the Music Institute of Chicago. The Festival often has nearly 200 students participating, and is designed to give students critiques on their performances. They also receive a blue ribbon for participating, and those who score 90-100 receive medals: gold, silver, and bronze. Gold medalists may play in the Gold Medal Recitals a week after the Festival.

     The monthly meetings on the 4th Monday of each month September to November and January to April provide a good place to meet professional colleagues. Prompt members get in on a pre-meeting program at 9:30 by one of our own illustrious members before the 10:00 a.m. business meeting. Following a short coffee break will be the main program starting at 11:00 a.m. There is a variety of lectures, demonstrations, and performances. These inspiring programs provide continuing education and are often one of the reasons members join NSMTA.
     A festive way to finish the school year, our last gathering includes about an hour of fabulous performances of our own members and friends doing solos or ensembles on piano or organ and with voice or instruments. It takes place usually on a Monday in June at an area church and a nearby eaterie.