Our Partners & Affiliated Programs

The School of Music, in a reflection of the creative community we call Madison, is filled to the brim with extraordinary individuals with no limit to their talents and ambitions. We have faculty members who have built nationally-known summer music festivals, students and alumni who’ve formed pathbreaking music ensembles, teachers who have offered opportunities for serious amateurs to stretch their musical wings, and researchers who’ve contributed deep insights into our musical heritage. This page is devoted to these organizations and groups.

(Above: Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society, 2013. Photograph by Dick Ainsworth.)

Arts Business Competition

The University of Wisconsin–Madison Arts Business Competition is a campus-wide competition to encourage new thinking and innovative ideas, and to provide support for student-driven projects. Entrants will develop and submit a thorough proposal for an arts event, exhibition, series, commercial venture, or other artistic project.

Proposals are due in late winter of each year; see link for updates.

Arts Business Competition

Community Music Lessons

The Community Music Lessons (CML) program runs under the auspices of the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Music to provide its students with valuable experience teaching applied music lessons for children and adults. Lessons are provided by undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in the School of Music who are overseen by individual faculty members, an experienced graduate coordinator, and a staff supervisor. Lessons are taught on campus, in the Mosse Humanities Building.  Music Instructors are matched with University and community learners interested in beginning or continuing study of an instrument or voice in a fun and supportive atmosphere. Flexible scheduling and performance opportunities enhance the CML program, which has exemplified the Wisconsin Idea since 1968.

Continuing Education (Music)

High-quality instruction and innovative programming for musicians and music lovers of every skill level, genre, and interest, taught by leading musicians, educators, and historians from UW-Madison and across the region. Programs meet multiple requirements and standards for continuing education.


Madison Early Music Festival

The Madison Early Music Festival was created in 2000 to provide an opportunity for musicians, scholars, teachers and early music enthusiasts to gather and exchange information and ideas about Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque music and to bring acclaimed early music artists to the Midwest to perform in beautiful Madison, Wisconsin. There are opportunities for everyone, from those who simply enjoy listening to concerts and lectures to early music scholars, and performance opportunities for amateurs and professionals. All listeners, singers, players and dancers are welcome!

Learn more here, including details of the current schedule:


Mayrent Institute for Yiddish Culture

The Mayrent Institute for Yiddish Culture is dedicated to studying and preserving Yiddish music and culture, teaching it to new generations, and supporting scholarship that explores it as an important facet of Jewish and American life. Established in 2010, it is part of the UW-Madison Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures and is named for Sherry Mayrent, an avid collector of historical Yiddish recordings.

Learn more here

Mills Music Library

The Mills Music Library is named after former School of Music Director Charles H. Mills (888) and contains a veritable smorgasbord of tantalizing resources. You don’t need to major in music to love a music library!

  • NAXOS Jazz Library
  • Bunny Berigan Collection
  • American Sacred Music
  • Americana Sheet Music Collection
  • Civil War Band Collection: 1st Brigade Band of Brodhead, Wisconsin
  • Cuca Records Database
  • Joseph Philbrick Webster Music Manuscripts (ca 1840s-1874)
  • Paramount Records Discography
  • Popular Sheet Music Collection
  • Tams Witmark Collection
  • Wisconsin Folksong Collection, 1937-1946

Wisconsin Sheet Music Database

and much, much more.

Start your explorations here: http://music.library.wisc.edu/

National Summer Cello Institute

In 2018, the Cello Institute relocated to Caroga Lake, New York. Please check this website for future information.

The National Summer Cello Institute is a unique program tailored for professional, graduate, and advanced undergraduate cellists.  The focus of the program is on the close relationship between effective use of the body and musical communication.  Twenty two cellists who are selected by audition submission delve deeply into the connection between body awareness and cellistic proficiency, musical expression, effective teaching, and injury prevention.

All selected participants attend the full two week Your Body Is Your Strad program, which include the Feldenkrais for All Musicians component.  They are exposed to a range of performance and pedagogical topics, represented by internationally acclaimed faculty.

The Institute was founded by Uri Vardi, professor of cello at UW-Madison, and Hagit Vardi, Feldenkrais practitioner, University of Wisconsin – Integrative Medicine Program.

Piano Pioneers

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Piano Pioneers program offers scholarship lessons (and practice instruments if needed) to children and adults in the Madison community who want to study the piano but can’t afford the full cost of lessons. Lessons are held at the UW-Madison Mosse Humanities Building, and teachers are graduate students in the UW-Madison piano performance and pedagogy programs. Lesson times are flexible and are arranged between each student and teacher. The full cost of lessons is $15.00 per half-hour; most families pay between 1/3 and 1/2 of this cost and scholarships cover the rest of tuition. Generous support from the Ira and Ineva Reilly Baldwin Wisconsin Idea Endowment, and the Evjue Foundation helps make this program possible. The foundations provide scholarships for piano lessons and provide support for purchasing music books and instruments. The Steinway Piano Gallery is the exclusive partner for Piano Pioneers, generously providing instruments, instrument transportation and tuning through the Steinway Piano Bank. Piano Pioneers is not currently accepting new students.

Sigma Alpha Iota Women’s Fraternity

Sigma Alpha Iota is an organization which promotes interaction among those who share a commitment to music. Members of SAI are active in all areas of campus music and campus life, working closely with faculty, administration, campus and community groups, music professionals and patrons. In addition to personal encouragement and support, members may receive scholarships, loans and awards in many areas and at all levels of music-related study. Sigma Alpha Iota has long been recognized as a leader in the field of music and provides a lifetime of fraternity contact. Sigma Alpha Iota accepts with pride the responsibilities and privileges of being a leader in the pursuit of music creation, performance, and scholarship.

National website: Sigma Alpha Iota

Madison chapter, Sigma Alpha Iota

Sound Health

The Sound Health Program is seeking graduate or undergraduate students currently enrolled in the Mead Witter School of Music to perform at the University Hospital and Clinics. Performances will be held on Fridays from 12:30pm-1:30pm during the fall semester. Each performer will receive $50 compensation for one 60 minute performance. A piano and music stands are available at the hospital. Soloists and duets are preferable. Due to limited space and volume considerations, certain applicants may not be able to be accommodated.

For more information, contact Mandy Kron, UW Health Art Coordinator, at akron@uwhealth.org or 608-852-2744.

The Sound Health Program was founded in 2010 by Mary Perkinson, Mead Witter School of Music DMA alumna.  The mission of Sound Health is to enrich the University Hospital environment for patients, families, health care providers, and staff through live music, while providing music students with an opportunity for community service and professional performing experience.

Summer Music Clinic

Join other junior or high school music students for a week of creative skill-building and performance in band, orchestra, choir, musical theater and jazz ensemble. Concert groups rehearse throughout the week and your family and friends are invited to the final concerts. Classes are designed to help you polish your ensemble and individual performance skills with a variety of music-related topics and techniques. Evening concerts and after-class recreation round out an exciting and dynamic music camp experience. Evening concerts are a mix of guest performing artists, student and faculty recitals.

Learn more here: http://continuingstudies.wisc.edu/smc/

Winds of Wisconsin (High School)

A premier high school wind ensemble on the UW-Madison campus

Winds of Wisconsin is composed of a select group of Wisconsin high school wind and percussion instrumentalists who perform traditional and contemporary wind band literature.  Our goal is to provide outstanding young musicians with an opportunity to learn wind literature of the highest quality; allow them to work with faculty who have made music education of youth a top priority; and make lifelong connections with others who share a love and passion for music.

The program consists of two concerts with five rehearsals each, sectionals, an instrumental masterclass with UW-Madison Mead Witter School of Music faculty, and additional topics presented by the music education faculty.

Conductor: Prof. Scott Teeple.

Learn more here: http://continuingstudies.wisc.edu/wow/

Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestra

Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras (WYSO) is a model for youth orchestras worldwide by providing a full range of innovative instrumental music education and performance opportunities accessible to all dedicated young people.

WYSO was established in 1966 by Professor Marvin Rabin of the University of Wisconsin-Extension Music Department. More than 5,000 young musicians from throughout southern Wisconsin have participated in WYSO over the years. Currently under the artistic direction of Kyle Knox, WYSO includes three full orchestras, two string orchestras, a chamber music program, a harp program, a percussion ensemble, a brass choir program and the WYSO Music Makers program.

Learn more about WYSO at www.wysomusic.org.