Elementary (5-12)


Strings


String Team

Inspired by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s “Power of Dreams” string programs, the CMS String Team program provides affordable group violin classes to local Jackson elementary and middle school students in downtown Jackson. This class runs through the fall and spring semester.

String Team A

  • Ages: 9-12
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: October 3rd 
  • End Date: May 3rd
  • Mondays & Wednesdays 4:30-5:30 pm

String Team B

  • Ages: 9-12
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: October 4th
  • End Date: May 4th
  • Tuesdays & Thursdays 4:30-5:30 pm

More Information

  • String Team Handbook
  • Recitals are scheduled at the end of each semester and are included in tuition. These recitals are held at the Jackson Community Music School building, downtown. All String Team students are invited to participate.
  • Violins can be easily rented from Shar Music for the year
    • Easy payment plans that build equity toward purchase
    • Method book included
    • Identify yourself as a Jackson String Team Student

In addition to exploring great music, learning to play a musical instrument offers other great lifetime benefits such as:

  • Developing academic and socially oriented skills, including self-discipline and concentration
  • Learning to listen and follow oral/written directions
  • Working within a group toward a common goal
  • Refining motor skills and hand-eye coordination
  • And the list goes on and on!

Mark Mathias, Teacher

Mark Mathias, double bass, studied with Lawrence Hurst at the University of Michigan obtaining a Bachelor of Music Performance degree in 1974. He also holds a Master of Fine Arts degree in Music Education from Eastern Michigan University and has taught violin, viola, violincello, double bass, and music technology in the Jackson Public Schools for over 20 years. He attended the Interlochen Arts Academy and, in addition to membership in the Jackson Symphony Orchestra for 23 years, has performed with the Flint Symphony, Lansing Symphony, and the Toledo Symphony.


2nd Year String Team

For students with one year experience in our String Team program. Inspired by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s “Power of Dreams” string programs, the CMS String Team program provides affordable group violin classes to local Jackson elementary and middle school students in downtown Jackson. This class runs through the fall and spring semester.

  • Ages: 9-13
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: October 3rd
  • End Date: May 3rd
  • Mondays & Wednesdays 4:30-5:30 pm

Matt Polson, Instructor

Matthew started playing violin in 1998, under the eye of Mark Mathias. He began private lessons the next year, and spent several hours at the JSO thereafter, participating in, and later co-teaching, Summer Strings. He also was a member of the Jr. Strings and JYSO. At the same time, he played in the orchestras at Parkside and Jackson High. When he was a H.S. senior, I was invited back to Parkside to guest solo with Kreisler’s Praeludium and Allegro.

While he was in these Jr. High and High School orchestras, he always dreamed of playing on the Potter Center stage. He never dreamed that one concert would include a bat flying around the auditorium, or that Maestro would return from that concert’s intermission with a tennis racket.


Folk Fiddling

This class is for anyone who has had at least 1 year of string instruction but we recommend it mainly to students ages 12-18. Students must be able to read music. Music for this class will consist of all types of folk music such as American Fiddle Tunes, Irish and Scottish Airs, Jigs and Reels, Nordic Roots and anything else from the Folk music traditions. It’s all about FUN!

  • Ages: Suggested 12-18
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start date: August 30th
  • End Date: May 2nd
  • Tuesdays 5:30-6:30 pm

Matt Polson, Instructor

Matthew started playing violin in 1998, under the eye of Mark Mathias. He began private lessons the next year, and spent several hours at the JSO thereafter, participating in, and later co-teaching, Summer Strings. He also was a member of the Jr. Strings and JYSO. At the same time, he played in the orchestras at Parkside and Jackson High. When he was a H.S. senior, I was invited back to Parkside to guest solo with Kreisler’s Praeludium and Allegro.

While he was in these Jr. High and High School orchestras, he always dreamed of playing on the Potter Center stage. He never dreamed that one concert would include a bat flying around the auditorium, or that Maestro would return from that concert’s intermission with a tennis racket.

Jed Fritzemeier, Instructor

Since 2019, Jed has been the Director of the Community Music School and Director of Music Education for the Jackson Symphony Orchestra. A performing bassist, Jed plays with the orchestra in addition to free-lancing throughout the area. He was a public school orchestra teacher for 34 years finishing his career for the Chelsea School District, Chelsea, Mi. Jed was Teacher of the Year for the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association and the Michigan American String Teachers Association in 2008. In addition to the Jackson Symphony Orchestra, his performance credits include the Michigan Opera Theater, Toledo Symphony, Ann Arbor Symphony, Racine Symphony, Racine, Wisconsin, South Dakota Symphony, Sioux Falls, South Dakota and various festival orchestras, jazz ensembles, rock bands, polka bands since he was 15 years old.


Vocals


Kids’ Choir

  • Ages: 4-8
  • Price: $200/semester
  • Start Date: August 31st
  • End Date: May 4th
  • Thursdays 5:30-6:15 pm

Registration coming soon.

Lisa Ebener, Instructor

Mrs. Lisa Ebener is currently in her 12th year as the third through fifth grade General Music Teacher for Northwest Community Schools in Jackson, MI.  She has been teaching music in public schools since 1998 after graduating from the Florida State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education.  In that time, Mrs. Ebener has been the Elementary and Middle School vocal music teacher for Decatur County Schools in Bainbridge Georgia, Elementary Music teacher for the Florida State University Laboratory School in Tallahassee Florida, and Elementary Music teacher for Northwest Community Schools in Jackson Michigan. She has also completed a Master’s degree in music education from the Michigan State University.


Children’s Chorale

Jackson Children’s Chorale is an opportunity for young people to learn basic principles of vocal production and to be introduced to quality choral literature. This group is co-sponsored by Jackson Chorale. In recent years the Children’s Chorale has performed with Jackson Symphony Orchestra and Jackson Community Band as well as at numerous venues including Michigan Theater of Jackson and the Governor’s Residence in Lansing.

  • Ages: 8-14
  • Price: $200/year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $25/month
  • Additional siblings enrolled at half price
  • Start Date: September 13th 
  • End Date: May 2nd 
  • Tuesdays 4:30-5:30

Jackie Livesay, Instructor

Jackie Livesay holds a Bachelor of Music degree at Westminster Choir College and a Master of Music degree from the University of Michigan. Both degrees are in Church Music with Organ as the principle instrument. She also obtained a Master of Arts in Education degree from Spring Arbor University.

Livesay currently is the Minister of Children’s Music and Organist at First United Methodist Church, Jackson, as well as serving as Orff Music Director at First Presbyterian Church, Jackson. She has directed Jackson Chorale Children’s Choir for the past five years.

Ms. Livesay is a retired Jackson Public Schools elementary music educator. She received the JPS Outstanding Elementary Educator Award in 2001. In addition to public school teaching and church music ministries, she has also taught pre-school music, college classes, and private organ and piano lessons.


Piano


Piano Kids Beginner Workshop (ages 5-9)

This class is for beginners on the piano. No experience needed! Students will explore the fundamentals of piano such as finger numbers, the music alphabet, and basic rhythms. Students will learn new songs and have the opportunity to perform for their peers during class.

Piano Kids A

  • Ages: 5-9
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: September 12th
  • End Date: May 1st
  • Mondays 6:00-6:30 pm

Piano Kids B

  • Ages: 5-9
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: September 13th
  • End Date: May 2nd
  • Mondays 6:30-7:00 pm

Marie Vavro-Clise, Instructor

Marie Vavro-Clise has a Bachelor of Science in Music from the University of Michigan. She has performed with the Detroit Opera Theater as well as performed in several countries in Europe. She enjoys teaching voice and piano to children and adults of all musical abilities.


Piano Masters 1

This class is for students that have completed at least level one or beyond in piano. Students will learn fundamental skills in composing and work with a variety of composition software. They will learn more in depth about chords and chord inversions. Students will be able to complete multiple composing projects during the course of this class and perform them for their peers.

  • Ages: 9-15
  • Price: $400/Year
  • Payment Plan Option: 8 months at $50/month
  • Start Date: September 12th
  • End Date: May 1st
  • Mondays 6:30-7:00 pm

Marie Vavro-Clise, Instructor

Marie Vavro-Clise has a Bachelor of Science in Music from the University of Michigan. She has performed with the Detroit Opera Theater as well as performed in several countries in Europe. She enjoys teaching voice and piano to children and adults of all musical abilities.