Students of all ages and experience levels can study with expert faculty who teach fundamentals of technique and musical expression, and inspire students to progress. Private lessons are available for all string, woodwind, brass and percussion instruments, as well as piano, voice, classical guitar, harp, composition and music theory. Lessons are offered at CIM's main campus in University Circle and in Shaker Heights. To discover which instruments are taught at each branch, visit our locations page. All preparatory students have access to CIM's Robinson Music Library; recitals by conservatory faculty, students and ensembles; and master classes.

Sign up for a free sample lesson today!

Interested in trying a lesson? All new students are eligible to register for a free 15-minute sample lesson with a faculty member of their choosing. Register today to connect with a faculty member.


Apply for spring 2022! Our lessons are designed to offer high-quality instruction in the safest way possible, including virtually and using a hybrid format, as the situation requires. Applications are accepted through CIM's online application.

Questions? Get in touch with the Preparatory team at to learn more about private lessons,


Once the application is received, students will be assigned to a teacher depending on the factors listed below.

Teacher Preference

You must select a minimum of one teacher preference when you apply. Before applying, we highly recommend thoroughly researching our faculty and contacting them directly to get a sense of their personality and teaching style. If this is not possible, or you are struggling to choose a teacher preference, please contact the Preparatory team so that we may assist you.

Please note: Teachers have the final say in accepting students into their studios. If a teacher does not accept a student into their studio, we will either contact the second preference teacher, or contact the family to discuss other options.

Admission Video

It is recommended that intermediate and advanced students submit a short video recording of their playing with their online application. This is not an audition video, simply a way for the teacher to get a better sense of the student’s ability level. Students with no prior experience are not required to submit a video.

Location Preference

Not all teachers are available at both locations, therefore, it is essential that you let us know your preferred branch location(s). Learn more about our branch locations and the faculty.

*Applicants can select "Virtual Learning" as a preferred platform for lessons. The final decision on lesson delivery will be decided by the teacher on a case-by-case basis.

Schedule Availability

Lessons are also offered depending on the schedules of the student and faculty. Within the application, you will be asked to describe your availability for lessons, which will help us to determine the best faculty match. We will do our very best to accommodate your schedule, but flexibility is greatly appreciated!