A Tradition of Arts Education for the Greater Decatur Community 

For over 100 years, Millikin University’s School of Music has provided quality music lessons for students of all ages from Decatur and surrounding communities. Today, that tradition continues as highly-trained faculty and upper-level Millikin students teach in their areas of expertise. Our programs have expanded to include not only private (applied) lessons but such programs as the Millikin Children's Choir Program, First Gig, Rock University: Millikin, Millikin University Community Cello Choir, Decatur Youth Symphony Orchestra, Music & Movement, Group Guitar and Ukulele classes and Summer Music Camps.

The mission of the Millikin Community Arts Academy (MCAA), formally known as the Preparatory Department, is to foster an appreciation of and participation in the Arts while instilling a lifelong love and enjoyment of the Arts. Inherent to this mission is providing learning and performance opportunities for students of all ages in music, theatre, dance and art, enhancing student's knowledge and performance expertise,  and cultivating a companionable link between the university and the community.

The Millikin Community Arts Academy is currently overseen by Director Marie Jagger-Taylor and Assistant Director Braun Sheets. If you need assistance getting started in any of our outstanding programs, please contact us by phone at (217) 425-4698 or Marie Jagger-Taylor at (217) 424-3579. Contact us by email at mcaa@millikin.edu

Summer Camps  Register for Classes


In addition to private lessons and the continuation of Decatur Youth Symphony, Millikin Children’s Choir, Millikin Community Choir, and Rock University we have new fall programs for pre-school – adult!

Check our our private lessons for ages 6 years – adult as well as our MCAA programs coming in the Fall. Registration begins July 5, 2022.


Sign Up for MCAA Fall Programs!

Mat Pilates
10 week course offered in 50 minute sessions  8 am Thursday  and /or 4 pm Sunday for Millikin University Students, Faculty, Staff and Community members. Classes will be held in CTD Room 300 and taught by certified Pilates instructor and Millikin Student Hannah Magy. 

Mat Pilates is suited for all fitness levels and focuses on building a strong, balanced body while increasing flexibility. As you progress in your practice you will notice improvements in breathing, focus, stress management, and body awareness. Mat Pilates requires a mat and comfortable clothing.

Session I:
Thursday 8 am September 8 – November 17 with no class on October 20
Sunday    4 pm September 11 – November 13
Location: CTD 300
Fee: $60.00 or $10 drop-in fee if room. Register early as space is limited. 

Music and Movement: 
Music and Movement classes are designed for children Pre-School Age and younger, and their caretaker. The classes consist of playful and enjoyable traditional folksongs and rhymes and are easily learned by caretaker and child and can be shared at home.  Classes are limited to 8 students to encourage participation and ensure a comfortable atmosphere.

6-week sessions for ages infants – 24 months and 24 months to 4 years old.
Ages Infants – 24 months:      Saturday, 9-9:40
24 months – 4 years old:         Saturday, 9:45-10:25
Location: PMC 218
Fee: $40 per session. Space is limited

Session I:        Saturday, August 27, 2022 – October 1, 2022
Session II:       Saturday, October 8, 2022 - November 12 , 2022
Session III:      Saturday, February 4, 2023 - March 11, 2023
Session IV:     Saturday, April 15, 2023 - May 20, 2023

MCAA Theatre Classes:

MCAA Theatre Program partners with Pipe Dreams Studio Theatre and offers theatre programs for youth of all ages and abilities to grow as artists and innovators. Two sessions of 6 week-classes offered for Pre-School Aged and Kindergarten-2 graders and one 8-week session offered for 3 – 8 graders.

Classes for Pre-School Aged students; ages 3-5: In these drop-off classes, students work together to create stories, generate new ideas, develop relationships while building upon others’ ideas, and enter the world of make believe. Our teachers lead students through an exploration of a story or concept, followed by mini lessons in drama, art, song, instrument play, or movement to bring the story or concept to life. Through the use of music, movement, and dramatic play, these classes ignite your child’s imagination while flexing their problem-solving, language, and physical skills.

Pre-School Aged Students, Ages 3 – 5 Saturday, 9-9:30 am
Fee: $30 per session
Location: Pipe Dreams
Session I: Saturday September 10 – October 1, 2022
Session II: Saturday, October 22 – November 19, 2022

Classes for Kindergarten through 2nd Grade:
Students participate in themed Creative Drama classes using drama, music, movement, and visual art to explore the fun of creating characters and the art of storytelling. 
Books and songs are used as springboards for students to explore characters through structured, creative, and fun activities culminating in short scenes or skits created by the students. 
Classes promote confidence, self-esteem, and creative expression while working on skills such as active listening and collaboration.

Kindergarten-2 Grade, Ages 5 – 8 Saturdays, 9:45 – 10:30 am
Fee: $40 per session
Location: Pipe Dreams
Session I: Saturday September 10 – October 1, 2022
Session II: Saturday, October 22 – November 19, 2022

Classes for Grades 3-8:
Students work in small grade groupings to explore more formal technique in Acting,  and Improvisation.  
Students explore a process of three-dimensional characters and truthful actions for the stage.
Classes utilize theatre games, guided improvisation activities, and scene work to develop characterization and script analysis skills.
Program culminates in a performance for family and friends on November 19, 2022.

3-8 Grade Saturdays 1:00pm-4:00pm
When: September 24 – November 19, 2022
Fee: $125
Location: Pipe Dreams

DIY Audio Recording Workshops: Ages: 14+ 

Enjoy a total of 6 sessions that introduce students to sound mixing, creating songs and music, producing recordings, analyzing production techniques and integrating music technology workflows in the music-making process. Previous musical experience not required. Sign up for entire camp or per session if room. Class meets Thursdays,: September 29, October 6-27, November 3 and 10. No class held October 14, 2022.

Sessions include:
Beginners Guide to Audio, Sound and Music             
All About Mics            
Audio Recording 101  
Music Mixing Lab       
"In the Box” Production          
DIY Studio: Apps and Gear for music making           
Final project showcase  
Fee: $72 for full camp; $20 for one workshop session 
Location: Perkinson Music Center Mac Lab at Millikin University

Millikin Community Percussion Ensemble

The Millikin Percussion Ensemble, MCPE, is an ensemble open to all percussionists ages 5th grade and older who are interested in a group musical experience. This 10-week course welcomes percussionists of all performance levels with at least one year of playing experience. MCPE will rehearse and perform pieces written and arranged for percussionist ensembles in a variety of styles. This group provides percussionists the opportunity to play together, develop ensemble skills, and advance their individual playing levels in a fun and relaxed environment. 10-week session culminates in a Holiday Concert December 11th at 5 pm.

When: Sundays, from 5:00-6:30 pm
Where: Percussion House, Millikin University
Start Date: September 11, with no class held October 16  and November 27.
Age: All ages are welcome with a minimum of 1 year of playing experience.
Space is limited
Fee: $165 per semester

RMM: Recreational Music Making

Information coming soon regarding our new program offering a community group piano class!

Millikin Community Cello Choir

The Millikin Community Cello Choir (MCCC) is an ensemble open to all cellists interested in a group musical experience. This 10-week course welcomes cellists of all performance levels with at least one year of playing experience. MCCC will rehearse and perform pieces written and arranged for cello ensembles. This group provides cellists the opportunity to play together, develop ensemble skills, and advance their individual playing levels in a fun and relaxed environment. MCCC will rehearse and perform pieces written and arranged for cello ensembles in a variety of styles. We aim to perform at least once at Millikin University and once in the Decatur community per semester. We will also continue to collaborate online for those who cannot join us in person.

When: Tuesdays from 5:30-6:30 pm
Where: Perkinson Music Center, Room 110
September 6 – November 29 with no session September 27, October 11 or November 22.
Age: All ages are welcome with a minimum of 1 year of playing experience.
Fee: $165

Rock University

Designed for the middle and high school students who play the guitar, bass, drums, keyboards and/or sing who are wanting to perform with a band and have performance opportunities. Players should have experience on their instrument. The program includes performance opportunities in local venues and the opportunity to create a recording in the Millitrax studio.

Schedule: Saturdays from 9:00 – 11:30am (10 Sessions & Gigs) September 17 – December 3 with no session October 15 or November 26, 2022.
Location: Millikin University, Perkinson Music Center
Fee:  $200 
For more information, contact Braun Sheets at bsheets@millikin.edu or (217) 425-4698

Millikin Children's Choir (More info coming soon!)

Fall 2022 placement interviews will be held Tuesday, September 6, 2022. Rehearsals are September 13, 2022 – December 6, 2022 and will culminate in a concert on December 6, 2022.No rehearsal is held November 22, 2022

Location: PMC

Decatur Youth Symphony Orchestra (More info coming soon!)

Beginning Ukulele Courses (More info coming soon!)

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