Save the Music

We've reopened our doors - help us continue serving our students!





Kids like 16-year-old Lanif who want to learn how to play the saxophone typically have two choices: they can sign up for their school band, or their parents can pay for private lessons. 


But what if Lanif is home schooled, or attends one of the dozens of schools in Wake County that cut its music program? What if Lanif’s family can’t afford to pay the market rate of $50 per hour for music lessons? 


For 23 years, Community Music School has successfully provided private music lessons – in a wide range of instruments and genres – for $1 per lesson to children who otherwise would not be able to afford access to all the benefits of a quality music education.


At CMS, Lanif is –  

  • receiving weekly half-hour saxophone lessons, taught by a professional woodwinds instructor
  • borrowing a saxophone free of charge
  • performing in recitals and community concerts that build her confidence and poise
  • collaborating with other kids in free group classes, like music production and musical theater, and forming positive relationships with her peers
  • learning to read a language of music that will improve her math and reading skills in the process, and give her a new way to express herself and communicate with the world 

This year, 120 students are enrolled in music classes at CMS. Due to unforeseen financial difficulties, all of their lessons were put on hold for three months while we worked to raise the funds necessary to reopen. We resumed lessons on February 1, 2017, thanks to an overwhelming outpouring of support from our community. We are close to reaching our $100,000 goal, and you can still help us get there.  


Lanif has been a CMS student for four years, and her youngest sister is counting down the days until she can follow in her footsteps. Please donate today to help us continue to keep Community Music School's doors open to Lanif and all of our dedicated students, and ensure that we continue changing lives through music long into the future.

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CMS classes will resume on February 1! January 24, 2017

Community Music School is pleased to announce that we will resume all music programs starting Feb. 1, 2017. Thanks to an incredible and heartwarming outpouring of support, our Board of Directors believes that we can responsibly resume classes for this academic year while we continue fundraising for the future. Our loyal faculty is returning, and we are thrilled to be able to provide our students with these lessons after a break of almost three months.
The Board has also decided to embark on a strategic process to review our mission and develop new alliances and partnerships with stakeholders in our community. The Board will engage the community in this process, including our faculty, families, donors and other stakeholders in the music, youth and nonprofit community. The outpouring of support during the last few months has reinforced how important CMS is to our community, and we want to build on this support to better plan for the future. 
We are thankful for all of the support from you and others, and we look forward to working with you in the next several months as we re-envision what CMS will be in the future. In the meantime, we still need your support. Please follow our progress at

Thank you from all of us at Community Music School!

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