Students taking music theory and composition class at the International School of Music in Bethesda and Potomac

Music Theory and Composition Lessons in Bethesda and Potomac

Whether as a supplement to certificate programs or for personal growth, our music theory and composition private lessons can be custom tailored to the specific desires and aspirations of students. Music theory directly furthers a student’s ability to understand and communicate the full meaning of music. International School of Music theory classes teach the “language of music”, enabling students to learn and memorize faster, improve sight reading, and render informed interpretations. In theory lessons, students learn basic knowledge of note reading in treble and bass clefs, rhythmic values, and simple terminology. As students progress, they are able to recognize and analyze complex harmonic and rhythmic applications in music. More advanced theory covers formal analysis, harmonic procedures, ear-training, and “inner-hearing” as students’ knowledge of music history and literature continues to broaden.

In-Person and Online Music Theory and Composition Classes

The International School of Music offers in-person music theory lessons from one of our locations and online Music Theory and Composition Classes as part of our distance learning program.  Students can take virtual music theory classes with our top-rated music faculty from the comfort of their home!  Our high-quality online music program uses video conferencing systems like Skype or Zoom. All students need is a laptop or tablet, and a reliable internet connection and their instrument.

Our music teachers work with students of all ages and offer instruction to students of all levels, be they beginner, intermediate, or advanced. During online lessons, students can work on music fundamentals like note reading, rhythmic values, and terminology. Students can study music from a range of styles from classical to jazz and learn to apply new techniques to their own compositions!

Our lessons provide wonderful convenience, safety, and best quality education with our top-rated music instructors who have students’ best interest at heart! The International School of Music faculty will customize lessons to students’ goals and teach students the music they want to play!

Learning music theory and composition is easy at ISM! We’ll help you schedule your lessons with the best instructor at the most convenient time for you.

Ready to Start or Have Questions? E-mail us or Call or text 301-365-5888 and start your music lessons today!

We want you to love your lessons so we offer a risk-free trial, and no long-term contract! We guarantee a customized in-person or online experience that will exceed your expectations, so contact us today!

“We just wanted you to know that we really love our Zoom music lessons! Our kids seemed much more engaged during their lessons and couldn’t wait to start practicing afterwards.” —Marisa L.

“Thank you so much for transitioning my children’s music lessons to online, as all of their other activities have been canceled. Their music lessons have provided them with so much joy, purpose and structure and it is great to have music in our home during this anxious time.”—Amy S.

Why take Music Theory and Composition Lessons with us?

With a large faculty and several teachers per instrument, we can find a teacher that fits each student’s learning style, and his/her musical goals. All students have the opportunity to discuss their individual goals and learning styles with faculty and staff so they are assigned to the music theory instructor best suited for them.

The International School of Music provides a comprehensive and robust music education. Music theory and composition instruction is offered in all genres from classical, jazz, pop, rock, to folk, blues, and other genres. Our music lessons are offered to students of all ages & levels in all instruments & voice including piano lessons, violin lessons, guitar lessons, viola lessons, cello lessons, voice/singing lessons, flute lessons, drum lessons and more. Group classes, ensemble/chamber classes, our flute choir, fiddle band, guitar ensembles, string quartets, and early childhood music classes round out the selection of experiences offered.

We offer month to month lessons, so there are no semester minimums. Our flexible scheduling allows us to schedule family members simultaneously to save families hours of driving. Additionally, we offer over 300+ group classes annually, so students can make up any missed lessons.

Bethesda students having fun in their piano lesson at International School of Music

ABRSM Theory

Associated Board of the Royal School of Music (ABRSM) Theory Course

Students wishing to gain competency in music theory can work towards the completion of graded theory levels of the internationally recognized ABRSM Theory Course. Instruction in the form of tutorials is available in private sessions. Students will study the required material and prepare for evaluations administered for each grade level. Students should be 8 years of age with at least 2 years playing experience to begin the ABRSM program.

Music Theory and Music Composition Classes at International School of Music in Rockville and Chevy Chase

Music Composition

The purpose of studying composition is to encourage and enhance creative thinking in music. Core compositional techniques (voice leading, counterpoint, harmony) and the study of conventional musical forms are essential to a composer’s development. In addition to creating original works, composition students are taught to analyze and compose in a variety of musical styles. Formal instruction in music composition is available at all ability levels. These courses include voice leading, harmony, standard chord progression, voicing procedures, forms, and counterpoint. Completion of Music Theory Fundamentals or an equivalent understanding of music reading is required. Students will be evaluated in a mandatory trial lesson.

International School of Music student holding achievement certificate

Song Writing

Song writing is composition made easy! Geared towards a more informal approach to composition, students of Song Writing will master harmonic progressions, simple rules of voice leading, song forms, and arrangement of texts. Basic proficiency in music reading is strongly recommended, as is experience on a harmonic instrument (guitar, piano, banjo, etc.).

It's easy to take the next step: Call us at 301-365-5888 and start Your Musical Journey Today!

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