The Music Center
The Music Center

community music school

Community Music School baby and toddler in music class
Suzuki Violin Program

Note: The Suzuki Violin Program is not available at this time. However, Jaclyn Burke is available for private lessons.

“Musical ability is not an inborn talent but an ability which can be developed. Any child who is properly trained can develop musical ability, just as all children develop the ability to speak their mother tongue. The potential of every child is unlimited.”
--Shinichi Suzuki

Suzuki's "Mother Tongue" approach to teaching music builds on the principles of language acquisition. Those principles include an early beginning, listening, loving encouragement, parental support, constant repetition, learning with other children and then learning to read. Because all children learn and master their own language, Suzuki believed all children could learn and master music in the same way. He sometimes called this "Talent Education," meaning that musical talent is not inborn, but can be developed in everyone. He personally taught hundreds of students, including many with disabilities. He also toured the world with his very large group of extremely accomplished and young violin students, and music teachers - profoundly amazed with his accomplishments - begged him to share his methods.

Suzuki called his method a "philosophy" and not a method; saying teachers must all devise their own methods. Suzuki began by teaching the violin, then his "philosophy" grew to encompass viola, cello, bass, flute, guitar, harp, piano, organ, voice, recorder and early childhood education.

The fact that Shin'ichi Suzuki lived through the horrors of World War II in Japan might account for his sense of higher purpose in teaching children to play the violin: "Teaching music is not my main purpose. I want to make good citizens, noble human beings. If a child hears fine music from the day of his birth, and learns to play it himself, he develops sensitivity, discipline and endurance. He gets beautiful heart."

Jaclyn Burke, The Music Center's resident Suzuki expert, has a wonderful rapport with the students. Click here for more information on Jaclyn and her studio philosophy.

The Music Center's Suzuki program has three components:

·       Weekly 30min Private Lesson on Monday or Thursday.
·       Weekly 1hour Group Lesson Saturday 11:30-12:30pm.
·       For ages 3-9 the first 3 Group classes are for the parent.  On Saturday 10:00-11:00am.

Classes and lessons run from January 9th through May 27th with a week off for Spring break.

The cost is $779 plus a $10 registration fee, and includes a 30 minute private lesson, a weekly one hour group lesson, and 3 parent group classes.

Community Music School offers financial aid to families with less than $50,000 in annual income on a sliding scale.

For more information

269.963-1911 ext. 2589
by email



The Community Music School's main location is inside of the Davidson Building on the campus of Kellogg Community College. We are located on the south end of campus, behind Fremont School near Emmett Street.

The address of the building is: 450 North Avenue, Battle Creek, MI

Click here for maps to our locations

Community Music School

Fall 2016
September 6-December 9

Winter 2017
January 9-May 27
Registration starts November 21, 2016

Summer 2017
June 5-August 25
Registration starts May 1, 2017

Registration page


Registration open all semester

For registration and start up dates of each program please check out the pages for private lessons, Music First,and the Registration page.

CMS financial aid is available to families with under $50,000 in annual income. Other aid is available to qualifying families from area foundations and organizations. For more information, please contact the Music Center.

Some of the financial aid options are need based while others are not. Please call today to find out how we are able to keep music learning accessible and affordable for our community.

Tuition only covers a portion of the cost of Music Center programs. Click here to donate online.



Trombone player

Did you know that the Community Music School is a program of The Music Center of South Central Michigan? Click here for information on all of the classes and ensembles we have to offer.