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SMAA Lesson Policies

Private Music Instruction


Private lessons are available both online and in-studio for piano, strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion, and voice for beginning through advanced students from school age through high school. Enrollment is open to interested students, regardless of age or ability. There are no audition or portfolio requirements for admission.

Lessons are available in 30, 45, and 60-minute lengths and Stamford Music & Arts Academy follows the Stamford Public Schools Academic Calendar. The first day of the fall semester is Tuesday, September 6, 2022. As part of the youth private instruction program, registered students are offered many performance opportunities. Careful consideration is given to match students with the appropriate instructor. First-time students are required to interview with the Director prior to registration. At that time, students learn about SMAA’s philosophy and special offerings, and the Director will recommend a teacher and schedule a lesson time. Private lessons are scheduled in the order in which registration is received. The lessons are scheduled on the basis of student and teacher availability and the Director’s recommendations. SMAA makes every effort to accommodate each student’s schedule in assigning lesson times.


Students enrolled in private lessons are encouraged to participate in chamber ensembles, theory group classes, and the Stamford Youth Chorus. For piano instruction, a piano or an 88-key electronic keyboard at home is required for enrollment.


Strings: violin, viola, cello, guitar

Piano: classical

Voice: classical, musical theater, jazz, pop

Brass: trumpet

Woodwinds: flute, bassoon, recorder

Private/Group Theory Lessons

Youth Choir

Group Classes Offered (Theory, Chamber Music, Youth Chorus)

Year-long enrollment is required. 


Group Class Pricing                                                                   YEAR-LONG


Chamber Music (60-min once a week)                                       $1,536.00

Stamford Youth Chorus                                                            $672.00

Group Theory Class (SMAA Students)                                     $648.00


                         Group Theory Class (without taking private lessons at SMAA)        $1,188.00


Other Fees                                       Late Payment Fee $50




Registration, Tuition, and Fees

There is a $60 annual registration fee that is non-refundable. A registration fee is payable once per academic year per student. The academic year is from September 1 to June 30. The student (or parent/guardian) is financially responsible for all classes and lessons. Students who enroll for private lessons and classes designated as “year-long” are registered for the entire academic year and will be billed automatically.


Tuition for year-long lessons and classes is divided into two equal payments. 50% of the Tuition is due by September 2nd for the beginning of the fall term and the remaining 50% is due by January 1 for the beginning of the spring term.


Payment plans are considered by the Business Manager when submitted in writing before the start of lessons and classes.


The lessons and classes for students with outstanding balances will be suspended until the

account is paid in full.


SMAA reserves the right to cancel group classes due to insufficient enrollment. Tuition will be fully refunded.


Late Registration

A limited number of classes and teacher studios may have space available after the semester begins. Private lesson and class tuition will be prorated. Registration for new students will be accepted throughout the semester on a space-available basis only.


Change of Instructor

Our method of assigning a private instructor is designed to make the best possible match before studies begin. However, if a change is desired, a student (or parent/guardian) must contact the Director.


Recital Attire

Gentlemen – dress pants, shirt with collar, and optional blazer and tie.

Ladies – dress, blouse and skirt or dress pants.

No jeans, sneakers, flip-flops, or UGG boots are allowed.


Withdrawal and Refunds


Tuition is fully refunded if a student withdraws before the first lesson.


The student (or parent/guardian) is financially responsible for all classes and lessons as stated in “Registration, Tuition, and Fees”. Students who enroll for private lessons and classes are designated as “year-long” are registered for the entire period of the lessons or classes and are responsible for the financial commitment.

In the case of prolonged illness (accompanied with a doctor’s letter) or move of residency, refunds are pro-rated as stated below.


All withdrawal requests must be made in writing to the Director for review. Please understand that verbal requests from students, parents, or faculty cannot be accepted.


Postmarked prior to the 1st scheduled class/lessons 100% of tuition

Postmarked prior to the 4th scheduled class/lessons 50% of tuition

Postmarked prior to the 8th scheduled class/lessons No refunds given


Return Check Fee

There is a $35 fee for returned checks.


Cancellations/Missed Lessons

The SMAA office must be notified of all cancellations.


For student absences, one individual lesson per semester can be rescheduled if the absence is due to student illness, religious observance, or extraordinary circumstances. There are no exceptions. SMAA must be notified 24 hours in advance of cancellation due to a religious observance or extraordinary circumstance, or by 8am the day of a lesson when due to illness. Otherwise, the teacher is not required to make up the missed lesson.


For teacher absences, students receive personal notification from the teacher and the lesson will be rescheduled. For unscheduled SMAA closings (see below), such as a snow emergency, lessons and classes will be rescheduled at the end of the semester.


In case of inclement weather SMAA will offer online makeups for all individual and group classes. Tuition will not be refunded.


School Closings

In the event of inclement weather, an email will be sent out to all SMAA families. You can also visit our website at for updates. All classes will be offered an online makeup due to the nature of our calendar.


E-mail is the primary mode of communication. Please be sure to list your current email address on the registration form.


Students are expected to treat the facilities respectfully. Pets are not allowed in the Stamford Music & Arts Academy building. Parents, guardians and caregivers are responsible for supervising the safety of their children at all times while they are on the SMAA premises. All pick-up and drop-offs are required to be made in the indicated parking zones only. 

Unattended Minors

Stamford Music & Arts Academy does not assume any responsibility for the well-being and safety of minors who are left unattended on school premises, in common areas and the parking area along Lawn Avenue.

Personal Property

Stamford Music & Arts Academy does not assume any responsibility for personal property (including, but not limited to clothing, cameras, cell phones, purses, wallets, vehicles, etc.) lost, damaged or left unattended on school premises, in common areas and the parking area along Lawn Avenue.


Change of Address

Please contact SMAA with any change of mailing address and email address. Students receive all notices and information through the post office mail and email—it is very important that accurate information be provided. Stamford Music & Arts Academy is not responsible for lost or undeliverable mail.



Performance Opportunities for Private Music Instruction


Performance Classes

SMAA encourages students of all levels to participate in these informal settings in which students play for their peers, the faculty, and the Director. Faculty recommend their individual students for upcoming performance classes. An accompanist is provided for performance classes.


Technique Workshops and Honors Recitals

Technique Workshops and Honors Recitals are offered twice a year and feature students who have demonstrated outstanding commitment and progress during the school year, based on a teacher’s recommendation.


End of term Recitals (December and May)

Student recitals are held for family and friends at the end of each semester in the SMAA Recital Hall.

Recital participation is mandatory for students that have been studying 1 year or more. Recital fee is included into invoice and is non-refundable. Students prepare repertoire with the approval and guidance of the teacher.


Rehearsals with an Accompanist

 If you need an accompanist for the recital or need an accompanist for any other performance outside of the end of term recital you will need to have your instructor schedule a time for you. Parents of students are responsible to provide payment at the time of the rehearsal.

  • Do not sign up unless you are certain you can commit to that time;

  • No-shows will be billed for their reserved time

Senior Recitals

This recital offers a concentrated performance outlet for the music student at the end of his or her senior year in high school. Students prepare recital repertoire and set dates with the Director.


Recital Etiquette

Recitals are important milestones for students developmentally. Stamford Music & Arts Academy offers many opportunities for students to share their musical accomplishments in a supportive environment. To encourage performers so that they can maintain attentiveness in a performance situation, please turn off cell phones. The use of camcorders or cameras with flashes is prohibited. Please wait until hearing applause before entering a performance, and gently encourage very young audience members to participate in appropriate concert etiquette.

Photo/Video Release 

Unless requested in writing, Stamford Music & Arts Academy is granted permission to take photographs/videos of the students to use in brochures, websites, posters, advertisements, and other promotional materials Stamford Music & Arts Academy creates. Permission is also hereby granted for Stamford Music & Arts Academy to copyright such photographs in its name.

Music & Instrument Resources


Pianos and Tuner:

Jonathan Brittin




Atelier Constantin Popescu

(203) 661- 9500

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