- Music Classes & Lessons
- Group Classes & Ensembles
- Private Lessons
- Early Childhood
- Summer Camps
- View by Instrument/Age
- Why Choose Merit
Individual lessons and group classes for students at any level.
- Community Programs
Bringing accessible, high-quality music education to Chicagoland communities.
- Selective Programs
- Chicago Musical Pathways
The highest level of achievement for Merit students in tuition-free, audition-based programs.
Who we are and what we believe in.
How Merit makes a difference.
Merit's supporters remove barriers to music education, ensuring access for Chicago's youth.
Additional info for current and prospective students.
Guitar Classes & Lessons
Whether you’ve played guitar for years or are just getting started, Merit’s celebrated faculty are here to help you unlock your musical potential.
Our students have used their time at Merit to build their musical abilities, go on to attend some of the country’s best music conservatories, pursue careers as teaching artists and performers, and gain the confidence to chase their dreams in music and beyond.
Programs for Musicians of All Levels
Hone your skills and technique, build confidence, and forge life-long friendships in group classes. Beginners welcome!
Work one-on-one with skilled and supportive faculty to explore your individual talents and musical interests.
Join the best of Merit’s talented student musicians by auditioning for Merit’s prestigious tuition-free Conservatory.
Make friends, memories, and music all summer long with Merit’s line-up of camps, classes, workshops, and ensembles.
Watch Merit Guitar Students in Action
Each year, Merit guitar students of all ages come together to perform in concerts at the Joy Faith Knapp Music Center and venues throughout Chicago.
Past performances include concerts at Symphony Center and Millennium Park.
Chicago's Finest Guitar Faculty
“Merit Guitar camps, classes, and lessons help students reach their full potential as musicians and tap into their creativity. Most importantly, our classes are FUN. Students learn the technical skills needed to be top musicians while developing lasting friendships and a lifelong love of music.”
Guitar Department Chair & Faculty
Meet Our Faculty
Our celebrated teaching artists are working jazz, classical, and pop musicians who have toured nationally, led ensembles, and supported students in achieving ambitious goals. Committed to helping Merit students succeed in music and in life, our Guitar faculty provide students with the immersive training, feedback, and mentorship they need to learn and grow.
Meet Merit Guitar Students & Alumni
What age can my child start learning guitar?
Your child can begin guitar starting at age 9. Learn why.
Even if your young music-lover isn’t old enough for guitar, there are plenty of classes we recommend that will help prepare them for instrument study:
- Music Masters 2 (Ages 5-7) – This class prepares young music-lovers for instrument study. Your child will learn the basics of music theory, note reading, and music composition through playing the glockenspiel and exploring musical games and stories. Children ages 5 to 7 explore the instrument families, learn to read music notation, compose, sing with Curwen hand signs, and complete short weekly homework assignments to reinforce learning.
- Ukulele & You! 1 & 2 (Ages 5-8) – Grown-ups and their little ones learn to play the ukulele while the whole classroom community engages with a variety of fun songs, singing games and dances, musical books, and instrument exploration. This class is designed for activities to continue at home to extend learning and family time through music.
- Children’s Choir – Beginners and music enthusiasts welcome—no singing experience required! Students will learn how to use proper vocal technique including posture, breathing, and vowel shape, singing in unison, harmony, and solfege (do-re-mi), and counting rhythms.
Do I need my own guitar?
Every student will need their own guitar before their first class or lesson. Learn about your instrument rental options.
What is the attendance policy for classes and lessons?
Students are expected to be present and on time for all classes and lessons. We are unable to provide refunds, credits, or make-ups for any lessons missed by students.
Still have questions? Visit our FAQs page or contact us at [email protected].
Financial aid is available for qualifying students. Learn more about how to apply.
We’re here to help! Find answers to your questions. Click here.
Three easy steps. All ages, instruments, and skill levels are welcome. Get started today!