MusicWorks is a comprehensive program of music instruction for all ages. Students learn to read music, proper playing techniques, and the fundamentals of music theory. Our experienced teaching artists share their passion and enthusiasm for music with nearly 200 students yearly.

Individual Lessons

For younger students, MusicWorks provides a solid music education foundation. For middle school and older students it leads toward the mastery of an instrument and exposure to standard repertoire written for their particular instrument.

Group Lessons

Group lessons introduce young children to playing an instrument in a comfortable small group setting. At the Portland center children ages 5-8 can learn the basic principles of playing piano in Intro to Piano, and students age 4 and up can begin to learn the violin in Intro to Violin. At the Blackford County Arts Center, children in 2nd-4th grade may register for Piano Lab, and students in 4th-6th grade may register for Guitar Lab. 


Ensemble students learn to perform in small groups, a skill quite different from playing in large ensembles. These groups require the student to play their part independently of the others in the ensemble, a skill necessary for all musicians. Ensembles also give students more performance opportunities and expose them to repertoire written specifically for their instrument. Small ensembles are not typical within the context of public education.

A Choired Taste, the community choir of Arts Place, will practice and perform. Registration is open to anyone who can read music and match tones.

Please note – Ensembles are only available at the Portland Center of Arts Place.


JumpStart allows students to get a “jump start” on their music education. The basics of putting the instrument together, tone production, reading music, and fingerings will be covered.  Each student will receive a 1/2 hour lesson for six weeks with a qualified MusicWorks instructor. The starting date for these lessons will be June 22nd. Registration can be completed over the phone or by mail beginning June 8th or in person at the Portland Center of Arts Place beginning June 15th. Payment over the phone must be by credit card. All forms must be completed and turned in by June 22nd.

In addition, any student who needs to rent an instrument may do so through the Muncie Music Center.  Muncie Music has a website that will allow you to select an instrument and do all the paperwork online.  The website can be found at  Muncie Music will deliver the instruments to Arts Place. However, any instrument order placed after June 17th will need to be picked up at the Muncie Music Center.  If you already have an instrument, the band book, Standard of Excellence – Book 1, will need to be purchased. Muncie Music has these books in stock.

You can register for the Jump Start program over the phone (260-726-4809) or by mail beginning June 8th.  You can also register in person at the Portland Center of Arts Place (131 E. Walnut St., Portland) beginning on June 15, 2020. Download the registration form below. 

Summer MusicWorks

Summer MusicWorks is six weeks of thirty-minute individual lessons. MusicWorks is for students of all ages (you’re never too old to learn!).

Summer MusicWorks classes are offered at both our Hartford City location and our Portland Center.

Registration for SummerWorks can be done over the phone or by mail beginning June 8th. In-person registration can be completed at the Portland Center beginning June 15th. Summer MusicWorks lesson begin June 22nd. 

MusicWorks FAQ’s

How do I register?

To register for MusicWorks classes, fill out a registration form and return with payment to:

Arts Place
131 East Walnut Street
P.O. Box 804
Portland, IN 47371

Where are classes offered?

MusicWorks lessons are available at both the Portland Center and Blackford County Arts Center. Ensembles are only available at the Portland Center, while piano and guitar group labs are only offered at the Blackford County Arts Center.

What does it cost?

The fee schedule is located in the brochure. We have two payment options: Monthly payments or you can save $50 with a one-time payment.  Scholarship opportunities are also available. Download and print the scholarship application here.

Can I enroll anytime?

Yes! We encourage students to take the full 33 weeks of lessons however, we understand if you are not able to.

Who is eligible for MusicWorks?

MusicWorks lessons are for students or adults of any skill level. Ensemble participants should be experienced players.