Young Pianists Program

Dr. Karen Taylor

Young Pianists Program and Piano Academy Director
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Upcoming Pre-College Piano Events

Monday, January 13, 2020 Spring semester lessons begin. Please register by this date and pay fees (unless applying for financial aid)

March 15 - 22: Spring Break - No regular lessons

Sunday, May 3: last day of regular lessons

Friday, May 8 and Sat. May 9: Spring Recitals

Monday, May 11: start of Summer terms (6 weeks)



Young Pianists Program 

Ages 5 through High School

NEW STUDENTS: Please contact Dr. Karen Taylor before registering

*Newly enrolling students should pay only the $15 registration fee and contact Dr. Karen Taylor regarding teacher availability


One of the cornerstones of the Jacobs School of Music's respected pre-college division, the Young Pianists has been providing high-quality piano and theory instruction to students from Monroe County and South Central Indiana since 1986. We are an open enrollment program: we admit all students age 5 through high school who want to learn piano or improve their playing. 

*Admission is contingent on teacher availability.

We may have openings for beginners and transfer students for the Fall semester depending on teacher availability. Auditions are not required to participate, but transfer students enrollong for the first time may be asked to have a placement interview.


The Young Pianists Program has two distinct and complementary missions: to prepare the most talented and accomplished young pianists for future conservatory-level study, and to nurture the creative and instrumental abilities of our many students who want to play just for the love of it. Our faculty teaches each type with equal enthusiasm, expertise, and caring, and strives to deepen the understanding and passion of each for our marvelous musical art.

The Young Pianists affords gifted children and 'teens with career ambitions the rigorous instrumental and conceptual foundations a pre-professional needs to pursue piano performance in college and beyond. These young instrumentalists immerse themselves in music and are deeply committed to their piano studies. They devote substantial time to practice, perform often in recitals or master class, and enter regional and national competitions. Every year talented and dedicated graduates of the Young Pianists Program and the Summer Piano Academy go on to study at the Jacobs School of Music and other prestigious institutions.

We also offer private piano lessons to any pre-college student wishing to experience the joys of music-making at the piano, regardless of prior training, ability level, or career aspirations. We accept everyone, from debutants to the exceptionally advanced. Our talented and experienced teachers are here to serve you! Our "open door" admissions policy is based on the conviction that the arts are for all of us. Everyone deserves the opportunity to have beautiful music in their life, and everyone is capable of artistic expression at some level of understanding and skill.

Naturally we are gratified when students from our program decide to pursue music professionally and become respected performers and teachers. But we are equally proud of those who, though drawn to other careers, stay with piano long enough to become sensitive musicians and proficient performers. Whatever their chosen vocation, they will bring to it the focus, communication skills, confidence, and self-discipline developed during their years of piano study.

Lessons start soon - come join us!

Dr. Karen Taylor, Founder/Director; Young Pianists Program and Summer Piano Academy


Note: In order to take piano lessons, a student must have access to a piano or keyboard on which s/he can practice daily. An acoustic piano is highly preferable, but a large electronic keyboard will suffice for the first year if need be. Pre-college pianists cannot reserve time in the Jacobs School's practice rooms.

 Most children are ready for piano lessons at age 5 or 6, depending on their attention span and their emotional and physical maturity. A few can successfully start at age 4. The younger the starting age, the more crucial it is for a parent/guardian to be actively involved in every aspect of study. All beginners and young children should be accompanied to lessons by a parent who is actively engaged (takes notes) and who regularly supervises the child's home paractice. Parents who are not themselves musicians may find it helpful to record the lessons.

Enrollment in the Young Pianists is by the semester (15 weeks of lessons plus a final week of rehearsals and recitals). The Fall and Spring semesters run concurrently with the university academic calendar except for the recitals, which are held at the end of Final exam Week. During Thanksgiving Break week ( November 18-25, 2018) there are no regular lessons, though it may be possible to schedule make-ups.

During the Fall and Spring semesters, students who meet eligibility requirements may apply for partial tuition remissions in the form of merit awards, financial aid, (need-based assistance), and/or courtesy discounts for multiple siblings. For details, see How to Apply.  No fee remissions or discounts are offered during the summer session. Serious young pianists of high intermediate to advanced level are strongly urged to apply to the Summer Piano Academy, which awards both merit scholarships and financial aid grants.

YP Handbook

For policies, guidelines and detailed information about the Young Pianists Program, click HERE to download the handbook.