Peter Saltzman

Theory Faculty

"My goal in developing a theory program for the New Music School is to help you uncover some of the mystery of how music works. By learning theory the right way, you can only enhance your skill, artistry, and joy in making music—whether you’re playing standard repertoire, composing new music, or improvising." - Peter

THEORY at
New Music School

Under the direction of acclaimed professor, composer, and performer Peter Saltzman, this new multifaceted program will feature both classroom learning and more casual sessions for beginners. Peter's approach to the study of theory is to emphasize the connection between theory and performance; how understanding a piece's musical structure allows a performer to get so much more out of it. Music theory at NMS is less a dry academic discipline and more an artistic endeavor.

Theory at New Music School uses the Music Development Program from the Royal Conservatory of Music for students 18 & Under. For Adult students, NMS will use a separate text.


Table Theory - Beginning music theory (Levels 1-3) in a casual setting, at the square table in New Music School. This type of lesson is designed to combine both independent learning and private instruction; students work through their books, while a theory instructor is available to help them through it, using a variety of high-tech methods to enable collaboration and demonstration with the whole class. These sessions will be 30 minutes long, and can be taken before or after a lesson

Advanced Theory 18 Under - More advanced theory in a classroom setting. Once a student reaches Level 4, they will be placed in Classroom Theory. This type of setting allows for the focused, in-depth learning that is required for more advanced theoretical concepts. Classroom Theory will be taught by Peter Saltzman. 

Adult Theory - Adult students also have the option to take theory classes. Adult Theory classes will use the same curriculum as the other classes, These will be held in a classroom setting, and will be taught by Peter Saltzman. 

Private Lesson Theory - Students can elect to have their theory instruction during their private lessons with their private teachers, or can choose to study with Peter Saltzman privately at NMS. Cost for this instruction is at the rate of the private lesson teacher. Students must take a minimum 45 minute lesson to have theory included in their private study. 


Fall 2018 Schedule

Table Theory

  • Aug 26, 2018- Dec 22, 2018
    • Tues-Fri 3-7pm
    • Saturdays 9am-2pm
    • $200

Advanced Theory 18 Under

  • Aug 26-Dec 22, 2018
    • Saturdays 1:15-2:15pm
    • 16 sessions
    • $500

Adult Theory

  • Sep 9-Dec 5, 2018
    • Wednesdays 7-8:30pm
    • 12 sessions
    • $500

Sign Up!

Call 312-612-1969 to enroll in theory!