Student Information

The Summer Session of City Voices is starting Monday, June 5! We will be offering a lot of great new classes, camps and workshops, as well as some old favorites! And, of course, everyone gets a free 30-minute voice lesson!

Print the application below, and return to your teacher or Mrs. Sims! You may mail it to 924 45th Street, Des Moines, IA 50312, or call/text Mrs. Sims at 515-681-6234, and she will arrange to pick it up!

Summer 2017 application

AND – you can sign up for Enrichment Classes here!


INDIVIDUAL VOICE LESSONS – Instructor: arranged. Students receive a weekly, free, 30-minute private voice lesson with a highly qualified instructor. Times mutually arranged between student and teaching artist.

INDIVIDUAL GUITAR LESSONS – Instructors: Dang Felton, Dartanyan Brown. Students receive a weekly, free individual guitar lesson with a highly qualified instructor. Times mutually arranged between student and teaching artist.

KEYBOARD THEORY – Instructor: Chris Powell. This class will introduce you to keyboard skills, focusing on practical skills needed to begin to accompany yourself and play your part/songs. You will learn to read play and create music. You will learn music theory from contemporary and popular music based on the renowned Berklee College of Music’s PULSE online theory course, including video, audio and composition. Recommended for students who want to study music in college, or other interested students, all ages. Monday, Wednesday, Fridays every week, 12:00 noon-1 p.m.

COLLEGE PREP MUSIC THEORY – Instructors: Mary Anne Sims, Daniela Ortiz, staff. This class will study topics covered in a typical first-year college music theory class. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED for students considering taking the AP Music Theory test, or those who plan to study music in college. High School. Wednesdays every week, 1-2 p.m.

“HOW TO COLLEGE” – Instructors: Varied. This class will cover topics related to college including college search, application, financial aid, study habits, campus life, majors (music and other) and other issues. Highly recommended for high school, especially first-generation students. Parents welcome and encouraged to attend. Thursdays every week, 6-7:30 p.m.

MUSICAL THEATRE CAMP (HIGH SCHOOL) – Instructor: Michael Xayavong. The Musical Theatre Camp is designed to help give students access to training in voice, acting, and dance to build essential skills in performing. Through several workshops, the program aims to help students of all skill levels by giving them tools they can apply to their performing/fine arts programs at their school. June 5-16, 9 a.m.-12 p.m. daily.

MUSICAL THEATRE CAMP (MIDDLE SCHOOL) – Instructor: Napoleon Douglas. The Middle School Musical Theatre Camp is dedicated to introducing the young performer to what it takes to create their own musical theatre pieces. Inspired by theatrical performances of today. students will collaboratively compose and choreograph a performance they can share with their loved ones. June 5-16, 1 p.m-4 p.m. daily.

A CAPPELLA – Instructor: Napoleon Douglas, Mary Anne Sims, Chris Powell. Use your vocal skills in a contemporary singing group! Think “Pitch Perfect!” Learn the part-singing and vocal percussion that makes this a hot trend! June 19-23, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

SONGWRITING CAMP – Instructor: TBA. This workshop style camp will focus on assisting students in composing their own musical work. From learning chord structure to writing melodic lines to improving lyrics, this class will give you all the tools necessary to be the next big songwriter: June 26-30, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

THEATER ENSEMBLE CAMP – Instructor: John Spinks, staff, TBA. This ensemble-based class will give students the opportunity to work on small and large ensemble musical theatre pieces (duets, trios). Harmonious singing, character work and stage presence will be the emphasis as you collaborate with peers and professionals in the field. July 5-14, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

GUITAR INSTRUMENTAL TECHNIQUES – Instructor: Dartanyan Brown. Students will learn the fundamentals necessary to perform a variety of American roots music styles. Rock, Blues, Folk, and Rhythm and Blues styles are emphasized. Intermediate and Advanced students will be introduced to Jazz improvisation. July 17-28, 9 a.m-10 a.m. daily.

TELLING STORIES WITH MUSIC TECHNOLOGY – Instructor: Dartanyan Brown. With activities ranging from songwriting to sound design and using both sample-based and field-recorded audio sources, students will create recorded projects reflecting their interests and goals. July 17-28, 10 a.m.-12 noon.



Thinking about majoring in music? Check out this article with lots of helpful hints!

About Us. City Voices is a community-centered non-profit music education program that provides free voice lessons to eligible students who cannot otherwise afford them.

Voice Lessons. The core of City Voices centers around a thirty minute private lesson with professionally trained instructors. We are here to meet you where you are in your development.  We will contact you to arrange a lesson time around your schedule.

NOTE: When Des Moines Public Schools are canceled, there will be no lessons.  Make-up lessons may be scheduled later in the semester, with the agreement of both student and teacher.  Please call or text Mary Anne Sims with any questions.




CITY VOICES SINGERS AT BRAVO COMMUNITY GALA – Tuesday, June 13. Des Moines Art Center.

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