EISMA was founded in 1971 by a group of music educators, community members, and parents, in response to the elimination of instrumental music education in Evanston/Skokie school District 65. At that time, EISMA began to provide instruments and music instruction, in addition to concerts and demonstrations in the schools.
When instrumental music programs were reinstated, EISMA changed its focus to offering Concerts for Kids, live professional music programs, twice a year. These in-school performances are offered at no charge to either the students or the schools.
Since 1971, our mission has been to empower students with a knowledge of and an appreciation for the diversity and influence of the world's music. While enriching their cultural perspective, students are enabled to experience the joy of music both as an art form and as a means of personal creative expression.
EISMA has received the Arts in Education Award from the Evanston Arts Council “for continuous and outstanding contributions to arts in education in Evanston,” and the 2005 Mayor's Award for the Arts.EISMA has received grants from the Illinois Arts Council and the Evanston Arts Council.
An excellent article about EISMA appeared in the Evanston Review on March 21, 2002.