Music in the Loft is dedicated to advancing the professional careers of today's finest young musicians by providing a venue for the performance of chamber music in an intimate and acoustically superior setting. Our Composer-in-Residence program, Classics for Kids series, and Young Award Winners' Concerts support this goal, bringing chamber music to audiences of all ages and diverse levels of musical experience.


Music in the Loft came into being in spring 1992 with a single series of five Sunday afternoon concerts. Featured in the first season was a young string quartet whose members had only recently completed their schooling and who were attempting to establish themselves professionally. They called themselves the Ying Quartet. Then, relatively few had heard of them. Today, the Ying Quartet performs on five continents. They have been profiled in the New York Times, appeared on television’s prestigious cultural programs, participated in the country’s major music festivals, and now serve on the faculty at the Eastman School of Music. Their story exemplifies Music in the Loft’s mission: to discover today’s gifted young musicians, on the brink of major careers, and to give them performance opportunities in a major city in an intimate, nurturing, and acoustically superior setting.

A list of young artists who have performed at Music in the Loft at the start of their careers reads like a “Who’s Who of Chamber Music Today” They include Corigliano Quartet, winners of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award; the Pacifica Quartet, winners of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award; the Avalon Quartet, winners of the Fischoff, Coleman, and Carmel competitions; the Amelia Trio, who perform with Yo-Yo Ma in his Silk Road Project; pianist Adam Neiman, who a few years ago made his debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; Chu-Fang Huang, recent winner of the Cleveland Piano Competition and a finalist in the Van Cliburn Competition; the Biava Quartet, recent winners of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award; and Rachel Barton, one of today’s most sought-after soloists.

The last concert of every Music in the Loft series always features young award winners. These are promising young musicians who though still students, have already won important competitions. They audition a year before they are picked for a concert. Many of the students chosen to perform have been from the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra, Music Institute of Chicago and the Midwest Young Artists as well as from teachers who have called Music in the Loft’s attention to these talented students.