Creative Ability Development

Teacher Training and Workshops 2024


February 17 -February 19

Teacher Training

August 19 – August 23

Teacher Trainer: Wrap Around program

 August 17 – August 24

CAD Teacher Training
3 Days – 3 Levels

March 26 – March 28


CAD Teacher Training 2024:

This summer the Kanack School of Musical Artistry will be offering two overlapping courses, both taught by author, Alice Kanack.

  • Retreat: Join us for this annual inspiring weekend of CAD activities, improvisations, food, and fun. Everyone is welcome, whether exploring this innovative method for the first time, or celebrating our special community of CAD teachers and trainers. Help celebrate the past and guide the future as we plan conferences, trainings, camps, and more!
    Absolutely free, fabulous, and fun!  


  • Teacher Training and Workshop:  Our traditional 5-day CAD Teacher Training for new and returning teachers where teachers are introduced to the CAD method with sessions focused on the philosophy, practical application, and benefits of the method as well as the skills needed to begin using it with students. The workshop will be available both in-person in Rochester, NY, and online via Zoom.
      • August 19-23, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm daily
      • Tuition is $500 for new attendees (Tuition is free for returning teachers)
      • Register HERE
  • Teacher Trainer Certification:  An 8-day course designed for previously trained CAD teachers with at least one year of CAD teaching experience who wish to become leaders in the world of CAD by training other teachers how to use CAD. In-person attendance is preferred, but online attendance will be considered.
      • August 17 – 24, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm daily
      • Tuition is $300
      • Register HERE
  • CAD Teacher Training 3 Days-3 Levels:

Day 1 – Beginner Level
Teachers will explore the exciting new Playing From the Heart and Book of Games materials through discussions, observations, and experiential learning. These books and recordings teach children to play with excellent technique while at the same time beginning the journey of growing their own, expressive voice. Teachers will leave with a solid understanding of how to use these materials with absolute beginners in group and private lessons and learn how to use them in any classroom or private setting.

Day 2 – Intermediate Level
Teachers will explore the Fun Improvisation series and the more advanced levels of the Book of Games through discussions, observations, and experiential learning. These materials are aimed at students in levels 1-4 of traditional or Suzuki pedagogical systems. Teachers will explore how to use these materials with intermediate students in group and private lessons and learn how to use them in any classroom or private setting.

Day 3 – Advanced Level
Teachers will explore Basslines and Fantasies and Improvising String Quartets texts and recordings. Basslines and Fantasies teach advanced creative skills while developing the student’s ability to improvise in any key. Improvising String Quartets teaches advanced students to collaborate creatively with their peers in an intelligent and sensitive manner, while further developing and establishing their own, unique voice. As these materials are best understood through personal experience, they will be taught in this way.

*Financial assistance is available!

What is CAD?

Creative Ability Development (CAD) is a method that uses musical improvisation as a tool to develop the creative side of the brain. Its pedagogical purpose is to teach unique self-expression or musicality. Its philosophical purpose is to develop the ethical character of artistry in every student, which is the search for, and expression of, truth and beauty. CAD teaches students how to create together and share ideas, and inspires in each student a non-competitive internal drive for excellence. The CAD method is based on research, which explains how the process of creativity works in the brain to solve problems. Using music as a language and improvisation as a tool, the method of CAD replicates the creative process through group games and solo exercises. Through the disciplined practice of the CAD method, all students can develop their innate creativity to a very high level.

Recently CAD has begun to explore its methods using art forms other than music. We have partnered with the Garth Fagan Dance School to explore the use of improvised movement and have begun a preschool class using visual art, movement, storytelling, and music as tools to teach and grow creativity at a young age when it can be most effective. In 2018 The Kanack School of Musical Artistry will again partner with Garth Fagan Dance to bring their preschool CAD program to downtown Rochester with the support of a $25,000 challenge grant from the William G. McGowan Charitable Fund.

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