Free Beginner Music Classes

We are very pleased to offer you free music lessons, thanks to a small annual grant from the Ministry of Education. 

These classes are for primary and intermediate school children only, and are intended to be introductory music classes so that young people can get a taste of music and trial various instruments. The Ministry monitors our programme very carefully. To allow access for as many students as possible, students are not permitted to attend more than one of these classes concurrently, and tuition is for 8 weeks per term, for a maximum of a year (with occasional exceptions).

IMPORTANT. Due to the popularity of these free classes, they are often full. Your child may not be able to enrol immediately in the class of their choice, but we may offer an alternative, or put them on a waiting list so that they won't miss out.

Please note that students of our free beginner classes need to be enrolled as a student of Nelson Centre of Musical Arts. There is a small $25 annual fee associated with this. More enrolment information can be found here.

I cannot speak highly enough of NCMA. The team of experienced teachers and staff are enthusiastic and passionate about what they do. The Free Beginner Classes provide an excellent platform for the children to be able to get a “feel or taste” for an instrument without the huge investment should they decide not to pursue it. Our experience has been fabulous, with both our girls learning recorder then moving on to flute. More recently they chose violin and have relished the opportunity to learn a new instrument together. Further testament to the quality of teaching is that they both wish to continue with both instruments.

Angela Taylor, parent

Cello – Free Beginner Class

Instruments: Cello

Lessons are designed to give students a solid introduction to the cello.


Contemporary Guitar – Free Beginner Class

Instruments: Guitar

Our free beginner classes for guitar allow our students to learn in a small group at no charge. This is a great introductory music class allowing children to get a taste of the guitar.


Piano – Free Beginner Class

Instruments: Piano

This free beginner piano class provides an affordable option for learning an instrument in a group setting. Classes will run depending on interest and require a minimum of 3 students so bring a friend and join the fun!


Trumpet – Free Beginner Class

Instruments: Trumpet

Our free beginner classes for trumpet allow our students to learn in a small group at no charge. This is a great introductory music class enabling children to try the trumpet. Students will learn to play the trumpet and to read music.  No prior music experience is necessary


Ukulele – Free Beginner Class

Instruments: Ukulele

Classes will cover the basics of ukulele playing with chords, strumming and some finger picking introduced along with singing. We will introduce new songs each week concentrating on having fun and learning new ideas of how to play ukulele as well as sing on each tune.  


Violin – Free Beginner Class


Free beginner classes for violin allow our students to learn to play violin in a small group at no charge, giving children a fun introduction to the instrument!


My daughters enjoy the free violin lessons they have been having at NCMA and their connection with the great teachers they have had. I am grateful that the free group lessons give us the opportunity to experiment with instruments, learning which instrument suits each child, without cost beyond a small instrument hire fee. Music is invaluable in all that it offers a child, so this levelling of the playing field, as offered by NCMA is a wonderful thing. It could well lead to a lifetime love of the violin for one of my daughters.

Naomi Stephenson, parent