Music Director/Composer

To apply, please send your cover letter and resume to with the position title in the subject line.

Position Summary

The Music Director (MD) and Composer is a mentor and artistic coach who works with at-risk young adults in our post-release program to help create original works. The MD reports to the Program Manager and supports the Artistic Lead with implementing creative programming and workshops to address social emotional learning. The MD is responsible for leading participants through the creative process to create their own music and compose original music inspired by the written stories of the program participants. The MD will participate in all rehearsals and performances. They must demonstrate collaborative skills and be a role model for others, especially in stressful situations. 

To be successful in this role you will have extensive experience with the piano/keyboard and familiarity or willingness to learn a variety of musical styles including hip-hop, musical theatre, jazz, gospel etc. You should be at ease creating music in a collaborative environment with individuals who have never made music before. The ideal candidate demonstrates maturity, respect regardless of background, and isn’t afraid to riff with the team or work alone to create music that brings out powerful emotion in simple and accessible ways. 

This is a part-time, hourly, in-person position averaging 12 hours per week. 

About the Changing Voices Program

Changing Voices is an employment program at Storycatchers Theatre composed primarily of emerging Black and Brown adults in the justice system who are 17-24 years of age. The program uses story-writing, performances, civic engagement, job/life skills training, and case management support to empower participants to meet personal goals. Under the guidance of trained teaching artists, participants collaborate to create various forms of art inspired by their personal stories while also receiving case management support. 


  • Collaborate with participants to create songs from their original stories, poems, and scripts.
  • Collaborate with other teaching artists to assist in vocalizing a song.
  • Contribute to program and staff meetings.
  • Score songs written for a performance.
  • Provide participants with coaching in basic musical interpretations. 
  • Accompany participants on the piano in a performance. 
  • Other duties as assigned.

Essential Skills and Qualifications

  • Must be an excellent piano player. 
  • Significant experience in performance and familiarity with hip hop and/or urban music.  
  • Experience working with underserved youth. 
  • Composing experience; excellent keyboard sight-reading skills. 
  • Proven ability to utilize digital musical platforms.  
  • Experience and comfort working with untrained people in an unpredictable environment. 
  • Must be able to meet tight deadlines. 
  • Self-starter and team player with a positive mindset 
  • Available for occasional weekend or evening events

Required Availability

  • An average of 12 hours per week scheduled during program hours.
    • The Changing Voices program operates Monday-Thursday from 10:00AM – 2:00PM in a Storycatchers Theatre space in Chicago, IL 60609.
    • Residential Programs operate weekday afternoons between 3:30 and 6p, exact timing and location based on program.
  • Assigned off-site prep time and team meetings are compensated.

About Storycatchers Theatre

Storycatchers Theatre guides young people to transform their past experiences into expressive arts-based presentations while developing the courage and vision to become leaders and mentors. By creating support for youth within the criminal justice system, Storycatchers prepares them to change their lives and emerge successfully from court involvement. We dedicate all our resources to meet the complex needs of adolescents and young adults who have become involved in the justice system. We have worked with young people in the Illinois juvenile justice system since 1990, developing and refining a nationally recognized, award-winning, trauma-informed creative youth development methodology. We conduct year-round residential programs in three separate juvenile justice facilities and offer a post-release performing arts jobs program, Changing Voices, to young people navigating reentry to Chicago.   

We are a collaborative organization that believes in committing to each other as well as the youth we serve. We implement a uniquely effective arts education model that helps marginalized young people develop the capacity to envision and pursue meaningful futures. We believe in second chances.