about us



Northeast Iowa School of Music is a non-profit community music school located in Dubuque, Iowa whose mission, vision, and core values reflect our desire to best serve our musical families.

Instructional programs are available for preschoolers through senior citizens. In addition to instruction, Northeast Iowa School of Music provides the community with performing ensembles and a variety of community events and concerts.

Our facilities include private studios, a piano lab, a lobby, and administrative offices located in Fountain Park, Dubuque, IA, in the Springs Building, second floor (around the back to the left when entering the parking lot from Asbury Street).

Northeast Iowa School of Music is a 501(c) 3 (non-profit) corporation; all donations are tax-deductible. (Scholarship assistance may be available to those who qualify.)

Hand of young cello player gliding fiddlestick across strings while performing piece of music in front of camera
Focus pupil playing violin in classroom at elementary school


Northeast Iowa School of Music was founded in 2001 by Tracey Rush, a professional music educator, violist, and composer. Tracey Rush was frustrated teaching lessons out of her home and driving her kids to multiple locations on multiple days for their lessons on various instruments. For years, she envisioned a school where parents could bring all their kids and where teachers could teach outside of their homes. Eventually, her dream location became a reality.

A former church and monastery that stood empty for many years were in the infant stages of becoming a new business complex now known as Fountain Park. Tracey quickly claimed a floor that was then renovated into her imagined music school, transforming dormitories into teaching studios and shower space into a faculty workroom and kitchen.

The school opened in the fall of 2001 with approximately 50 students, having been granted non-profit status in February of that year.

   In 2005, Northeast Iowa School of Music completed a comprehensive evaluation with the National Guild for Community Arts Education and was awarded certified membership. Guild members must meet rigid criteria, such as employing qualified faculty and staff, offering a sequential curriculum that responds to community needs, operating a well-equipped facility, and serving students at various aptitude levels with access to financial aid.

Students/Participants Per Year
NISOM student practice hours per year