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Try MITA, Music's Digital Un-Textbook

Helping Presenting Organizations Democratize Their Musical Messages

Energize your outreach participants, audiences, staff, board, and even musicians by deepening their understanding with a fun-to-use program for exploring the music of the Western classical tradition and more.

MITA Is for Presenting Organizations!
How Does MITA Work?
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How Can My Organization Benefit from MITA?

“MITA is impressive and easy to use.”

Henry Fogel
Former President, League of American Orchestras & Chicago Symphony Orchestra

Give your program leaders easy-to-use multimedia tools that add world-class recordings, eye-catching photos, and interactive scores and diagrams to your outreach activities. Here are some sample ways you might use MITA that can be adapted from more than 125 works to fit your organization’s needs:

Deconstruct Sonata Form

Send a string quartet to a public school or senior home to explore one of classical music’s most time-tested strategies. As a prelude to a live performance, use MITA’s Eventful Story and Deep Glossary—replete with musical examples—to define sonata form and its inner workings; trace its origins in literature, and discuss why the word “form” is so problematic. Choose from among more than two dozen fully annotated examples in MITA (several from string quartets); invite participants to come forward and run the program to hear for themselves. This sound-based discussion (not a lecture!) opens the door for the performers to explain how sonata form was not some kind of recipe but rather a flexible means for creating a dramatic narrative. Their live performance will now live in a richer and more memorable context.

Introduce Beethoven

Most of your participants will have at least heard of him, but how much do they really know? Explore Beethoven’s troubled childhood, onset of deafness, and his status as the model for the modern hero. Use MITA for compelling visuals of Beethoven throughout his life and sound excerpts illustrating how his style evolved. How much was Beethoven’s music shaped by his life experiences? What was Beethoven’s influence on composers that came after him? Take an in-depth look at one or more of MITA’s eight symphonic, concerto, solo piano, and quartet works by Beethoven. Use the Interactive Scores to explore how he achieved some of his most recognizable moments (such as the opening or the development to the Fifth Symphony). Use a Listening Guide (the final movement of the String Quartet in C-sharp minor, perhaps?) to reveal how Beethoven inserted drama into a work. Then present a live piano trio, string quartet, or other chamber work by Beethoven, inviting participants to talk about what they hear.

Dive into World-Class Performances

Let’s take opera as an example (though MITA features legendary orchestras, conductors, chamber groups, and early music ensembles as well). What was so unforgettable about Pavarotti and Joan Sutherland? Listen to them perform Rigoletto side-by-side, supported by the London Symphony Orchestra. What decisions do they make that shape their understanding of Verdi’s score and Piave’s libretto? Use the Listening Guide to introduce novices to creative tactics used by Verdi to maximize the sense of tragedy. Head over to the Interactive Score to explore in more detail the performance directions that performers work with as they make their decisions. What is the ideal balance of power between singers, conductors, and orchestras? View the Weblink videos to examine the further roles played by directors as well as lighting, costume and set designers.

Make a Lasting Impact

As much as you want to get out into the community and to advocate for music, long-term outreach activities involving continued contact with participants over a period of time can be financially prohibitive. Awarding outreach participants with a MITA subscription for a year, or even for a month, is a cost-effective way of maintaining participants’ interest in your music beyond the initial contact. We will work with you on discounts for bulk subscription purchases that fit your budget. Consider sending participants weekly emails with “assignments” that follow a custom learning template that you can use and develop year after year. Send quizzes with concert tickets as prizes. MITA can be used with outreach participants ages 6-96, and there are countless ways to mold MITA to your specific outreach goals. If you are stumped or want to bounce ideas off of someone, just contact us. Our team is here to help.

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Interest in anything—travel, baseball, cooking—is invariably linked to our inside knowledge. MITA makes no attempt to sell classical music the old-fashioned way by claiming that it brings about “moral improvement” or heightens your social profile. Rather, MITA speaks truthfully about a great tradition whose relevance is often lost in the rush to get attendees to “appreciate” things they have no reason to understand. It affords current and potential audience members the chance to hone their chops quickly and enjoyably, to develop lasting relationships with your music. How can you plug MITA in?

Special Perks

Offer MITA as a subscription and/or donor perk. Write us to inquire about generous discounts on bulk purchases of licenses.

Exclusive Discounts

Encourage audience members to download MITA in your newsletters, social media, and blogs. Offer the free MITA Sampler, or work with us to provide discounts on the subscription version.

Dynamic Concert Talks

Use MITA and its powerful multimedia tools for pre/post-concert talks (you might implement some of the ideas for using MITA in outreach programs).

Connection-Strengthening Clubs

Start MITA “book clubs with music,” attended (and even led) by audience members who meet monthly to discuss issues around classical music, with your organization as a unifying force and MITA as years’ worth of fodder.

Lobby Learning Stations

Set up computer stations in your lobby where attendees can explore music before concerts and at intermissions.

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Rare is the staff or board where everyone feels secure in their level of knowledge. MITA’s multi-layered approach, which welcomes novices and challenges experts, offers a means of filling in gaps with maximum efficiency, enjoyment, and long-term benefit.

Artistic Planners

Bone up on the many contexts in which the music you program was written, whether by time period or for specific styles or works.


Strengthen your sense of connection between individual programs and their relevance to today’s world. Identify hooks about the works and styles of the season that your public would find interesting, converting potential audience members into attendees.


Maintain an integrated resource for music history, theory, and performance—including scores and recordings—for use by musicians, staff, and audience members.

Program Annotators

Use MITA as a sounding reference source for new ideas.

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Increasingly, musicians are expected to be articulate ambassadors for what they do on stage. Some have had their education overshadowed by time in the practice room. Boards increasingly count on a core of ensemble leaders to help bring in new audiences. MITA is tailor-made for performers who want to up their game quickly and keep it there.

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A skeptical Premier Chou En Lai looks on as President Nixon tries to impress him in Act II of John Adams’s “Nixon in China.”

How Does MITA Work?

MITA has been created over a decade of development by a world-class team with more than a combined century of experience with interactive learning about music. Its four interwoven sections enable a fully integrated approach to discovering music, putting game-changing tools in the hands of arts administrators:

An Eventful Story | Listening Guides | Interactive Scores | Deep Glossary

AN EVENTFUL STORY: Relevant and engaging

An account of Handel's colorful life
Fun to Read

An account of Handel's colorful life

An account of Handel's colorful life

An account of Handel's colorful life

Screenshot of the Tables of Contents shows various options for sorting centuries of music's stories

A view of the contents included in An Eventful Story's book 6, chronologically the last

A view of the contents included in An Eventful Story's book 6, chronologically the last

A view of the contents included in An Eventful Story's book 6, chronologically the last

A screenshot of a page introducing popular music, with a photo of Bing Crosby and a video link
Modern and Outward-Looking

Beginning of a chapter discussing the rise of popular music

Beginning of a chapter discussing the rise of popular music

Beginning of a chapter discussing the rise of popular music

A screenshot of a section of MITA dedicated to Chinese music, with a video of Qin Xiao Ning demonstrating the sounds of the guzheng
Modern and Outward-Looking

Master performer Qin Xiao Ning demonstrates the sounds of the Chinese guzheng

Master performer Qin Xiao Ning demonstrates the sounds of the Chinese guzheng

Master performer Qin Xiao Ning demonstrates the sounds of the Chinese guzheng

A screenshot of a page of MITA dedicated to Sousa's "Stars and Stripes Forever", with buttons to "Play" or go to the listening guide, score, or a web video

Buttons and text link to various sections of MITA

Buttons and text link to various sections of MITA. Clicking the "Play" button will start Sousa's "The Stars and Stripes Forever" from here within An Eventful Story

Buttons and text link to various sections of MITA. Clicking the "Play" button will start Sousa's "The Stars and Stripes Forever" from here within An Eventful Story

A screenshot of the Tables of Contents, sorted by geographical region

An Eventful Story sorted by region

An Eventful Story sorted by region, with Austria/Germany selected

An Eventful Story sorted by region, with Austria/Germany selected

A screenshot of an image from MITA that shows one of the paintings that "Pictures at an Exhibition" sought to express in music
Smartly Illustrated

An enlarged image related to Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition"

An enlarged image of one of the pictures that Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition" aimed to express in music

An enlarged image of one of the pictures that Mussorgsky's "Pictures at an Exhibition" aimed to express in music

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Highlights of An Eventful Story


Written by award-winning UCLA Distinguished Professor of Music Robert Winter.

Fun to Read

Make sense of music’s stories by learning about their rich cultural contexts, tied to everyday experiences (like baseball!).


Explore the rich story of the orchestra’s development, from Corelli (b. 1653) to John Adams (b. 1947) and beyond.

Modern and Outward-Looking

Alongside Western orchestral music, MITA also covers choral music, opera, popular music, and a growing collection of global musics, the latter through intimate video encounters with gifted performers.


Jump seamlessly back and forth between An Eventful Story, Listening Guides, and Interactive Scores, with an unparalleled Deep Glossary available from every screen.

Contents Sortable Eight Different Ways

Find what you are looking for through the lenses that most apply to you, including chronology, composer, genre, geography, and more.

Smartly Illustrated

Clicking on in-text thumbnails brings up hundreds of full-screen images and full captions—perfect for use in informal or formal presentations.

LISTENING GUIDES: More than 160 prose accounts linked to sounding music

Highlights of Listening Guides

Interactive Design

Bouncing blocks take listeners of all levels through each section of every piece. To hear any location (“Closing area,” for example), simply click on it, and voila.

World-Class Recordings

MITA teems with performances by world-class artists, from the Berlin Philharmonic to the Takacs Quartet, from Dame Joan Sutherland to Sir Georg Solti.

Vocal Texts Made Intelligible

For vocal works, the Listening Guides include both the original language and custom “sense” English translations (rather than misleading “singing” translations).


MITA’s Listening Guides include detailed background and full commentary.

Layered Approach

Most Guides include two levels: Level 1 assumes no prior musical training, while Level 2 challenges more advanced listeners to connect what they hear to musical ideas and language they already know.

INTERACTIVE SCORES: Over 120 annotated scores brought to life

Highlights of Interactive Scores

Bouncing Blocks

As the music plays continuously, MITA’s interactive bouncing blocks guide novices and experts alike through each bar. Stop and start from wherever you choose.

Supercharged Introductions

Each score opens with a detailed overview. Clicking on any location in the overview takes you instantly to that location in the Score and starts playing; shift+click starts anywhere in the music while staying on the overview.

Insightful Annotations

Easily readable red text points out the most salient features on each page. Musical terms are linked to their Deep Glossary entries. Clicking “More” on the bottom of many pages delves even deeper into what the music reveals.

Easy Navigation

Go through a score page by page, jump to a specific page number, or click on “Go To” to play from a specific moment in the piece (“Coda,” for example).

You’re in Control

Want to just silently read or listen to a score on your own? With a single click turn off the commentary and bouncing blocks and have at it.

DEEP GLOSSARY: A unique approach to a wealth of terms and ideas

Highlights of the Deep Glossary

Multimedia Richness

Don't just read definitions: hear and see them! In-text “Play” buttons illustrate written concepts. Hundreds of textual pop-ups tell you exactly what you are hearing.

Helpful Ordering

An alphabetical index is supplemented by the Musical Languages Guide, which builds knowledge step-by-step, from the most basic concepts (“music”) to the most advanced (“modified strophic form” or “disability studies”).

Dynamic Linking

Terms found in each definition are themselves linked to their own definitions (with an easy retrace), and works referenced are linked back to An Eventful Story.

“Deep” Means “Deep”

Many entries offer extended essays with further suggestions for “More Reading.”

Help with English, Too

Straightforward definitions for over 1000 challenging non-musical English words. Every word includes an audio pronunciation.
Leonard Bernstein, shortly after his momentous debut with the New York Philharmonic

Obtain MITA, Per Your Unique Needs

Downloading the Expanded MITA Sampler is quick, easy, and the ideal way to find out what the program is all about. For 30 days you’ll have access to about 40% of MITA’s full-featured content. Best of all, after your 30 days are over, the program will run the basic MITA Sampler, which is free and yours to keep for as long as music flows through your veins. Complete the mini-form below to launch your download!

*I agree to receive occasional updates about MITA and to the Privacy Policy, End User License Agreement, and Terms and Conditions.

Note: MITA is currently available only for Mac and Windows computers. If you would like detailed instructions or encounter issues with anti-virus software, please refer to the MITA installation instructions here.

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Nonsense-Free Subscription Options

Three options for subscribing to the full version of MITA fit varying needs and budgets. Pay as you go, with no contracts or commitments and a rate that never rises for continuous subscribers, even as prices for new customers do. With our satisfaction guarantee, if you try out a subscription version of MITA and within 30 days decide it’s not for you, we’ll refund the cost, no questions asked. We add fresh content to MITA regularly (grayed-out items within the program are ones coming soon). It is all included as part of your regular subscription.

Now through November 30

We’re celebrating MITA’s launch with annual subscription discounts that will make you want to sing a high C! Save even more over what was already your best-value subscription option, and renew at the same low rate in subsequent years.

  • Monthly: $12.95
  • 6-Month: $64.95 (saves 16% vs. Monthly)
  • Annual: $124.95 (like getting over two months free!) $99.95 (like getting over four months free vs. monthly!)

Subscribe Now

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Contact us to coordinate bulk license purchases of subscriptions for use with your outreach leaders and participants, season subscribers, donors, staff, board, musicians, and beyond. We’ll also work with you to offer exclusive discounts that appeal to your public.

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