Fun Music Lessons Exclusively for Residents of Lake Forest, Lake Bluff, & Knollwood -INSPIRING YOUTH SINCE 2001

Activator Academy Staff Bios, A vailability

We are pleased to present the bios and schedules of our staff members.  At Activator Academy, in partnership with CROYA,  we specialize in empowering  young people to learn and to bring out the best in themselves.   Our qualified Music Instructors build a positive relationship with students - allowing them to feel encouraged, respected and valued...This in turn, helps students to become more creative and more capable. We see GREAT potential in every young person that enters our doors every day!


or call #847-477-7967 to make a reservation or to discuss placement questions. 

Ami Crawford- Little Dreamers

Ami has been directing "Little Dreamers" and teaching Voice, Piano, Uke and Guitar at Activator Academy since the opening of the new CROYA Student Union. She is very thankful for the opportunity to work in such an exciting environment. She is a 2008 graduate of Lake Forest College with a double major in Music and Communication.  She works at the First Presbyterian Preschool in Lake Forest, IL as a Music Teacher.  While she enjoys working with children of all ages, teaching the fundamentals of music to beginners is her specialty. Ami loves spending time with her husband Andrew and two children, Jimmy and Emi! 
Ami is currently teaching Little Dreamers on Saturday mornings! 

Tony Porter- Violin, Viola, Cello and String Ensemble. 
Online Lessons: Monday,Thursdays, Friday's & Saturdays.

Tony Porter is our string instructor at Activator Academy.  Tony has performed all over the world and has mingled with the greats, including Yo-Yo Ma.  He has decades of teaching experience and is a perfect choice for beginning or advanced students. 

Sam Subar

Drummer / Percussionist

Online Lessons: Available 

5pm- 9pm Monday - Sunday

Sam Subar, a native of the Chicagoland area, began playing drums at age 11. With a natural sensibility behind the kit and the ability to learn by ear early on, Sam’s relationship with rhythm and music bloomed quickly. It didn’t take long for him to realize music would be a passion he’d want to pursue for the rest of his life. Sam’s adolescent years revolved around continually improving behind the drum set through: practicing at home and taking private lessons, participating in his high school music program, and playing professionally with a variety of groups in various musical contexts both locally and internationally. After graduating high school, Sam had the great fortune of attending Berkeley College of Music on scholarship where he took his drumming to new heights and graduated with honors in 2019. Once completing his degree, Sam moved back to Chicago where he currently spends his time pursuing a freelance career in teaching, performing, producing, and djing. Sam is passionate about spreading his love for rhythm and music with others. He mentors individuals of all ages through sharing everything he’s learned and teaches the necessary techniques to open one’s heart, mind, and four-way coordination to the endless musical possibilities that exist behind the drum set. 

Clayton Kyle
Guitar,Bass & Ukulele

Online Lessons: Available
Monday,Wednesday,Friday 12-9 am
Tuesday, Thursday 2-8 pm
Saturday 9:30 am- 5 pm

Clayton Kyle is a graduate of Berkeley college of music. He is heavily influenced by the classic rock he grew up on as well as more modern bands like Cage the Elephant and Arctic Monkeys. When not playing music he enjoys running and the occasional West Wing episode.

Referrals have been critically important to the outstanding growth of our organization over the past 11 years. Refer a friend to Activator Academy today by filling out our quick Referral Form. If they enroll for at least 1 month of lessons, you will receive 1 FREE lesson! There is no limit to the number of FREE lessons you can please help us spread the word about Activator Academy!