Summer Music Camps & Programs

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Plan Your 2018 Summer of Music!

Summer music programs are indispensable whether you’re thinking about majoring in music or simply wanting more music in your life. Visit the camps and programs on this page to learn more. This list is updated through the spring, so check back often.

How to Get Started

Click on these links to learn more:

1. Music camps and programs in the U.S. and abroad: Camp & Program Ads and Geographical Listings

2. Guidance for students and parents: How to Choose a Summer Music Program.

3. Job opportunities for college students: Summer Jobs Section.

 

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2018 Geographical Listings by State + International

(additional programs will be added regularly through Spring 2018!)

Boston Conservatory Opera Intensive at Valencia (Spain)
Focus: Serious opera study for undergraduates and recent undergraduates, voice major not required.
Dates: June 3-23

The Ingenium Academy International Music Summer School (London, UK)
Focus: Orchestral, vocal, piano, saxophone, conducting, chamber music, composition.
Dates: July 15-Aug.12

Oberlin in Italy
Focus: Intensive Italian opera training program in Tuscany (for singers, pianists, instrumentalists, conductors, stage directors, design & production artists). Includes private lessons, coaching, master classes, language study.
Dates: July 7-Aug. 7

VSO Orchestral Institute at Whistler
Focus: Orchestral + chamber music performance for all orchestral instruments. Concerto competition.
Dates: June 24-July 3

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

Idyllwild Arts Summer Program
Focus: Band, chamber music, choir, harp, jazz, orchestra, piano, songwriting.
Dates: Vary by program, June-Aug.

Stanford Summer Arts Institute
Focus: Session 1: Music Matters – exploring a wide range of genres from classical to popular with opportunities to compose and perform. Session 2: Music, Technology & Culture – analyze popular music and its technologies. No prior music experience required.
Dates: Session 1: June 25 – July 14; Session 2: July 17-Aug. 4

University of the Pacific Music Camp
Focus: Brubeck Institute Jazz Camp; Pacific Music Business Camp; Senior Band, Orchestra, Choir Camp; Pacific Music Theatre Camp; Senior Piano Camp.
Dates: 7-day programs June-July

University of Southern California
Focus: Guitar Seminar: Jazz, Rock and Beyond. Includes classical repertoire, sight-reading, theory, improvisation, technique. Studio Jazz and Popular Music faculty.
Dates: June 17-July 14

Colorado Conservatory for the Jazz Arts
Jazz in the Sangres Camp
Focus: Small group/improv and big band focus, plus master classes, jam sessions, workshops, performances, activities for high school musicians. Horns, drums, piano, guitar, bass, vibes.
Dates: July 17-21

CU Denver: LYNX Camp
Focus: Audio Production; Music Industry – singer/songwriter, recording arts, music business, performance/ensembles.
Dates: June 11-15 (Audio Production); June 17-29 (Music Industry)

Lamont School of Music Summer Academy
Focus: Classical; all instruments including guitar, voice, composition. Private lessons, chamber music, orchestra, wind ensemble, choir, music theatre, music theory, recitals, master classes.
Dates: June 17–July 1

Metropolitan State University of Denver Summer Flute Institute
Focus: Flute study – classes, individual and group coaching.
Dates: June 11-15

The Hartt School Community Division
Focus: Meet the Masters instrumental jazz; Summer Musical Theatre Intensive; Young Composers Project; Music Industry Program.
Dates: Vary by program, end of June through early August.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

Florida State University College of Music
Focus: Band Camp, Choral Ensemble Camp, Double Bass Workshop, Guitar Workshop, Honors Chamber Winds Camp, Jazz Ensemble Camp, Marching Band Leadership Camp, Piano Camp, Piano Institute, String Orchestra Camp.
Dates: Vary by program, June-July

Frost Young Musicians’ Camp
Focus: Classical music, jazz, rock, musical theater and contemporary voice, composition, songwriting.
Dates: July

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

Indiana University Jacobs School of Music
Focus: Summer Music Academies and Workshops for Piano, Strings, Saxophone, Brass, Percussion, Organ, and College Audition Preparation.
Dates: Vary by program, from mid-June through end of July

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

Intermuse International Music Institute & Festival USA
Focus: Strings (violin, viola, cello) and piano. Solo & chamber music.
Dates: July 6-15

Boston Conservatory at Berklee
Focus: Musical Theatre Dance Intensive; Vocal Choral Intensive; High School Composition Intensive; Opera (see International listing).
Dates: Vary by program, June-July

Walnut Hill Summer Theatre Program
Focus: 5-week boarding program, ages 13-17, daily classes in acting, musical theater, dance and opportunities to perform.
Dates: June 18-July 21

Interlochen Summer Arts Camp
Focus: Multi-week programs in orchestra and wind symphony; advanced string quartet; harp; composition; organ; piano; voice; jazz; rock; singer-songwriter; musical theatre. 1-week institutes in strings; woodwinds; brass; percussion; piano; musical theatre.
Dates: Vary by program, June-August

University of Michigan MPulse
Focus: Performing arts institutes in bassoon, clarinet,  flute, harp, horn, jazz, oboe, percussion, trumpet, musical theatre, vocal arts, and Center Stage Strings. Also dance, theatre and drama.
Dates: Vary by program, June-August

Western Michigan University
Focus: Pre-college experience for serious musicians in strings, vocal/choral, woodwinds, brass, percussion, piano, or composition.
Dates: July 8-21

Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University
Focus: Music Theory & Ear Training; Summer Jazz Institute; Symphonic Wind Band and Chamber Music Camp; Summer Acting Conservatory – Musical Theatre Track.
Dates: Vary by program, June-Aug.

William Paterson University Summer Jazz Workshop
Focus: Summer Jazz Workshop: performance and improvisation, arranging, jazz history. Jimmy Heath, artist-in-residence. Commuter programs in classical, jazz & rock guitar; audio recording; rock band; songwriting and music industry.
Dates: July

French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts
Focus: Musical Theatre; Vocals; Orchestra; Jazz; Rock and Roll. Full camp setting includes water + other sports; dance; art; theatre; circus; magic.
Dates: June 3 –Sept. 3; 2 1/2 week sessions.

Ithaca College Summer Music Academy
Focus: Orchestra; vocal; wind ensemble (band); jazz. For intermediate and advanced music students.
Dates: July 8-21

Summer@Eastman
Focus: On-campus, residential programs: Classical (Music Horizons); Jazz (Summer Jazz Studies); Cello Institute; Saxophone Institute; Trombone Institute; Trumpet Institute. All include lessons, theory, master classes, more.
Dates: Vary by program, July-August

Syracuse University Summer College
Focus: Acting & Musical Theatre.
Dates: July

Appalachian State University Cannon Music Camp
Focus: 3-week music retreat offering musical instruction with intensive college preparatory work in performance and music theory.
Dates: June 23-July 14

East Carolina University
Focus: Summer Band Camp (full concert band, small ensemble, solo, jazz performance techniques).
Dates: June 17-22

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

Oklahoma City University Summer Music Programs
Focus: Musical Theater (2, 3 or 5 week sessions); Vocal Arts Institute; Percussion; Double Reed Intensive.
Dates: Vary by program, June-July

Carnegie Mellon University Summer Pre-College Music
Focus: Lessons, coaching, audition prep. Immersion in a conservatory environment similar to freshman year. Instrumental, vocal, composition. See link for instruments.
Dates: June 30-Aug. 11

Penn State – The Honors Music Institute
Focus: Choir, band, jazz combo.
Dates: July 15-21

Southeast Piano Festival
Focus: Rigorous piano program; lessons, master classes, piano competition.
Dates: June 17-24

Belmont University School of Music
Focus: String Crossings Camp (multiple styles including Classical, Swing, Celtic, Rock, Jazz, Bluegrass); Summer Winds Band Camp (woodwinds, brass, percussion in Classical & Jazz); Vocal Arts (solo and choral with ensemble options); Piano Camp (Classical or Jazz plus music theory, sight-reading, improvisation).
Dates: Vary by program, all in June.

Memphis Music Camp
Focus: Choir, band and orchestra.
Dates: Choir: June 11-16; Band & Orchestra: June 18-23

Round Top Festival Institute
Focus: Strings, woodwinds, brass, piano, percussion.
Dates: June 3–July 15

TCU Summer Music Institute
Focus: Band Camp; Choir Camp; Percussion Camp. Workshops in: flute; saxophone; harp; clarinet; trombone; strings.
Dates: Vary by program, all in June.

University of Houston Moores School of Music
Focus: Cougar Choir Camp; Band Camp; Texas Music Festival Instructional Institutes (voice, flute, piano, jazz). Dates: Vary by program, July-Aug.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

2018 Programs will be added as they become available.

University of Puget Sound Brass Camp
Focus: Small groups and large ensembles, master classes, final performance.
Dates:  June 25-29

Lawrence University
Focus: Musical Theatre; Piano Camp; Summer Chamber Music; Band Camp.
Dates: Vary by program, June-July


How to Choose the Right Summer Music Program

Start by answering the following 6 questions:

1. What do you want to gain from a summer music program?
For example:

  • Private lessons with a specific teacher
  • Learning to practice more efficiently and effectively
  • Opportunities to play in ensembles, orchestras, bands
  • Opportunities to perform in musical theatre
  • Opportunities to learn more about composing
  • Opportunities to jam with other students, faculty
  • Opportunities to learn about music production
  • Music theory preparation
  • Sight-reading proficiency
  • Aural skills
  • Audition preparation and support
  • Help in reducing performance anxiety
  • Master classes

2. What besides music would you like to explore or participate in?

3. What kind of environment do you want to be in?

  • A well-rounded camp experience vs. a focused music experience?
  • In what area of the country – or world?
  • Do you want a cultural experience in conjunction with a summer music program? Or do you need or want to be a commuter?
  • Do you want to learn more about a specific college or conservatory while studying music?

4. What’s your current proficiency level? Are you able and willing to audition to be accepted?

5. Length of program

  • How long of a program are you able and willing to commit to? And during what part of the summer?

6. Finances

  • Any financial restrictions?
  • Will you find the time to apply for scholarships and other financial aid if needed? (Note that financial support often requires applying early.)

 

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Types of Summer Music Programs and Their Benefits

Some of these overlap but this should help steer you toward a summer music experience that will meet your needs.

1. Performing arts camps

  • Get lessons, practice, and performance opportunities in a well-rounded summer experience.
  • Meet other musicians who also seek a broader summer experience.
  • Experience traditional camp activities: water and land sports, hiking, social events, overnight excursions, crafts, etc.

2. Programs on college campuses

  • Experience the campus, faculty, and dorms at a school where you might apply.
  • Take lessons from faculty you may end up studying with.
  • Feel out the location – how do you like the area? Would it work to be there for four years?
  • Gain college-planning and audition skills.

3. Instrument and genre-focused programs

  • Immerse yourself in your area of musical focus and passion.
  • Meet lifelong friends and mentors in your field.

4. Programs associated with music festivals

  • Meet faculty who perform all over the world as well as a select group of students with shared interests.
  • If housed on a college campus, see #2 above.

5. International summer music programs

  • Immerse yourself in another culture to broaden your musical interests.
  • Experience how a different culture informs your compositions and arrangements.
  • Meet mentors and fellow students from around the world.

 


Summer Camp and Program Jobs

Contact these programs to learn more about summer jobs. New opportunities will be added throughout the winter and into the spring.

 

 

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summer music campsPhoto Courtesy of Performing Arts Abroad


Photo Credits: All photos by Robert King Photography (unless otherwise noted) for LYNX National Arts & Media Camps – University of Colorado Denver


Comments

  1. Brooke

    This is perfect for me because I LOVE music with a passion but, I need to work on writing my own songs. I love all these opportunities.

  2. Dana

    I play Tuba and I really want to be in a summer program where I’ll be able to play a lot better and learn more about music. Currently a sophomore in college majoring in music ed and I feel like I should learn new things outside of home so I can come back with a motivated mind set.

  3. Kobe

    I am 19 and am a freshman. I’ve played guitar for 8 years, drums for 4, but have only studied with a teacher for the last three months. How much skill is required to enter most summer music programs for drums? I’ve played rock up until I switched to jazz for the last couple months. Since I’ve started studying with a teacher I’ve been practicing on average 2 – 2.5 hours everyday. Any recommended programs?

    • Definitely worth checking with the programs you’re interested in. Explore the many options on our list of summer programs, both close to home and in other states. Make a list of those that seem to be a good fit and compare. You eventually may have to call individual programs to fully understand what they can do for you. Many offer different levels of instruction to accommodate students of varying proficiency, with the goal of helping them rise to the next level. Your commitment to practicing will help you establish a solid foundation.

    • MajoringInMusic

      We don’t know of any country music-specific programs but we suggest you check out songwriting and summer guitar programs – the skills learned will likely serve your student even if the program doesn’t focus specifically on country music.

  4. Travis

    Hello, my son will be 17 summer of 2015. He has had private lessons for about 8 years on drum set and has been playing in the schools jazz band for the last 5 years. He is looking at Berklees 5 week summer program. What are your opinions on Berklees program. He has done CWU jazz camp the last 2 summers and is really wanting an intense program going into his senior year as he will start auditioning for college. He is going to major in music performance or jazz.

    Thanks,
    Travis

    • Rather than rank or evaluate programs, MajoringInMusic.com provides a wealth of information to empower students and parents to make smart choices and decisions based on their personal criteria. This is far more likely to result in a good fit. Look at the criteria listed on this section to get started. Our 2015 page, which will post beginning December 15, will include more detailed information. Also take a look at some of the articles under “Choosing Music Schools” – some of the same criteria apply for summer programs.

    • Bruce

      My son has done the Berklee 5 week last summer as a Drum Performance major. It was overall a positive experience (he was an incoming 9th grader). He was put into two ensembles, one was not so challenging and less than stimulating, the other was with more experienced players and he found that one challenging and lots of fun. My biggest criticism was that each ensemble rehersed only twice per week. The rest of the time he was in elective classes, all important stuff (jazz history, music theory, musicianship training), but what he really wanted to do was rack up hours of ensemble experience with players that were at or above his level. He got to do this twice per week, 9 times total during the 5 weeks. That said, the experience of living in a dorm, having to advocate for himself, practice, play, etc, was amazing.

  5. Sarah

    I’m 19 and play piano organ and piano, but both at beginner level, in comparison to the best pianists/organists. I am DYING to study both INTENSELY over the summer. I also sing a lot and have very good choral technique but don’t have vibrato – I would also love to study voice intensely over the summer.

    Are there any programs that would take beginners pianists/vocalists?

    • Every program is different – some offer beginner lessons, while others are geared toward those much higher levels of expertise. We’ll be posting the 2015 programs beginning late December, with new programs added through the spring, so check back often. Also look at programs offered by community music schools in your area – most offer programs for children and adults at all levels.

  6. Wendy

    My daughter plays French horn and trumpet. We are interested in a summer music camp/ program in the southern California area.

    • This page of Summer Camps & Programs is updated starting every December, but you can get a head start by visiting any of the links/programs on the right side of this page. New programs will be added through early spring 2015! For now, look under the California listings in the right column.

  7. Mary

    Hi! I’m interested in doing summer program in piano but I don’t actually have any idea about the procedure and which courses to choose since I’ve just recently starting to play. My intentions are doing a course in a good university/college in Manhattan or maybe Chicago or Boston. Can you pls suggest any also keeping in mind that I’m 15. Thanks!

    • You’ll have lots of options. Summer programs offered on college campuses are a great way to get a taste of what a college environment is like and to familiarize yourself with a particular college setting. Pick a few programs in the list provided on this page from colleges that interest you. Get in touch with them a ask questions to start the ball rolling. And look for our 2015 page to be posted sometime in December. We suggest you consider a program that will also give you theory training, and opportunities to perform at whatever level you’re at.

  8. Mary

    My daughter plays piano, drums and sings. She is just starting guitar. We are looking for an opportunity for next summer with a rock/pop emphasis. Camps are okay, but college based would be better. Suggestions. International options would be great too. She will be 15 next summer.

    • We assume you’ve already looked at the programs offered for this past summer – many of these will be offered again next summer. We’ll post next summer’s Music Camps & Programs page in late December. Programs will be added throughout winter and early spring, so be sure to visit often.

  9. Steve

    My daughter is interested in taking a term or year “away” from her high school. Do you know of schools offering music-voice-theater programs serving HS juniors? Thank you.

    • Steve,

      Our first thought is to look with your daughter at the boarding arts high schools that offer programs in which she’s looking to immerse herself. They’re known for doing an excellent job of preparing students for their next steps. And she wouldn’t have to lose a year of high school since she’d be taking her academic classes there as well. Two of those schools are participating on MajoringInMusic.com so you can easily view what they offer: Interlochen Arts Academy and Walnut Hill School for the Arts. Please let them know we referred you if you do follow up. They’ll be happy to talk with you. Other options are non-residential after school programs, non-residential arts high schools, and, of course, summer programs.

  10. Theresa

    Love the list of possibilities! However I noticed Georgia is missing from the state listings, so I thought I would share that the University of Georgia provided a fabulous band camp experience for my daughter, an experiemced trumpet player this past summer. She will be returning next year.

    • Thanks for your input, Theresa! Glad to hear your daughter had such a positive experience. We’ll talk with UGA about getting their program up on our summer page for 2015.

  11. Lisa Buck

    My son is a high school junior and interested in studying music composition in college. He would like to attend a summer program specifically for music composition that will give him the opportunity to start composing and recording his own pieces.

    Do you have recommendations on any programs?

    • Programs we work with that offer composing in the summer include: Lamont School of Music Summer Academy, Long Lake Camp, Rocky Ridge Music Center, Interlochen, The Walden School Young Musicians Program, Ithaca College Summer Music Academy, U of North Carolina School of the Arts Summer Music Programs, Cornish College of the Arts. If your son is interested in popular music and songwriting, have him check Leeds College of Music, Interlochen, U of Colorado Denver Summer Music Industry Program.

  12. Tina

    My son would like to go to a residential music camp this summer. Where can I find comments or reviews by participants so that we can help him select tht one that best fits him and guide him as to what to expect?

    • We suggest you start by looking at the various camps and programs on this page to see what interests your son. Some of their websites do have testimonials from former campers and families. You and your son can also contact any of the programs that interest him, and ask them any and all questions that aren’t already answered on their websites. Also get some names and contact information for recent attendees. Then contact the parents and see if their kids would be willing to have a conversation with your son.

      Remember that no two people will have the exact same reaction to a program, but you can glean good information by asking the kinds of questions that will help you both in the decision-making process.

  13. lorraine

    I have a 16 year-old Saxophonist. Do you have any classes in Phoenix. She’s in marching band for 3 yrs, jazz for 2 and elementary band for 4 yrs. She reads music and would like to learn more about jazz. Thank you

    • Some suggestions as to where to look for summer jazz programs in your area:

      1. Jazz in Arizona/The Nash (www.thenash.org) – look for their summer jazz programs by mid-April.
      2. Community colleges in the area (Paradise Valley, Maricopa, Scottsdale).
      3. Community music schools in Phoenix, such as Phoenix Center for the Arts.

      Also check the state-by-state list of programs on this page to also learn about excellent jazz programs outside your area.

  14. Pam

    My 16 year old son would like a camp where he will get vocal and songwriting instruction. He is also interested in recording. Mostly this summer he wants to go someplace where he can grow his skills. He made the ACDA honor’s choir at the State level this year and he writes music/songs on a regular basis but he wants to be better at both. He taught himself guitar and he took piano lessons for years and does mostly improv and piano to supplement his singing now. We live in California but aren’t opposed to traveling. Any ideas?

    • Programs we’re working with this year that offer what your son is looking for include: Idyllwild Arts (CA), Interlochen (MI), Stanford Jazz Workshop Jazz Institute (Songwriting, CA), University of the Pacific (Pacific Music Business Camp. CA), University of Colorado Summer Music Industry Program (Songwriting, CO), Cornish College of the Arts (WA).

      Check them out on this Summer Music Camps & Programs page!

  15. Mellisa

    My son wants to go to a music program in Italy this summer but doesn’t know any one else who wants to go with him. Can you help me think this out? Would he be better off waiting until he can maybe go with a group of students from his school?

    • Summer music programs in other countries offer wonderful opportunities for students who are ready for them. There are some advantages to not going with a school group and your son will certainly meet people wherever he goes. Find out everything you can about supervision, lodging, language support, private instruction, cultural opportunities, etc. Ask for contact information for a few families whose children have attended the programs your son is interested in so you can get some more objective feedback about those programs.

  16. I am looking for a summer music program for my middle schooler who plays saxophone. He will be going into the 8th grade next year. I would like to find a place that is in the Southeast that also offers Graduate for musicians. I have my bachelor’s for the University of Memphis. I would like to get started on my Grad degree on saxophone. May not be possible to pull this off, but I thought I would ask. Memphis does not offer a summer program.

    • Stay tuned for the 2014 Summer Music Camps & Programs information! Posting of programs will start mid-December and will be accessed from the homepage.

      And…how far are you willing/able to travel?

      Note that if you’re interested in blues, check out Fernando Jones’ Blues Camp for your son. He’ll bring a blues camp your way if you can facilitate the process.

  17. Andy

    I know summer is almost over but maybe for next year… Summer camps other than the ones listed for a High School Student in Los Angeles? Thank you!

    • Thanks, Andy, for your comment. If you’ll give us an idea of what type of music and what kind of programs would interest you, we’ll do our best to scout them out for next season.

  18. Nick

    Hi! I was wondering what information you had on summer programs in Pennsylvania or relatively close to it. Thanks!

    • Nick,

      In the state-by-state listing over on the right of this page, you’ll see excellent music programs with different focuses, in Pennsylvania (at Temple and Penn State) and surrounding states (Ohio, New York). You’ll notice that several programs are offered through the music schools and departments at universities.

  19. Ingrid

    I am interested in summer programs in music for high school students in New York City. Any information you have would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance for your time.

    • Ingrid,

      We’re honored to be working with excellent programs in New York. You don’t state what area of music you’re looking for, but check these out:

      • The New York Jazz Academy (Manhattan) is a place for jazz – all instruments, all level. Queens College’s Aaron Copland School of Music has a great Summer Vocal Institute.

      Other NY programs outside the city but worth looking at:

      • Eastern U.S. Music Camp at Colgate University
      (wind & chamber ensembles, jazz, voice, orchestra, piano, guitar (jazz, rock, classical)

      • Fredonia Summer Music Festival (SUNY Fredonia – Fredonia, NY)
      (winds, brass & percussion high school students

      • French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts (Catskills)
      jazz (all instruments, voice), Classical (all instruments, voice)

      • Ithaca College Summer Music Academy (Ithaca, NY)
      (wind ensemble, orchestra, voice, jazz, classical guitar)

      • Long Lake Camp for the Arts (Adirondacks)
      (all instruments, all styles + rock)

      • Skidmore Jazz Institute (Saratoga Springs)
      (jazz performance, recording)

      • Syracuse Summer Programs (Syracuse, NY)
      (recording studio tech., musical theatre, girls leadership academy)

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