Summer music programs help improve your proficiency, deepen your understanding of music theory, prepare for auditions, and much more.
New programs added through Spring 2021. Program formats will be updated to reflect any pandemic-related safety changes. Many programs already plan to be offered virtually so you can access them from any location – check the 2021 Geographical Listings by State + International to learn more.
To learn more about the benefits of online summer music programs, read this article: Virtual Summer Music Programs – Again for 2021?
Featured Programs – Summer 2021
Find and click to learn more:
2. How to Choose a Summer Music Program – for students and parents
3. Summer Jobs Section – for college students
2021 Geographical Listings by State + International
Additional programs will be added regularly through Spring 2021. If programs change due to the pandemic, those changes will be reflected here.
Berklee College of Music – Spain Summer Performance Program
Focus: Music performance instruction, music theory, production, technology.
Dates: July 12-30, 2021
Domaine Forget de Charlevoix International Music and Dance Academy (Quebec)
Focus: Advanced programs in brass, chamber music, dance, new music, guitar, orchestra, strings, woodwinds, voice, conducting. Onsite and online. Video audition required – advanced level.
Dates: May 31 to August 22, 2021
Leeds Conservatoire Summer Academy
Focus: Online programs in Musical Theatre; Performance (classical, jazz, folk, popular music); and Music Production.
Dates: August 2-6, 2021
Vancouver Symphony Orchestral Institute
Focus: Flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, saxophone, trumpet, french horn, trombone, tuba, euphonium, percussion, harp, violin, viola, cello, bass, composing, conducting. (2+ years playing experience)
Dates: July 5-16, 2021
Virtuoso & Belcanto Festival (Lucca, Italy)
Focus: Piano, violin, cello, chamber music – for college students and young professionals.
Dates: July 19 to August 1, 2021
Coast Music Summer Programs
Focus: Jazz, classical, popular music, songwriting, and music production. An audition is required for jazz intensive program.
Dates: June 21-August 20
Idyllwild Arts Summer Teen Programs
Focus: Chamber, jazz, songwriting. In-person with safety precautions in place.
Dates: July 3-24
Summer at LACM
Focus: Bass, guitar, drum, piano, vocal or jazz performance, rap & hip-hop, songwriting, music production, composing for visual media or music entrepreneurship. Beginner, and ages 12+
Dates: Week 1: June 21-25; Week 2: June 28-July 2; Week 3: July 5-9
Pacific Music Camp
Focus: Senior brass, woodwinds, strings, vocal, and percussion session. Offered virtually. Students grades 8-12 with minimum 2 years experience.
Dates: July 12-15
SFCM (San Francisco Conservatory of Music)
Focus: Online programs for ages 10-18: Coding for Composers; Intro to Composition; Gilbert & Sullivan Scenes; Harp Camp; Improvisation; Piano Seminar: the Well-Tempered Clavier; Strategies for Success.
Dates: Vary by program, June & July
CCJA – CO Conservatory for the Jazz Arts
Focus: Jazz Boot Camp (Technique & Improvisation Intensive, ages 10-18); CCJA Summer Institute (various classes & ensembles, all ages); Jazz in the Sangres Camp (overnight camp in Westcliffe, CO for high schoolers, by audition only).
Dates: Vary by program, June-July
University of Colorado High School Summer Music Academy for Piano
Focus: Online, private lessons, performance and master classes, sight-reading, practicing and technique. Includes online electives and opportunities to connect with other participants.
Dates: June 14-18
CU Denver: LYNX Camp Ableton Live/Audio Production Program
Focus: Online program for Audio Production, Ableton Live
Dates: June 7-11
CU Denver: LYNX Camp Music Industry Program
Focus: Music Industry: songwriting, performance, music business, recording arts. Offered as hybrid option – in person or virtual.
Dates: June 13-25
Lamont Summer Academy
Focus: Performers and composers study privately, and participate in chamber music, master classes, wind ensemble, orchestra, and modern music groups. Additionally, students can take classes in theory and musicianship, conducting, music technology, music entrepreneurship and musician wellness.
Dates: June 20-July 3
Rafael Méndez Brass Institute
Focus: Brass – trumpet, tenor/bass trombone, french horn, tuba, euphonium; orchestra/military band musicians, audition prep, career seminars, master classes. Recommended for HS seniors on up; no audition required.
Dates: July 11-16
Rocky Ridge Summer Programs
Focus: Students receive private lessons, chamber ensemble, coaching, master classes, score study, mock auditions, professional development, professional mentorship program, and more.
Dates: Varies by program, June through August
Hartt School Community Division
Focus: American Saxophone Academy; Young Composers Project; Music Industry (song writing, mixing, mastering); Meet the Masters Jazz Program (instrumentalists & vocalists); Musical Theatre.
Dates: Vary by program, July-August
Florida State University
Focus: Band camp; various choir camps; double bass; guitar camp; honors chamber wind ensemble; jazz ensemble; marching leadership; piano camp or institute; string orchestra; tuba and euphonium.
Dates: Vary by program, mid-June – July
Frost Young Musicians’ Camp
Focus: Virtual summer programs in music production, voice, jazz, rock, classical music. Intermediate to advanced entering grades 9-12.
Dates: July 5- July 16
Frost Contemporary Songwriting Camp
Focus: Virtual summer program in contemporary songwriting, songwriting. Studio level – little or no experience; advanced level – by audition.
Dates: July 5- July 16
Chicago College of Performing Arts Summer Programs
Focus: Virtual summer programs: Acoustic music composition; Chicago Saxophone Institute; American Music Institute; Chicago International Music Institute (strings and piano).
Dates: Vary by program, June-July
DePaul University Summer Music
Focus: Summer Residency for New Music (for composers); Instrument Intensives; Voice; Music Education..
Dates: Vary by program, July-August
Wheaton College Summer Music Camp
Focus: Private lessons, master classes, theory, Alexander Technique, chamber ensemble, Bible study, chapel services. For vocal, string chamber, piano, woodwind chamber, brass chamber, and percussion.
Dates: June 20-27
Butler University Summer Camps
Focus: Pre-College Camps: Upright Bass; Percussion; Piano Scholars ; String Scholars; Woodwinds. Over 18: Jazz
Dates: Vary by program, June and July
DePauw University-Vocal Arts at DePauw 2021
Focus: Virtual program with a focus on voice, opera, musical theatre and theatre. For high school students with some singing experience.
Dates: July 11-17
Indiana University Jacobs School of Music
Focus: Piano; saxophone; guitar; strings; percussion; composition.
Dates: Vary by program, TBD
Lutheran Summer Music (LSM) at Valparaiso University
Focus: Large ensembles for band, choir or orchestra; private lessons; chamber music; musicianship; electives; performance opportunities. In-person and remote options.
Dates: June 27-July 25 or June 27-July 11 (half session, in-person only)
Berklee College of Music – Summer Programs
Focus: On-campus and online programs available in areas such as music performance, music business, songwriting, production, and film scoring. The most popular and comprehensive program, Aspire: Five-Week Music Performance intensive, will be offered in person.
Dates: Vary by program, June-August
Boston Conservatory at Berklee
Focus: Voice, opera, composition, Alexander Technique, dance, theatre.
Dates: Vary by program
Boston University Tanglewood Institute
Focus: 20 online summer programs for instrumentalists, singers and composers ages 14-20.Orchestral Instruments, Voice, Piano, Composition, Harp, Wind Instruments, Workshops, Young Artists.
Dates: Vary by program; June 20 – July 31
Interlochen Arts Camp
Focus: In-person multi-week programs for Piano, Organ, Advanced Piano, Harp, Advanced Strings, Advanced String Quartet, Orchestra & Wind Ensemble, Jazz Performance & Improvisation, Rock/Pop Performance, Singer-Songwriter, Voice, Music Composition, and Music Production & Engineering. One-week string, woodwind, brass and percussion, piano, and classical voice intensives.
Dates: Vary by program, between June 19 – August 8
Focus: Three-week sessions, private lessons, real-time engagement. For classical performance, jazz, composition, production & engineering, singer-songwriter, and music exploration.
Dates: Mon.-Thurs; June 28- July 15 and July 19-August 5
University of Michigan MPulse Summer Institutes
Focus: Center Stage Strings; Clarinet; Dance; Flute; Girls in Music & Technology; Harp; Jazz; Musical Theatre; Percussion; Saxophone; Theatre & Drama; Vocal Arts.
Dates: Vary by program; June-July. Check back to see if in-person or virtual.
Wayne State University Summer Music Intensives
Focus: Register for free virtual high school summer programs: The Songwriters Initiative (ages 16+); Music Technology (ages 15+); Bootcamp for Singers; Essential Elements of Jazz (all ages); Music Composition Week (grades 9-12).
Dates: Vary by program, July-August
North Shore Summer Music Experience
Focus: Band, Choral, String and Piano camps for grades 7-12. Include ensembles and opportunities for private lessons. This is a commuter program at University of Minnesota Duluth.
Dates: June 21-25
The Walden School Young Musicians Program
Focus: Part school, part camp, part festival for musically-inclined students ages 9-18. Instruction in composition, improvisation, choral singing, musicianship, theory, contemporary and popular music, and electronic music. Application required, with optional portfolio component.
Dates: 5 week program: June 26-August 1; 3 week program (for students who have completed 7th grade and younger): June 26-July 18
The Walden School Creative Musicians Retreat
Focus: A week-long festival in New England for composers, improvisers, performers, electronic musicians, choral musicians, and music teachers. Application required, with optional portfolio component.
Dates: June 12-June 20
Bard Precollege Summer Music Academy
Focus: Week-long intensive online program for violinists and pianists ages 11-18. Daily lessons, technique classes, and masterclasses.
Dates: July 12-17
Eastman School of Music – Summer@Eastman
Focus: Offered Online: Classical, Jazz, Cello, French Horn, Organ, Percussion, Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Voice. Intermediate/advanced.
Dates: Vary by program, June 28-August 6
French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts
Focus: Vocal and instrumental music (all orchestral instruments + piano), various genres. Additional opportunities include audition preparation, theatre, dance, magic, fitness, culinary arts.
Dates: June 10-19; June 29-July 19; July 19-Aug. 8; Aug. 8-29.
Ithaca College Summer Music Academy (SMA)
Focus: Programs for orchestra; vocal; wind ensemble (band); jazz. Large ensembles, chamber ensembles, masterclasses, and an array of music and non-music courses designed to prepare students to enter college. For intermediate and advanced music students entering grades 10-11-12. Offered in-person for participants within a 10-hour drive, or virtually.
Dates: July 11-24
Long Lake Summer Music Camp
Focus: All instruments including voice; all genres; song writing; composing; plus traditional camp activities.
Dates: Vary by 3-week or 6-week programs
Manhattan School of Music
Focus: Online classes in: Arranging & Jazz Composition; Audition Techniques for Classical Singers; Audition Techniques for Musical Theatre; Composition; Pop Music Production; Classical Music History; Ear Training; Female Composers; Film Scoring; Guitar; History of Musical Theatre; History of Opera; Improvisation; Jazz (History; Standards; Theory; Transcription) Piano; Pop Music Production; R&B; Songwriting; Studio classes for Brass, Classical Percussion, Guitar, Jazz Vocalists, Musical Theatre Singers, Percussion, Piano, Strings, Woodwinds; Private lessons; Ukulele; Video Game Sound Design; World Music.
Dates: July 12-August 13
UNCSA Music Summer Intensives
Focus: All programs offered virtually. Composition/music technology; double bass; guitar; harp; horn; organ; piano; voice. Composition/technology and voice will also be offered as in-person programs for day students.
Dates: Vary by program; June-July
CCM College-Conservatory of Music
Focus: Arts Immersion Program: Emerging Composers Workshop; Online Musical Theatre Workshop; Band – Making of a Music Major (audition prep); Jazz Academy.
Dates: Vary by program; June-August
Oberlin Summer Programs
Focus: Programs offered virtually – Baroque Performance Institute; Advanced Flute Intensives for high school; Voice Intensive; Organ Workshops; Sonic Arts : Electronic Composition & Production Workshops.
Dates: Vary by program; June-July
Otterbein Summer Music Experience
Focus: Winds, brass, percussion, strings, piano, voice, guitar, composition. Rising 9th graders-12th; audition required.
Dates: June 14-18
Schmidt Vocal Institute at Miami University
Focus: Serious high school singers: lessons, coaching, master classes, audition prep, lyric diction, vocal health. World-renowned faculty and performers.
Dates: June 21-July 4
Carnegie Mellon University Online Music Programs
Focus: 3- and 6-week online programs provide private 1-hr weekly studio lessons, music theory, Solfege, music history, résumé & portfolio workshop, college audition support.
Dates: June 26-July 24 or June 26-August 14
Duquesne University Mary Pappert School of Music
Focus: High School Vocal Intensive – with members of the Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh: 2 voice lessons, daily coaching, ensemble rehearsals, master classes; in-person OR online.
Dates: July 26-30
Kutztown University Summer Chamber Music Festival
Focus: For high school and college musicians. In-person intensive and comprehensive approach to learning the core chamber music repertoire for strings, piano, percussion and winds. With faculty from The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, University of Pennsylvania, Kutztown University, the New York City Ballet Orchestra, and other prestigious institutions.
Dates: July 11-17
Penn State Honors Music Institute
Focus: Immersion into music making with focus on Chamber Choir; Jazz Combo; Wind Ensemble; Music Technology; Composition; or Piano.
Dates: July 3-10
Philadelphia International Music Festival
Focus: In-person and virtual sessions available for all instruments. Five program options: symphony, solo performance preparation, chamber music intensive, college audition preparation, and piano studies. Auditions are required for all programs.
Dates: June 19-July 2; July 17-30. One week sessions available.
University of the Arts
Focus: Online 2-week program: Instrumentalists and vocalists – Technique, audition preparation, masterclasses, music technology and home recording, notation software.
Dates: July 26-August 6
West Chester University Summer Music Camps
Focus: WCU High School Summer Music Institute – large and small ensembles for strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion, double reed and chorus; Summer Jazz Camp.
Dates: Vary by program; July
Carolina Summer Music Conservatory
Focus: Woodwind, brass, percussion, jazz, voice, piano and strings for advanced high school students. Both day and boarding students.
Dates: June 20-26
Savvy Arts Venture Challenge
Focus: Annual workshop for performers and other artists to learn entrepreneurship and other skills for careers in music and other areas of the arts.
Dates: June 6-12
Southeast Piano Festival (SEPF)
Focus: Festival of rigorous piano lessons and master classes.
Dates: June 12-20
Decoda Chamber Music Festival at Lawrence University
Focus: 8th Annual summer intensive for advanced string, woodwind, brass and piano. Daily rehearsals, coachings, lessons, master classes, and workshops relating to life as a musician. In-person unless safety precautions require it to be virtual.
Dates: July 25-August 6
Shell Lake Arts Center Camps & Workshops
Focus: Jazz, Rock, Concert Bands; Music Production; Bass; Guitar; Piano; Saxophone; Trombone.
Dates: Vary by program, June 13-August 6
2021: How to Find the Best Summer Music Program
First, answer these 6 questions. This will help you create your criteria for determining which summer music programs will meet your needs.
Then read “Advantages of Different Types of Programs” (below).
Now you’re ready to look at all of these programs and see which ones match your criteria to help you choose the best music program for you.
1. What do you need from a summer music program?
Which of these are true for you?
- Take private lessons with a specific teacher
- Learn to practice more efficiently and effectively
- Find opportunities to perform with others
- Learnt compose
- Meet music mentors
- Learn music production
- Learn music theory
- Increase your sight-reading proficiency
- Enhance your songwriting proficiency
- Learn aural skills
- Prepare for auditions
- Deal with performance anxiety
- Take master classes
2. What in addition to music would you like to explore or participate in?
3. What kind of environment do you want to be in?
- Competitive vs. relaxed
- Where in the U.S./where outside the U.S.
- In-person (if possible) vs. commuter (if possible) vs. virtual
- Able to learn more about a specific college-level music school while studying music
4. What’s your current proficiency level? Are you willing to audition to be accepted?
5. Length of program
- How long of a program are you able and willing to commit to?
- What dates are you available?
- Any financial constraints?
- Will you apply for scholarships and other financial aid if needed? (Note that financial support often requires applying early.)
7. Other considerations or limitations that will affect your decision?
Advantages of Different Types of Programs
1. Performing arts camps
- Get lessons, practice, and performance opportunities in a well-rounded summer experience.
- Meet other musicians wanting a strong music program within a full camp experience.
- If possible: participate in 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 more directly at a school where you may want to apply.
- Take lessons from faculty you may end up studying with – and have them get to know you and give feedback about your proficiency before you audition.
- Meet students who may also end up applying to the school.
- If possible: experience 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 possible: stay on a college campus, see #2 above.
5. International summer music programs
- Immerse yourself in another culture.
- Discover how a different culture informs your playing or singing, your compositions and your arrangements.
- Meet mentors and fellow students from around the world.
Summer Camp and Program Jobs
Summer jobs opportunities will be posted throughout the winter and into the spring as they become available.
Long Lake Summer Music Camp (New York)
Rocky Ridge Summer Programs (Colorado)
Boston University Tanglewood Institute (Massachusetts)
Coast Music Summer Programs (California)