Summer Music West (Home)

 

"Summer Music West makes you want to come back

 every year for more!"
  -- Chamber Music student, age 16, piano

Frequently Asked Questions

What level of student is appropriate for SMW?
Are the age ranges strict?
Are there any discounts or scholarships?
What are my chances for acceptance?
How many spaces are there in each program?
How do I arrange an audition?
Do my audition pieces have to be memorized?
When and how do we hear about the audition results?
Is the Conservatory close to public transportation?
Can students arrive early or stay late during camp?


What level of student is appropriate for SMW?
Generally speaking, students with three or more years of concentrated music study will be appropriate for Summer Music West programs. However, admission is by audition and can be competitive; frequently not all qualified students are able to be placed. We recommend that you check with your music teacher for advice on the best music camp for your current level. We are also happy to speak with you via phone or email about the audition process and the general levels of repertoire we recommend.


Are the age ranges strict?
The age ranges listed under each program are meant as guidelines. In the case of our ensembles programs, we quite frequently have students 12 and older attending the String & Piano Academy, but not many 12-13 year olds attending the Chamber Music Session. You may always apply for both programs and the audition committee will determine the best placement for you.


Are there any discounts or scholarships?
Partial scholarships are awarded to a limited number of students who show a high level of musical proficiency and demonstrate clear financial need. To be considered for a scholarship, applicants must submit a completed scholarship application along with a letter of recommendation from the applicant's private teacher and page one of your parent's most recent Federal Income Tax return.


What are my chances for acceptance?
Admission to Summer Music West is based on each applicant's abilities as demonstrated in the audition as well as compatibility with other applicants.


How many spaces are there in each program?
Summer Music West generally enrolls the following number of students in each program:

 

Gilbert & Sullivan Scenes: 38
Composition: 15
Musicianship: 10
String & Piano Academy: 35
Piano Duo Academy: 8
Chamber Music: 40

 


How do I arrange an audition?
Visit our online registration site to create an account and enroll in the Audition/Interview course for Summer Music West which requires payment of a $50 non-refundable application fee.  We will then contact you via email or phone to arrange an audition time.


Do my audition pieces have to be memorized?
The answer varies depending on the audition. Applicants to the Gilbert & Sullivan Scenes program should present their selections from memory. All other auditions do not require memorization, though applicants are welcome to perform from memory if they prefer.


When and how do we hear about the audition results?
We make every effort to notify applicants of audition results as soon as possible. Please note that it is necessary to complete all of the auditions for a given program before the committee will announce their decisions. You will be notified by phone or email at the earliest opportunity. We strive to have all notifications made by mid-May.


Is the Conservatory close to public transportation?
The Conservatory's Civic Center location is just blocks from many public transportation options including BART trains and MUNI buses and trains. Click here to view a map with public transit and parking options.


Can students arrive early or stay late during camp?
Summer Music West students will receive a security badge that allows access during any building hours, but will not be directly supervised outside of class times.