Eastman Experience: Summer Classical Studies — a three-week program

Eastman Experience: Summer Classical Studies
The Premier Program for Classical Musicians (formerly Music Horizons) 

July 11- August 1, 2020   (three-week program)
Petar Kodzas, director
Registration open now!

“I feel like I improved more at this program than at any other institute or camp I’ve been too!” -2019 participant

Strings: Wilfredo Deglans, violin; Janet Milnes, violin; Roberta Zalkind, viola; Christopher Haritatos, cello; Gaelen McCormick, bass; Rosanna Moore, harp; Lynn McGrath, guitar
Winds: Sophia Gibbs Kim, flute; Hayley Grainger, flute; Chisato Eda Marling, saxophone; Andrew Brown, clarinet; Geoff Sanford, oboe; Blaire Koerner, bassoon
Piano: Irina Lupines, Alla Kuznetsov, Tamari Gurevich Hill, Matthew Robey
Brass: Jeffrey Gray, trombone; Wesley Nance, trumpet; Maura McCune Corvington, horn, Craig Sutherland, tuba
Voice: Cecile Saine, Teresa Ringholz, Andrea Folan,  Karie Schroer Templeton, chorale
Percussion: Kyle Peters
Music Studies: Rachel Lauber, conducting; Paul Coleman, composition; William Cahn, improvisation; Stephen Armstrong, music analysis; Alice Carli, music history; Glenn West, world music; Stephanie Venturino and Daniel Sawler, music theory. 

This internationally acclaimed Classical Studies program is for academically inquisitive performers, conductors and composers currently in grades 9–12 who are seriously considering a career in music. Our highly individualized program emphasizes solo performance (strings, winds, brass, piano, voice, classical guitar, harp, conducting, and composition) and chamber music, rather than orchestral or large ensemble playing. This program is for mature students of advanced performance levels who can work well in a focused collegiate-type environment.

The program’s main features:

  • Two private lessons per week
  • Weekly solo performance in Repertory Class
  • Career seminar with interviews and great speakers
  • Theory, Ear Training, History classes
  • Small ensembles
  • Orchestral and Vocal techniques
  • Creative Ventures: choice of either composition for non-majors, conducting for non-majors, improvisation, or Alexander Technique.

Final solo performance and chamber music concerts are held in Eastman’s acoustically magnificent Kilbourn Hall and Hatch Recital Hall. All performances are recorded and livestreamed, and each student will have online access to recordings.

Photo credit: David Taylor

Daily schedule: click HERE for a detailed weekly program schedule in calendar format. Please note that the schedule is the basic schedule for all and does not reflect individual differences. Music Studies (such as theory and aural skills) and Elective classes will be assigned based on placements or student preferences; the students will schedule private lessons with the instructors; and every participant will perform in one chamber performance on the final Thursday and one solo performance on the final Friday of the program.

HERE is full program information as well as answers to frequently asked questions.

Maximum Acceptance Limits:

We will accept up to these numbers in each category/major.
Other Solo Instruments (Strings, Winds (including saxophone), Brass, Percussion): Acceptance will mimic the instrumentation of a symphonic orchestra
Classical Guitar: 4
Piano: 10 
Voice: 12 
Composers: 6
Conductors: 4

Application Fee and Deadlines:

  • Application fee waived for current ECMS students
  • $50 nonrefundable if application is completed by February 15
  • $100 nonrefundable if application is completed after February 15, up until April 15
  • Incomplete applications and those submitted after April 15  will not be reviewed extended until April 30th!
  • Upon acceptance, students will be invoiced for a nonrefundable $300 deposit to secure their place
  • Tuition and housing payment (if applicable) due by May 15
  • Cancellations less than two weeks prior to arrival will not receive a refund except for a documented emergency

$2121  Tuition only  
$1764  Housing & Meals only
$3885 Total tuition, housing and meals
Partial merit-based scholarships available (see application)

10% tuition discount for ECMS students enrolled both semesters, 25% discount for children of qualifying University of Rochester employees. Partial scholarships may be requested on the application form. Employee discount must be applied for through employee’s HRMS page.

Audition video requirements (approximately 10 minutes of music):
Instrumentalists: Several contrasting pieces, such as etudes, sonata/concerto movement, or solo compositions representing different eras.

  • Percussionists: At least one of each from the following three categories:
    Snare Drum: 1-2 minute excerpt of a Rudimental Solo (Pratt, Wilcoxin, etc.) and an Orchestral Solo (Peters, Cirone, etc.).
    Timpani: Solo or Etude (Hochrainer, Firth, etc.).
    Mallets: 3-4 minute excerpt from a solo mallet work using four mallets; 1-2 minute excerpt from a solo mallet work using two mallets.

Composers: One or two works with scores and recordings, if available. Live recording or midi file acceptable.

Singers: Several songs contrasting in era, style, tempo, and language. Examples might be selections from 24 Italian Songs or equivalent; American, British, German, or French art songs; Folk songs and Spirituals; level-appropriate arias or oratorio solos.

Conductors: A recent video recording of the student conducting (vocal or instrumental).


  • Each year Classical Studies includes many international students. International students need to be completely conversant in English to take full advantage of the program. International students are approved by the University to enter the US as a visitor, so we advise securing a visitor’s visa for the duration of the program.
  • Applications and audition recordings will be reviewed very shortly after their receipt, and most students will know their status within two weeks. Current ECMS students may apply without submitting a recording but do need to have their ECMS teacher send a recommendation.

Photo credits: David Taylor

Arrive: Saturday afternoon, July 11, 12-5 p.m. for Student Living Center residents (commuters arrive Sunday at 9 a.m.)
Orientation: Sunday, July 12 at 9 a.m. in Kilbourn Hall
Depart: Saturday morning, August 1 for residents, or Friday evening July 31 for commuters
To read the Residential Student Handbook that all residential students receive and sign, please click here.


All concerts are livestreamed, video recorded, and audio recorded.
Video and audio files will be available for download several weeks after the end of the program.
Solo and Chamber concert times will be assigned to each student during the program.

Chamber Ensembles: Thursday, July 30 at 2 and 7 p.m. in Kilbourn Hall
For livestreaming, please click this link, www.esm.rochester.edu/live/kilbourn.
There is no password and streaming starts 15 minutes prior to the concert’s start.

Vocal Ensemble: Friday, July 31 at 10 a.m. in Kilbourn Hall
For livestreaming, please click this link, www.esm.rochester.edu/live/kilbourn.
There is no password and streaming starts 15 minutes prior to the concert’s start.

Solo: Friday, July 31 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Hatch Recital Hall
For livestreaming, please click this link, https://www.esm.rochester.edu/live/hatch.
There is no password and streaming starts 15 minutes prior to the concert’s start.

Click HERE to apply now

Please be sure to add the following e-mail addresses to your address book so they are not filtered out as spam and so you don’t miss any important communications: pkodzas@esm.rochester.edu and sgreathouse@esm.rochester.edu .


In the News!

Read our blog: A View into the Eastman Experience

Read our blog: From Summer Study to a Dream Realized: Reflections on Music Horizons 2015

Read an interview with Music Horizons Director and ECMS Associate Dean Petar Kodzas on our blog.

Read a helpful article by Music Horizons saxophone instructor Chisato Eda Marling on a musician’s wellness, and another on performance anxiety.