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Requirements by Studio


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Requirements by Studio


 
I came here to get better at the violin. I went home not only a better musician, but a better human being as well. Thank you so much for two of the best months of my life.

Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade with James Gaffigan

The Summer School & Festival has five advanced training programs

  • Vocal Piano
  • Voice
  • Collaborative Piano
  • Solo Piano
  • Strings, Wind, Brass, Harp & Percussion

Each offers a wealth of opportunities for individual instruction, collaborative music-making, public performance, and personal growth.

Learn more about the details and highlights of each program below.

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Voice


Voice


2018 Voice & Vocal Piano Faculty / teaching artists

23 Voice Program fellow openings per year

Training

One of the first intensive and comprehensive acting training programs of its kind.

Singers will be immersed in the process of "conscious acting" through group-oriented classes, ongoing mentorship, and on-stage experience in opera, concert, and recital performances. Studio director James Darrah and guest instructors will coach singers in the dramatic preparation and presentation of audition repertoire and stagecraft while honing their artistry.

Intensive coaching in singing technique, diction, interpretation, style, and presentation, along with an exploration of literature from opera, musical theatre, and song. Plus:

  • Private rehearsal studio throughout summer
  • Weekly private lessons
  • Weekly masterclass instruction
  • Individual coaching in German, French, and Italian diction

Voice Program fellow, soprano Alexandra Smither, shares her Music Academy of the West Summer Program experience below.

Performance Opportunities

  • A fully-staged opera production at Santa Barbara's 1,500-seat Granada Theatre. The 2018 opera production will be Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro. 
  • A large-scale performance installation "campus takeover" culminating in a new production of Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti
  • Public masterclasses
  • The opportunity to compete in the prestigious Marilyn Horne Song Competition
  • More TBA
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2018 Audition requirements

Voice Program applicants must first submit a Pre-Screening Round recording as part of the online application. Applicants will be notified by the first week of November if they have been advanced to the Live Audition Round.

NEW! International Voice Program Applicants: those residing overseas (outside North America) at the time of the auditions may submit a video upload audition in lieu of a live audition, if advanced to the Live Audition Round.

PRE-SCREENING RECORDING ROUND
The following two selections must be uploaded as audio or audio/video files within the online application:

  • 1 opera aria
  • 1 art song


INVITATION-ONLY LIVE AUDITION ROUND
The following four selections:

  • 2 contrasting opera arias
  • 2 art songs, one of which must be in English

Singers must demonstrate in their audition a thorough understanding of the character, dramatic situation, and meaning of each aria or song text.

The Music Academy provides the piano partner for the Live Round audition.

Singers not cast in the opera will enjoy other significant performance opportunities.  


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marilyn horne song Competition

Check out the 2015 Winners' Recital held at WQXR's The Greene Space, March 2016

The prestigious Marilyn Horne Song Competition awards two first prizes – one to a singer and one to a vocal pianist – for excellence in song repertoire performance and audience communication. 2017 jurors included Marilyn Horne, Renée Fleming and Jake Heggie.

 Winners Receive

  • A cash award of $5,000
  • A Spring National Recital Tour
  • A career development session in New York with 21C Media Group
  • A professional photo shoot
  • The opportunity to receive innovation funding to add artistic or creative programming to their recital 
  • The winners will perform the world premiere of  a song cycle written by a Music Academy guest composer on the tour, commissioned by the Music Academy. (2017 winners are performing a commissioned work by Jake Heggie.)

Competition Guidelines

Each singer performs three songs of varying styles.

One song must have text in English.

The Jury assesses

  • Collaboration between the singer and pianist
  • Interpretation of the text and music
  • Accuracy of diction
  • Vocal quality and technique
  • Connection and communication with the audience

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The marriage of figaro & trouble in tahiti

OPERA CAMPUS TAKEOVER:
TROUBLE IN TAHITI

Fellows will present a large-scale performance installation throughout the Music Academy campus. Vocal fellows will collaborate with instrumentalists, directors, and designers to present arias, visual art, and projections in unexpected locations, culminating in a new production of Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, conducted by Edwin Outwater.

    MOZART'S THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO

    Sung in Italian with English supertitles, the opera will be directed by James Darrah, and conducted by LA Opera Music Director James Conlon. The fully-staged and costumed production will be performed in the historic Granada Theatre. The Voice Program fellows will be accompanied by the Academy Festival Orchestra. 

    Read reviews from our 2017 production of Donizetti's Elixir of Love

    SB Independent / Montecito Journal / VOICE Magazine


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    Vocal Piano


    Vocal Piano


    2018 Voice & Vocal Piano Faculty / TEACHING ARTISTS

    Vocal pianist Nathaniel LaNasa shares his Music Academy of the West Summer Festival experience.

    Six fellow openings per year

    Training

    Collaboration and coaching of vocal repertoire for advanced pianists, stressing proficiency in both operatic and song repertoire. Plus:

    • Private rehearsal studio throughout summer
    • Weekly private lessons
    • Weekly participation in Voice fellows’ training
    • Weekly masterclass instruction

    Performance Opportunities

    • Weekly public masterclass performance opportunity
    • Opera scenes with Voice fellows
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    2018 Audition requirements

    Vocal Piano Program applicants must apply online and perform a live audition. Auditions are 15-20 minutes each.

    Applicants must use a Music Academy vocal partner. Partners are not available for rehearsal time prior to the auditions.

    Enrolled Vocal Piano fellows arrive several days prior to the start of the festival in order to participate in pre-season training.

    AUDITION REPERTOIRE

    Play the following TWO selections:

    • Strauss, “Cäcilie” in E Major
    • Mahler, “Liebst du um Schönheit” in C Major

    Play the following selection:

    • Mozart, Recitative: “E Susanna non vien” (from Nozze di Figaro) *only the recitative, not the aria which follows

    Play and Sing ONE of the following selections of your choice:

    • Leoncavallo, "Ballatella" (from Pagliacci)
    • Mozart Sextet (from Nozze di Figaro)

    SIGHT-READING WILL ALSO BE REQUIRED


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    Marilyn Horne Song Competition

    The prestigious Marilyn Horne Song Competition awards two first prizes – one to a singer and one to a vocal pianist – for excellence in song repertoire performance and audience communication. 2017 Jurors included Marilyn Horne, Renée Fleming and Jake Heggie.

    Winners Receive

    • A cash award of $5,000
    • A Spring National Recital Tour
    • A career development session in New York with 21C Media Group
    • A professional photo shoot
    • The opportunity to receive innovation funding to add artistic or creative programming to their recital 
    • The winners will perform the world premiere of  a song cycle written by a Music Academy guest composer on the tour, commissioned by the Music Academy. (2017 winners are performing a commissioned work by Jake Heggie.)

    Competition Guidelines

    Each singer performs three songs of varying styles.

    One song must have text in English.

    The Jury assesses

    • Collaboration between the singer and pianist
    • Interpretation of the text and music
    • Accuracy of diction
    • Vocal quality and technique, and
    • Connection and communication with the audience

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    Collaborative Piano


    Collaborative Piano


    Collaborative Piano Faculty

     

    8 fellow openings per year

    Jonathan Feldman Collaborative Piano Masterclass

    Training

    In-depth exploration of the vast instrumental repertoire, focusing on general concepts of successful partnering, technical and pianistic concerns, building repertoire, and keys to professional development including: resumes, repertoire lists, and stage decorum. Covers a wide range of literature, including sonatas and duos, orchestral reductions, and character pieces. Plus:

    • Weekly private lessons
    • Weekly masterclass instruction
    • Regular collaboration with instrumental fellows
    • Option to attend the Vocal Piano and Solo Piano masterclasses
    • Frequent interaction with the Academy's outstanding instrumental faculty.

    Performance

    • Weekly masterclass performance opportunity
    • Various keyboard parts in Music Academy orchestral concerts

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    2018 Audition requirements

    Collaborative Piano applicants must apply online and perform a live audition

    Applicants must use Music Academy instrumental partners. There will be no exceptions made for substitution of partners. Partners are not available for rehearsal time prior to the auditions. Auditions are 15-20 minutes each.

    Four components of the audition

    • Prepared audition repertoire as outlined below
    • Brief interview
    • A piece (TBD) will be given to each applicant one half hour prior to the audition which must be played at the audition
    • Sight-reading may be requested

    Orchestral Reduction
    Choose one of the following concertos

    • Sibelius: Violin Concerto, Mvt 1
    • Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations (complete work)
    • Copland: Clarinet Concerto (all movements)

    Sonata
    Choose one of the following sonatas; applicant must be prepared to play the entire work

    • Beethoven: Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 8 in G Major, Op. 30, No. 3
    • Brahms: Sonata for Clarinet and Piano No. 1 in F Minor, Op. 120, No. 1
    • Schumann: Fantasy Pieces (all movements)

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    Solo Piano


    Solo Piano


    Solo Piano Faculty

    Music Academy 2016 Guest Artist Leon Fleisher teaches a Solo Piano Public Masterclass.

    8 fellow openings per year

    Training

    Coaching with a primary emphasis on interpretive and stylistic mastery of the extensive literature for solo piano as well as concerto repertoire and chamber music with piano. Plus:

    • Weekly private lessons
    • Participation in one or more chamber groups
    • Weekly participation in Voice fellows’ training
    • Weekly solo piano and chamber masterclass instruction

    Performance Opportunities

    • Weekly masterclass performance opportunity
    • Weekly Fellow recitals on Friday evenings ("Picnic Concerts")
    • Weekly community concerts in downtown Santa Barbara
    • "PianoFest" (a recital featuring all solo piano Fellows)
    • Other engagements at the Music Academy and local venues
    • Participation in one of two chamber music groups:
      • Faculty Intensive Chamber Music Experience: In an intensive program, a faculty member coaches, rehearses with, and performs as a member of the chamber group.
      • Fellow Chamber Music Program: Over a three to four week period, groups receive weekly coaching from a faculty member. The group performs all or a portion of a work in a public concert and/or a public masterclass.

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    2018 Audition requirements TBA

    2017 SOLO PIANO REQUIREMENTS (2018 requirements TBA)

    • Video Audition Uploads ONLY (no live auditions). For help creating your audition video, watch the following tutorial: Recording Tutorial Video
    • Videos may be uploaded to the online application as separate tracks for each repertoire selection.
    • Video file must have been recorded within the past year and may not be the same file submitted during a previous Music Academy application season.
    • Video Upload Auditions must contain THREE solo piano works of contrasting style. One of these selections should be a complete multi-movement work (such as a Sonata of Schubert or Rachmaninov) or its equivalent (for example, the Liszt Sonata, a Bach Toccata, or Schumann’s Carnival).

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    SOLO PIANO COMPETITION

    Solo Piano competition sends a winning fellow to perform on national tour in partnership with Steinway & Sons, a first-ever collaboration as part of the Academy’s All-Steinway distinction

    A new Solo Piano Competition was launched during the 2017 Summer Festival. The winner, selected by a panel of professionals, was presented with a cash prize and will tour, performing recitals in Steinway & Sons venues nationally.

    The 2017 panel included guest composer Timo Andres. The 2017 winner, Zhu Wang, will perform a world premiere by Andres on the tour, commissioned by the Music Academy.

    2017 WINNER RECEIVED

    • The winning pianist will be presented by the Music Academy in partnership with Steinway & Sons in a recital tour, including performances in Santa Barbara and New York
    • All travel and accommodations for each recital, as well as musical preparation and coaching by Academy faculty prior to their recital tour will be provided
    • The winning pianist received The Luria Foundation Prize, a $5,000 cash award.
    • During the tour, the competition winner will give the world premiere of a new work for solo piano by Timo Andres, commissioned by the Music Academy with support from the Luria Foundation for the occasion
    • A career development consultation session will be scheduled with 21C Media in New York
    • The opportunity to receive innovation funding to support artistic or creative endeavors associated with their recital program

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    Strings, Winds, Brass, Harp & Percussion


    Strings, Winds, Brass, Harp & Percussion


     

    Larry Rachleff leads the Music Academy of the West's Academy Festival Orchestra in Dvořák's "New World" Symphony at the Granada Theatre.

     

    Strings, Winds, Brass & Percussion Faculty

     

    STRINGS

    WOODWINDS

    BRASS

    PERCUSSION & TIMPANI

    HARP

    GUEST ARTISTS (additional artists TBA)

    GUEST CONDUCTORS  (additional artists TBA)


    2018 Audition requirements

    STRINGS, WINDS, BRASS & PERCUSSION

    Live Audition OR Video Upload Audition *equal consideration granted to both audition methods

    • Live Audition applicants: indicate preferred audition city/date within application. Live auditions are granted in the order that applications are received. Some audition dates may fill prior to the application deadline, so early applications are encouraged. Review audition schedule prior to submitting an application to verify if your preferred date is still available. Live audition appointments will be communicated by email following the application deadline. Live auditions are filmed by Academy administration for later review by Academy faculty/adjudicators. Faculty are present on select dates to observe live auditions.

     

    • Video Upload Audition applicants: upload one continuous, unedited audition video within the online application (upload one video, not separate tracks; do not stop the camera between repertoire selections). Videos must be unaccompanied. Video file must have been recorded within the past year and may not be the same file submitted during a previous Music Academy application season. For best video upload speed, we recommend the following internet browsers: Chrome, Safari and Firefox (the most updated versions of each). For help creating your audition video, watch the following tutorial: Recording Tutorial Video

    See 2018 repertoire requirements for your studio below.

    HARP

    • Video Audition Uploads ONLY (no live auditions). For help creating your audition video, watch the following tutorial: Recording Tutorial Video
    • Videos may be uploaded to the online application as separate tracks for each repertoire selection.
    • Video file must have been recorded within the past year and may not be the same file submitted during a previous Music Academy application season. See 2018 repertoire requirements for your studio below.

    Repertoire Requirements


    chamber music

    Woodwinds and Brass

    Upon arrival at the Music Academy, woodwind and brass fellows interested in participating in a chamber ensemble will meet with faculty members to select repertoire and divide into chamber groupings

    Strings

    All string fellows will participate in a chamber music group while at the Music Academy. Chamber Music for strings is split into three courses of study, which applicants will order by their preference during the application process. Based on applicants’ audition and expressed interest, fellows will be placed into either the String Quartet Seminar, the Faculty Intensive Chamber Music Experience, or the Fellow Chamber Music Program: 

    String Quartet Seminar

    Led by the Takács Quartet, the String Quartet Seminar offers sixteen string fellows comprising four string quartets a special two-week rigorous training course beginning the week prior to the Festival. Fellows in the SQS program will receive daily coachings by members of the Takács Quartet, participate in a string quartet masterclass, and watch the Takács Quartet work during an open rehearsal – all with a focus on helping fellows hone techniques vital in quartet and chamber music collaboration. The program continues with performances in Hahn Hall featuring all four quartets and additional coachings from faculty and guest artists throughout the summer. String fellows participating in this program also receive  another two weeks of intensive training with the Takács Quartet when they return to the Music  Academy later in the Summer Festival.

     Faculty Intensive Chamber Music Experience

    This intensive experience puts a faculty member in a chamber group with fellows. Each faculty member participating in the program will coach, rehearse with, and perform as a member of the group. Groups will rehearse frequently, culminating in a performance of a full work of standard repertoire at the end of the two week period. 

    Fellow Chamber Music Program

    Based on the repertoire information submitted by applicants during the admissions process, fellows participating in the Fellow Chamber Music Program will be assigned groups and repertoire based on prior chamber music experience and interest in repertoire. Each group will receive weekly coaching from a faculty member for three to four weeks before performing all or a portion of a work in a public concert and/or a public masterclass.


    academy festival Orchestra

    All instrumental fellows participate in this orchestra, which is led by distinguished guest conductors chosen for both artistic skill and dedication to making great music with pre-professional musicians. Each program is preceded by sectionals and five rehearsals.

    International guest conductors lead rehearsals and sectionals culminating in Academy Festival Orchestra concerts at the historic Granada Theatre in downtown Santa Barbara. Academy faculty artists observe and participate as rehearsal coaches, and occasionally perform in the concerts.

    Previous guest conductors include: Thomas Adès, Christoph von Dohnányi, Alan Gilbert, Peter Oundjian, Leonard Slatkin, and Osmo Vänskä. Larry Rachleff and Stéphane Denève, among others to be announced, will join the Academy in 2018.


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     STRING LEADERSHIP program & orchestral partnerships

    String Leadership Program

    • Under the direction of former New York Philharmonic Concertmaster Glenn Dicterow, the String Leadership Program offers select violinists an intensive opportunity to explore concertmaster excerpts and the fundamentals of leading a string section, as well as reviewing concert etiquette. Participants in the program will meet weekly in a private masterclass with Mr. Dicterow, performing excerpts for one another and discussing the roles and responsibility of being a leader in an orchestra.
    • Most concertmasters and principal seconds for Academy Festival Orchestra concerts will be selected from participants of the String Leadership Program.
    • Section seating rotates each week.
    • All violin fellows are eligible to audition for the  program at the beginning of the summer.

    Orchestral Partnerships

    • 2017 marked the fourth year of a partnership with the New York Philharmonic. Masterclasses, seminars, and private lessons took place at the Music Academy during a residency of the orchestra's leading musicians.

    • In addition, those musicians oversaw an audition through which ten Academy fellows were chosen to participate in an orchestral exchange program: an intensive, immersive residency to be held in January 2018 in New York City. Activities will include private lessons, chamber music, a mock audition, seminars with artists and administrators, and appearances with the orchestra in a subscription week of rehearsals and concerts. The exchange program provides travel and housing for participating fellows, who are also paid a stipend.