The Music Academy of the West is home to a unique full-scholarship outreach program that sharpens young minds through an intensive regimen of music performance and instruction. Inaugurated in 1998, the MERIT (Music Education Reinforces Intellect and Talent) Program provides musicians ages 11 to 17 with intensive mentoring from Music Academy fellows including: private instruction, chamber music coaching, masterclass participation, and social activities. Participants also have the opportunity to observe some masterclasses and rehearsals led by Music Academy faculty. The MERIT program is open to players of all orchestral instruments as well as pianists. MERIT fellows will perform in concert at Hahn Hall as part of the program. This performance is free and open to the public.


Nico Abondolo
MERIT program faculty advisor

A full-scholarship program, MERIT is supported by Patricia and Larry Durham, Connie Frank and Evan Thompson, The Cheeryble Foundation, The Johnson Ohana Charitable Foundation, The Henry E. and Lola Monroe Foundation, the Elizabeth Firth Wade Foundation, and Goldman Sachs.