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U.S. Music Schools for Talented Teenagers

by Carissa Lawrence, studioD

When teenagers show a high musical aptitude and have enthusiasm for singing or playing an instrument, it's important to give them the chance to explore pursuing a career in music. Music school is an excellent option for talented teenagers. While studying the standard high school curriculum, music students are also learning about the various aspects of music and developing their skills. There are a number of summer programs and performing arts schools with music programs that may be beneficial to musically gifted teens.

School of Creative and Performing Arts

For talented teenage solo singer/songwriters and bands, the School of Creative and Performing Arts' New York campus offers intensive summer programs designed to develop music performance skills and build general musical knowledge. Music students here are given chances to write or arrange, perform and record their own music. Through a series of workshops and individual lessons in areas like performance, stage technique, lyric writing and arranging, the School of Creative and Performing Arts provides students with valuable training. While students are not required to audition, they must have a firm knowledge in music theory relating to key signatures and times and major and minor scales. Students are also required to have at least one year of training in voice or the instrument they play.

Illinois Summer Youth Music Program

The Illinois Summer Youth Music program is one of the most reputable summer music programs in the U.S. Talented high school musicians are encouraged to develop their musical skills and increase their knowledge and appreciation of music. The weeklong program is held on the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's campus. Students participate in large and small ensemble rehearsals, sectional rehearsals, and technique and repertoire classes in addition to electives and individual practices. ISYM accepts applications on a first-come, first-served basis; and students perform an audition on the first day to determine placement.

Academy of Music at Hamilton High School

A magnet program of the Los Angeles Unified School District, the Academy of Music attempts to promote both academic and artistic achievement simultaneously. Students can choose to major in areas such as guitar, instrumental music, jazz studies, music technology, piano and vocal music. Programs of study include seven instructional periods per day, after school and weekend rehearsals, tours and performances. Admission into the Academy of Music is dependent upon accumulation of the required number of magnet points, which are acquired based on criteria such as the applicant’s time on the waiting list, the student population and demographics of the school for which the applicant is zoned, and whether the applicant has a sibling attending the Academy of Music already.

Youth Performing Arts School

Located in Kentucky, the Youth Performing Arts School provides students with the unique opportunity of majoring in the performing arts. Students can choose various majors such as vocal music and instrumental music including band, orchestra and piano. While attending the Youth Performing Arts School, students receive rigorous training from professional artists who serve as dedicated teachers. The goal of each program of study is to prepare students for college or conservatory programs. Students at the Youth Performing Arts School complete their academic requirements at duPont Manual High School. While the Youth Performing Arts School is tuition free, students must audition in order to be admitted.

About the Author

Based in Gainesville, Carissa Lawrence is an experienced teacher who has been writing education related articles since 2013. Lawrence holds a master's degree in early childhood education from the University of Florida.

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