One-on-one lessons with our talented teachers offer students invaluable learning opportunities, but the chance to play with peers provides another dimension to music education. Ensembles allow students to hear how they contribute to a group and build collaborative skills. The Community School supports various ensemble classes.
Audition information for the 2022–23 academic year is now available for select groups. See below for information.
Weekly group classes and small ensembles enable students new to the Chamber Music Institute to concentrate on fine-tuning specific skills. Our experienced faculty hold personalized coaching lessons, master classes, as well as group instruction. Smaller ensembles display their accomplishments through various performances, not the least of which is an end-of-the-year recital.
View audition information
The Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute offers one of the most comprehensive and intense pre-college level chamber music learning experiences of any music school in North America. Accepted students attend weekly coaching sessions with our esteemed faculty.
Ensembles also participate in chamber music competitions. Previous groups have garnered numerous accolades, including from the Fischoff Competition, Coleman Chamber Music Competition, M-Prize, Pasadena Chamber Music Competition, and the Young Artists Peninsula Music Festival.
Ensembles have appeared on the nationally broadcast From the Top show on the Public Radio International as well as annually on LACMA’s Sundays Live. Students frequently perform in Colburn’s Friday Night Recital series, School Recitals, Honors Recitals, and local schools through the Colburn Musical Encounter program. The year culminates in the Chamber Music Recitals in Colburn’s Thayer Hall.
The Ed and Mari Edelman Chamber Music Institute also supports the Honors Chamber Music Scholarship program. This is awarded through an audition process to students who demonstrate a high level of skill.
The Community School has several instrumental ensembles, including small combos and a Big Band, devoted to the performance of jazz repertoire and the development of the students’ musical concepts, improvisations, and compositions.
All instruments (including stringed instruments) are welcome in these ensembles. Groups perform and record each semester, and rehearsal and performance attendance is mandatory.
A number of Colburn Jazz Workshop groups have advanced to the finals of the Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival, where they have garnered a several group and individual student awards. Students have also been honored in the DownBeat Magazine Student Music Awards, The Music Center’s Spotlight Competition, and by the National YoungArts Foundation. Past master class clinicians include Wynton Marsalis, Eric Reed, Joe LaBarbera, Reggie Thomas, and John Clayton.
Colburn’s Adult Jazz Workshops consist of musicians who are proficient on their instruments and have some experience in jazz studies. We will explore the jazz genre through active listening, discussion, and application of specific elements of jazz performance. All group members are encouraged to contribute to exchange of ideas and apply concepts by recording themselves to share with the class. New students welcome, please contact instructor Liz Kinnon for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org
The String Ensemble is made up of about 30 violins, violas, cellos, and double basses. Students in the ensemble will focus on development of orchestral performance techniques, musicianship, sight-reading, and ensemble skills. Repertoire is in the intermediate range.
Age minimum: 5th grade; 10 years old by September 1
The String Orchestra is made up of about 30 violins, violas, cellos, and double basses. Musicians in the String Orchestra have achieved a level of intermediate or advanced musicianship and can tackle the challenge of a more intricate repertoire. Featured composers often include Corelli, Handel, Mozart, Holst, and Richard Meyer.
Age minimum: 6th grade; 11 years old by September 1
Colburn Youth Orchestra is the largest advanced ensemble of the Community School, performing regularly throughout the year. This is a full symphonic orchestra with strings, winds, brass, and percussion. The Colburn Youth Orchestra is conducted by Maxim Eshkenazy, who also directs the Colburn Chamber Orchestra and the Colburn Sinfonietta.
Age requirements: 13–18
Colburn Chamber Orchestra is a small ensemble for advanced strings conducted by Maxim Eshkenazy, who also leads the Colburn Youth Orchestra and the Colburn Sinfonietta. The orchestra regularly appears on LACMA’s Sundays Live, broadcast on KUSC 91.5 FM.
Adult group classes are semester based and will be held eight times for 60 minutes each per fall and spring semester, and five times in summer. Actual meeting dates to be arranged with Ms. Lundgren. Please contact email@example.com for approval to enroll.
For intermediate and advanced students. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for spring schedule and approval to enroll.
Contact Kenton Youngstrom for permission to enroll at email@example.com
For students Grade 6-8 with at least one year of private instruction or comparable experience. This class is an opportunity for percussion students to enhance and expand upon their existing percussion studies in a fun and collaborative environment. Activities will include percussion chamber music, solo performing, accessory instrument techniques and an introduction to peak performance methods. Each semester will culminate in a concert of chamber and solo works.
For students Grade 9-12 with at least two years of private instruction or comparable experience. This class is an opportunity for high school students to enhance and expand upon their existing percussion studies in a fun and collaborative environment. Activities will include percussion chamber music, solo performing, peak performance methods, and accessory instrument techniques. Each semester will culminate in a concert of chamber and solo works.
Taught by Harvey Pittel, this ensemble is for intermediate to advanced saxophone students. Students will be placed according to their level of musicianship and experience.
Interested students should submit an inquiry form.
Designed for both Suzuki and traditional violin students, this course will give an introduction into the early stages of sight reading, violin theory, and musicianship as well as a general overview of the basics of orchestra skills (learning proper violin posture when seated with a music stand and how to read and mark a music score). There will be several small group projects in addition to basic composition exercises.
All new and returning students must audition for placement.
Weekly on Wednesdays, 6:00 – 6:40 pm
Participants must study privately and are required to have finished Joanne Martin, I Can Read Music, Volume 1 prior to audition and Charles S. Peter & Paul Yoder, Master Theory, Book 1 (up to lesson 15) prior to the first meeting. No previous orchestral experience is necessary.
Minimum Age Requirement
3rd grade; must be eight years old by September 1, 2022
Recommended Minimum Level of Playing
Dvořák Humoresque (Suzuki Vol. 3)
Auditions for the 2022 – 2023 academic year will be held on Saturday, June 11, 2022 via Zoom. Upon completion of the application form, a link will be provided to schedule an audition time.
Please be prepared to demonstrate:
Audition results will be sent via email by midnight on June 15.
Concert Band is an ensemble designed for middle school wind and percussion students who demonstrate playing ability at the intermediate level. No previous band experience is required. This ensemble emphasizes music reading and ensemble skills.
Rehearsals: Saturdays, 3–5:30 pm
Wind Ensemble is intended for high school intermediate through advanced level wind and percussion students. Repertoire includes original and arranged works for winds. This ensemble emphasizes music reading and ensemble skills.
Saturdays, 6–8:30 pm