Youth & Teen: Classes & Ensembles

Build your skills.

Our programs for youth and teens are designed for beginners as well as students who want to enhance their musical skills and experiences.

Instrument classes are available for beginners; general music theory and jazz theory classes explore the building blocks of music; and group performance opportunities abound with large and small ensembles for progressing musicians.

Plus, if you don’t find the group you’re looking for, we’ll design a Custom Ensemble for you.

Curious?

Youth Orchestra Ensembles

Violin, viola, cello, and bass students at all levels have a home in our youth orchestra programs. Audition for a spot with Chamber Strings, Camerata Strings, or our elite Sinfonia Youth Orchestra, where advanced students will experience the absolute thrill of playing in a full orchestra. Together, students will challenge themselves as players and collaborators, developing leadership, concentration, and teamwork skills alongside the most dedicated talent in our region to create something beautiful. 

Our three levels of ensemble meet every Saturday, and students who participate in both Sinfonia and Groton Hill Wind Ensemble are eligible for special discounts.

Youth Wind Ensembles

Our unique regional wind ensemble program offers woodwind, brass, and percussion players the opportunity to play, learn, and grow together as performers. With three levels of ensemble to audition for, from the prestigious Groton Hill Wind Ensemble to the Groton Hill Meadow Winds and Chamber Winds, students of all abilities will find a fun, welcoming, challenging home for musical exploration at Groton Hill. As students advance through the ensembles, they will explore an increasingly broad repertoire, from beginner classical to advanced jazz and non-Western music. 

Our three levels of ensemble meet every Saturday, and students who participate in both Sinfonia and Groton Hill Wind Ensemble are eligible for special discounts

Youth Chorus

Chorus is a great starting point for young singers to develop their love of music and their voices through healthy vocal technique. We offer three levels of Youth Chorus, Harmonia, Lyrica, and Prelude, each with a unique focus and covering a range of age-appropriate material. There is also a strong focus on teamwork and personal development.

Beginner Piano

Ages 12 – 17

Have you admired your friends who could play piano? Have you “played around” on your own? Do you want to build a good foundation of technique and note reading so you can move on your own path? This class will unlock your potential to make music in a friendly, fun, and low-stress setting.

Intro to Songwriting

Ages 13 – 17

Beginners and experienced songwriters alike are welcome to join in this exploration of the essential elements of song creation. Our goal is to lay a solid foundation of storytelling craft and musical skill. We will analyze song structure across various styles and decades, and explore the topics of musicality of language, lyric-writing, song form, building chords and chord progressions, rhythm and groove, making melodies, and writing effectively for the voice. Each class will culminate in an assignment that will vary (in terms of difficulty) based on your level of experience. There will be multiple opportunities to share work with the group for evaluation and to collaborate with others.

Intro to Jazz Theory

Ages 12 – 17

Learning jazz style can seem an intimidating thing, but once you understand the basics you’ll open up a whole new world of expression and enjoyment! We’ll explore jazz chord structure, voicing, and progressions, plus jazz scales, and scale-chord relationships. Using actual jazz charts you’ll see typical harmonizations with chords, and can begin to apply them to your own instrument, and explore the fascinating practice of improvisation.

Music Theory

Ages 12 – 17

Enjoy your music more and become a better musician! Whether you’re just learning an instrument or have been playing for years, an understanding of music theory basics (notes, intervals, chords, scales, rhythm, melody, and harmony) will make the process faster and easier. Strengthening your note-reading skill allows you to concentrate more on instrument technique and expressiveness. Being able to identify scales, chords, phrases, and forms help in sightreading and memorizing music.

Piano Seminar

Ages 10 – 17

This 10-week seminar is a series of masterclass-style sessions designed to help students refine their playing skills and musical interpretation. Students perform prepared pieces and receive feedback on performance practice and musicianship from the instructor (a rotating list of teachers from our piano faculty) and the group. The seminar will also feature discussions on improving performance skills such as memorization, preparing for recitals and competitions, and piano repertoire. Students will be encouraged to perform their seminar pieces in recital.

Flute Ensemble

Ages 12 – 18

Are you looking for opportunities to meet and play with fellow flute students? Come explore the family of flute instruments from piccolos to contrabasses. Music selected will be both challenging and fun. Whether you have played in an ensemble or not, our Teen Flute Ensemble will lead you to individual growth as a musician and ensemble member.

Custom Ensembles

All ages

Ready to play in a group? Students of all styles of music, from classical to jazz, and rock, are invited to sign up for a Custom Ensemble. Playing music with others is an essential element in developing your musical craft and ramping up the learning process. Beginners will make faster progress, experienced players will be challenged to higher levels, and everyone can share one of the true joys of music through learning and playing together. Experience in a chamber group or small ensemble is not required, but students should have good basic technique on their instrument and strong music reading skills. Days, times, and start dates are coordinated with all the players and the ensemble coach.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email our Class & Ensemble Manager.

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