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John Adams Young Composers Program

John Adams Young Composers Program

Ages 12 to 20

When: Fall and Spring Sessions

Tuition: $2085 per session

The Young Composers program was founded in honor of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Adams, who has a long association with Crowden, on the occasion of his 60th birthday.

Ages 12 to 20

Crowden music school staff on stage
Student in class

John Adams Young Composers Program

Matthew Cmiel, Program Director

The Young Composers Program was founded in honor of Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Adams, who has a long association with Crowden, on the occasion of his 60th birthday. The heart of our mission is to guide and mentor our students through the formative stages of their creative growth as composers.

With a diverse faculty of professional composers who are dedicated, gifted teachers, and a rich network of professional musicians and ensembles, the John Adams Young Composers Program is uniquely poised to offer a launching pad for artistic expression that is grounded in disciplined work, expert individual guidance and real-world experience.

Course Description

Group Seminar: Wednesdays, 4:30 to 6pm PST

Individual private composition lessons scheduled weekly by mutual arrangement with instructor.

Fall Session: September 12 to January 23
Spring Session: January 25 to June 5

This hands-on program guides young composers in the creative process. Each week, students participate in both a group seminar and individual lesson. Accomplished faculty guide students in developing their composition techniques, exploring musical examples, critical listening, and score analysis.

For the 2020-21 academic year, the John Adams Young Composers Program will take place online, and is open to students from anywhere. The Fall semester will be focused on learning the tools to make music in a digital world. Students will engage in discussions of the history of electronic music, how to make music using only a computer, ways to incorporate recorded sounds into your work, and how to collaborate between disciplines.

In the Spring, students will create works of chamber music for piano and strings. They will explore the breadth of chamber music repertoire, focusing on the power and beauty of collaborative music-making.

Each semester will culminate in a virtual performance of student works by professional musicians.

How to Enroll

Complete our online registration form to Crowden before August 15 for the fall session and January 15 for the spring session. Crowden will contact registrants to schedule a placement interview with the Program Director.

Crowden is working carefully to reopen our campus. » Click here to learn more about our reopening and COVID-19 response plans.
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