"HSCI is such a fantastic experience that connects young composers with performers, something that is vital when learning how to write music. I always advocate for composers to get acquainted with instrumentalists, and Boston Conservatory's High School Composition program really achieves this."—Charles (Former HSCI Participant, Finalist Award Winner)
July 10–21, 2017
The High School Composition Intensive (HSCI) is a two-week program designed to challenge and engage students who are serious about music composition. Young composers will take part in a rigorous daily practice of composition through faculty-led private and studio composition lessons. All participants will build a toolbox of techniques that are essential on the path to finding their voice. Students will learn how to write quickly and effectively with limited time to wait for "inspiration to strike." They will discover the rehearsal techniques of professional musicians and/or ensembles and will have an opportunity to attend lectures by working composers on their music and processes. Students will receive guidance in the art of blending genres (visual, drama conveyed musically) through trips to local museums.
Ultimately, each student composer will develop a portfolio of works for collegiate applications and experience their work being performed by professional musical ensembles, including The Worcester Chamber Music Society and Transient Canvas.
By the end of this two-week intensive, students will gain a more advanced understanding of music theory, an improved fluency in notating their compositions, and greater confidence in their skill and creativity as composers.
Who Should Apply
High school students, ages 15 to 18, with some foundation in music composition.
Tuition and Fees
- Application Fee: $90 (before April 1); $125 (April 2–May 1)
- Tuition: $2,075
- Housing and Meals:* $1,285
- Meals Only:* TBA
Students who take advantage of the housing and meal plan enjoy on-campus housing in the Conservatory’s historical brownstones and the many offerings of the Berklee cafeteria, just down the street.
*Students may request a waiver of housing and/or meals with proof of alternate options. All waivers are at the discretion of the Extension Programs Office.
Via a private grant, limited scholarships are available for Boston public school students only. For more information, contacct the Extension Programs Office. No other scholarships are available for this program.
How to Apply
Students should submit an application, supplemental materials, and fee through our online application system:
- One letter of recommendation (teachers, music or otherwise, including band or chorus conductors)
- Scores of between two and five works (hard copy submissions are also accepted)
- Include recordings of your works, if available (MIDI is acceptable if a live recording is not available. You must include an accompanying score for each submitted recording. Please do not send originals; all materials submitted become the property of The Boston Conservatory and cannot be returned.)
- One short essay (200–400 words) describing your musical interests
- There is no additional charge to submit your materials through our online platform, and we receive all materials instantly. Individual files can be as large as 5GB, though larger files may take longer to upload.
- Acceptance decisions will be communicated via the online system. Accepted students must complete registration through the same system.
- Registered students will be billed separately and will receive an email within 48-hours of registration.
Apply by May 1, 2017.
"The HSCI program was great for me in developing my compositional skills. When I first got the welcome packet after being accepted and read that we were to write four pieces of music in two weeks, I became extremely nervous; I wasn't sure I could compost that fast. However, working with the faculty, performers, and the other composers not only allowed me to write quickly, but also pushed me to grow and write thoughtfully, as well. HSCI is a great program and I would not have gotten where I am without it!"—Molly (Former HSCI Participant, Merit Award Winner)