Stony Brook University Young Artists Program
(formerly the Pre-College Division)


Chamber Music (Strings, Piano and Winds)

Jazz (Winds, Rhythm Instruments and Keyboards)

Percussion Ensemble


Talented young musicians have the opportunity to advance their ensemble and musicianship skills, and broaden their musical horizons with the guidance of an exceptional and devoted faculty at Stony Brook University.

In the chamber music, opera scenes, jazz, and percussion ensemble classes, students develop their collaborative and performance skills with repertoire specifically selected to challenge the group and its individuals. Through the musicianship curriculum, students acquire understanding of the foundations of music theory and aural skills, and achieve greater musical literacy. The ensemble and musicianship classes are supplemented with performance classes, interactive workshops, and performances by guest artists.

The Stony Brook Young Artist Program aims to offer high-level music training, often sought out in New York City Pre-College programs, but in a nurturing, community-oriented environment that values individuality, initiative, and personal growth. 


Once applications are received you will be contacted to schedule the audition.  Each audition is 15 minutes long, and is observed by a committee of two or three people.  The audition is made up of the following components:

  • Two pieces of music with contrasting style and tempo that represents your current level of skill.  This can be a NYSSMA piece or an etude you have been preparing with your private instructor. There are no guidelines for the pieces you should select, but solos of NYSSMA levels 5-6 are usually appropriate.
  • 1 or 2 major scales in two octaves
  • Sightreading
  • Short interview of the applicant

Auditions are always video recorded for further review by the audition committee.  Videos are never made public and are securely deleted after the enrollment process is complete.


All classes meet on Saturdays. Each area of study (opera, jazz, composition, chamber music) follows its own class schedule.  A typical day begins at 10:00 AM and concludes at 2:00 PM.

A sample class schedule:

 10:00 a.m.
 Chamber Music
 11:15 a.m.
 11:30 a.m.
 Performance Class
 12:30 p.m.
 12:45 p.m.
 2:00 p.m.  Classes end


Concerto Competition
The annual concerto competition is open to all Pre-College Division students for any instrument or voice. The winner will perform with the University Orchestra in March on the Main Stage of the Staller Center for the annual Children’s Concert.  The concerto should be standard repertoire, and short works or a movement of a concerto should be approved by the director and the conductor well in advance. Auditions will be held in November.

Free tickets to Music Department and Staller Center events
Throughout the year students and their families have access to exclusive concerts and events held at the Staller Center.   This past year families were able to experience the Emerson String Quartet, Stony Brook Symphony Orchestra, Stony Brook Opera and Faculty Recitals at no cost.


Non refundable deposit: $100

Full year tuition:  $2300

There are no additional fees or expenses required for the year.  Tuition also covers the cost of concerts and tickets to all events.

All payments must be made online.  Incremental payment plans are available.

percussion FINANCIAL AID

Need-based financial aid and merit-based scholarships are available to qualified families.  After acceptance to the program, a separate financial form must be completed.




How does tuition compare to similar programs?

Pre-College programs in Manhattan cost more than $12,000 per year before you factor in the time and cost of transportation each week.  As a not-for-profit institution, our program offers more experienced teachers and similar performance and academic programs at the lowest possible cost.

Do you have a youth orchestra or chamber orchestra?

Large ensembles are not offered through the Community Music Program.  We are more than happy to recommend some youth orchestra programs in the area.  

If I'm already enrolled in a youth orchestra, why do I need chamber music? 

Orchestral performance is a specialized skill in itself, but chamber music, particularly for string players, gives performers the chance to be soloists but also have the interaction with other musicians, which makes orchestra so much fun!

Do you have summer programs available?

A one week string quartet camp for middle and high school students is offered in August.  Click here for more information.

Do you offer private instruction as part of your program?

Private instruction is a requirement of the Pre-College Division, but is not offered directly through the program.  The instructors at Stony Brook are among the best in the world, and we offer a free matching service for students who are looking for private instruction or tutoring.

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