When do I apply?
The application is open now. The deadline to apply for fall enrollment is May 1.
How do I apply?
Learn about our application process.
How do I audition?
Auditions will be held in person on Berklee's campus on Saturday, May 20, 2023.
Audition guidelines by program and discipline:
How much does it cost to participate in City Music?
All of our academic year programs are scholarship-based. Students accepted to the City Music Preparatory Academy and High School Academy attend the program at no cost.
Some of our summer programs may require a small registration fee to participate.
Do I qualify to apply?
Applicants must be in fourth–12th grade at the time the program begins, live in the Boston or Greater Boston area, have a year of experience on their instrument, and access to their instrument.
If you do not live in Boston or the Greater Boston area, check out the Berklee City Music Network.
If you live in the Boston area, but do not have a year of experience, look into our Music Clubhouse affiliates.
I do not want to be a performance artist when I grow up, but I love music—is City Music for me?
Yes. City Music students find empowerment through the performing arts and go on to lead productive lives in a wide variety of careers, equipped with a creative entrepreneurial spirit. This program is right for you if you want to explore your creativity and have the performing arts as your main extracurricular focus.
City Music provides the highest quality performing arts education for students in the fourth–12th grade; the programs are geared toward college preparatory performing arts education. City Music students should be committed to exploring their craft, increasing their creativity, and understanding their platform as an artist. The program is a weekly commitment of five or six hours per week with additional practice time. We ask that students are committed to participate for at least the full year following their acceptance.
Is City Music a school?
No. The City Music Preparatory Academy and High School Academy are intensive after-school programs.
What kind of events happen throughout the year?
In addition to the program instruction, each semester students have performance opportunities at our programs’ winter showcase and completion ceremonies. Students may also attend master classes, jam sessions, college workshops, community-building events, concerts, and various other performance opportunities.
Are there other scholarship opportunities for City Music students?
Yes. City Music offers two scholarships to attend Berklee programs. The City Music Summer Scholarship, valued at approximately $5,000, is a tuition scholarship to attend Berklee’s Aspire: Five-Week Music Performance Intensive. The City Music College Scholarship, available to eligible high school seniors, is a highly competitive merit- and need-based partial- or full-tuition scholarship to Berklee College of Music.
How do I apply for the City Music Summer Scholarship?
In order to apply for the City Music Summer Scholarship, you must be nominated by your City Music Network site or apply through City Music Boston as a resident of Boston or the Greater Boston area.
How do I apply for the City Music College Scholarship?
There is not a separate application process for the City Music College Scholarship. To be eligible, students must apply and be awarded the City Music Summer Scholarship. Students must also apply and be accepted to Berklee and apply for financial aid at Berklee.
How selective is the program?
The City Music Boston program is highly selective. Each year, we audition students from across Boston and the Greater Boston area for an average of 10–20 spots for each academy. Invariably, there are not enough spots for the talented students who audition. However, we hope that the auditions are a positive learning experience that provide invaluable audition experience and build persistence for applicants, better preparing them for the auditioning world of performing arts. All students who are not accepted are invited to reaudition the next year and are referred to local clubhouses to continue pursuing their passions.
What does the calendar look like?
The Preparatory Academy and High School Academy begin in September and run through the first weekend in May. The programs are closed for winter break from mid-December through mid-January. The Preparatory Academy meets for 24 Saturdays a year. The High School Academy meets three times per week for 24 weeks and follows the Berklee academic calendar and Boston Public Schools calendar. If either institution is closed due to a holiday, break, or weather, then we do not have programming on that date.
What does the newly redesigned Preparatory Academy look like?
The new Preparatory Academy has expanded to include not only music, but also dance and theater. This multidisciplinary approach will allow students to become masters of their particular discipline while also exploring their creativity through a multidisciplinary approach. The pedagogy focuses on building creativity and passion, expanding curiosity, and deepening community through a troupe model. Participants will rotate through classes in each discipline while also receiving a master class in their discipline each week.