at Wellesley College

For more than 70 years, the Chamber Music Workshop (CMW) has provided amateur musicians with the opportunity to expand their knowledge of chamber music by collaborating with friends old and new, while learning from world-class performers.

Applications are accepted for individuals and pre-formed groups including strings, winds, brass, pianists, and singers. Individuals will be matched according to ability as well as personnel and repertoire requests.

About the Chamber Music Workshop

In addition to daily chamber music coachings by Conference faculty and CMW Artists-in-Residence, participants have the opportunity to partake in masterclasses, seminars, performances, chamber music reading sessions and learning new commissioned works, as well as attend open rehearsals, lectures and concerts from faculty members and students of the Contemporary Performance Institute.
Participants live and socialize with the Composers Conference Fellows , CPI and Faculty Artists, and the resulting shared experience and synergy creates a close-knit musical community unlike any other.


The Chamber Music Workshop participants have the opportunity to work in their coached ensembles with the CMW Artists-in-Residence, Resident Faculty, and members of the Conference Ensemble.
Scroll down for list of Faculty and Staff.

Pro­gram Activ­it­ies Over­view

The Cham­ber Music Work­shop [CMW] offers a wide vari­ety of pro­grams to both indi­vidu­als and pre-formed ensembles in order to help tail­or the cham­ber music exper­i­ence to each par­ti­cipant accord­ing to their exper­i­ence level, needs and areas of interest. The Work­shop is open to all strings, winds, brass, piano and sing­ers.

Typ­ic­ally, par­ti­cipants choose to par­ti­cip­ate in a full week pro­gram (which con­sists of three dif­fer­ent coached ses­sions and rep­er­toire choices) or a par­tial week pro­gram (which con­sists of two dif­fer­ent coached ses­sions and rep­er­toire choices.) If you are only able or inter­ested in par­ti­cip­at­ing in a single coached ses­sion, or would like to spread your coached ses­sions over a longer peri­od of time, you must con­tact us pri­or to sub­mit­ting your regis­tra­tion to ensure that your spe­cial regis­tra­tion is prop­erly noted and we can accom­mod­ate your schedul­ing needs.

Each par­ti­cipant has the oppor­tun­ity to request what type of coached ses­sions (see next sec­tion) they would like to par­ti­cip­ate in, or they may leave it up to CMW to determ­ine a per­son­al­ized pro­gram to suit their needs and abil­it­ies. Should you have any ques­tions about the nature of the ses­sions, please con­tact the CMW Dir­ect­or, Jes­sica Tong at jtong@​composersconference.​org. Please note that there is lim­ited space avail­ab­il­ity for the Sem­inars, so early regis­tra­tion is strongly encour­aged.

Types of Coached Ses­sions

Tra­di­tion­al Coach­ings
OFFERED: Weeks 1 and 2; morn­ings and after­noons
OPEN TO: all levels, indi­vidu­als and pre-formed
A tra­di­tion­al coach­ing ses­sion con­sists of three con­sec­ut­ive days of coach­ings with oth­er indi­vidu­als or a pre-formed ensemble on a single piece. The mem­bers of the ensemble will have an oppor­tun­ity to decide if they would like to per­form a move­ment of their work on a Musicale con­cert or mas­ter­class at the end of the three days.

Cham­ber Music Sem­in­ar—NEW TO 2017!
OFFERED: Weeks 1 and 2; on Thurs-Sat after­noons
OPEN TO: intermediate/advanced levels, indi­vidu­als only, LIM­ITED SPOTS
The CMW Artists-in-Res­id­ence will select a spe­cific piece for in-depth study in a mas­ter­class-style set­ting. All par­ti­cipants of the Cham­ber Music Sem­in­ar will pre­pare the same piece, giv­ing the par­ti­cipants the oppor­tun­ity to play and work with dif­fer­ent people each day. There will be assigned rehears­al time pri­or to the sem­in­ar fol­lowed by 2 hours of coach­ing by vari­ous fac­ulty mem­bers, to get dif­fer­ent per­spect­ives.

WEEK I PIECE: Beeth­oven Trio Op. 11 (open to cla­ri­net, viol­in, viola, cel­lo and piano)

WEEK II PIECE: Brahms Horn Trio Op. 40 (open to horn, viol­in, viola, cel­lo, piano)

Son­ata Class Sem­in­ar – NEW TO 2017!
OFFERED: Weeks 1 and 2; on Mon-Wed after­noons
OPEN TO: intermediate/advanced levels; indi­vidu­als or pre-formed duos, LIM­ITED SPOTS
This sem­in­ar is per­fect for advanced par­ti­cipants look­ing for in-depth, detailed work, with addi­tion­al focus on under­stand­ing ensemble, blend, artic­u­la­tion and pro­jec­tion in the small ensemble (duo) lit­er­at­ure. Indi­vidu­als will be placed with appro­pri­ate duo part­ners and pre-assigned a son­ata for in-depth study in a mas­ter­class set­ting with the Cham­ber Music Artists-in-Res­id­ence. Pre-formed duos may choose their own rep­er­toire. There will also be assigned daily rehears­al time pri­or to the Son­ata Class for all par­ti­cipants to fur­ther explore the mater­i­al covered dur­ing the sem­in­ar.

Pre­formed Ensemble Intens­ive Sem­in­ar– NEW TO 2017!
OFFERED: Weeks 1 and 2; on Mon-Sat after­noons **COUNTS AS 2 COACHED SES­SIONS
OPEN TO: Pre-formed ensembles only, LIM­ITED SPOTS
This sem­in­ar is per­fect for pre-formed ensembles look­ing to tackle a major cham­ber music work togeth­er. Vari­ous Cham­ber Music Artists-in-Res­id­ence will work with par­ti­cipant ensembles on their pre-assigned piece in a daily mas­ter­class set­ting. The full week ses­sion will give each ensemble an oppor­tun­ity to work on their assigned piece more in depth, as well as give each par­ti­cipant the oppor­tun­ity to study dif­fer­ent rep­er­toire as well, through observing oth­er pre-assigned ensembles. Daily rehears­als after the intens­ive sem­in­ar are encour­aged, and the ensemble intens­ive will cul­min­ate in a full piece per­form­ance class dur­ing the Sat­urday timeslot.

Cham­ber Skills Boot­camp– NEW TO 2017!
OFFERED: Week 1; Mon-Wed after­noons
OPEN TO: Indi­vidu­als, all-levels
For cham­ber music new­bies, or more exper­i­enced musi­cians simply look­ing to brush up on their ensemble skills, this sem­in­ar will delve into some of the found­a­tion­al aspects of good cham­ber music mak­ing. A vari­ety of short cham­ber music excerpts and arrange­ments will be pre-assigned to tar­get dif­fer­ent areas of pitch, rhythm, blend, artic­u­la­tion, phras­ing, cue­ing, ensemble play­ing, sight read­ing and score read­ing.

Lieder Sem­in­ar– NEW TO 2017!
OFFERED: Week 2; Mon-Wed after­noons
OPEN TO: Sing­ers and pian­ists, indi­vidu­als and pre-formed duos, LIM­ITED SPOTS
An intens­ive vocal coach­ing work­shop offered by the piano Artist-in-Res­id­ence for sing­ers and pian­ists. A lied or selec­tion of lieder will be pre-assigned to duos (or if an appro­pri­ate pian­ist is not avail­able, the Artist-in-Res­id­ence will work dir­ectly with the sing­er)

Oth­er Activ­it­ies

In addi­tion to the coached ses­sions, par­ti­cipants are able to par­ti­cip­ate in a vast range of addi­tion­al activ­it­ies dur­ing the Cham­ber Music Work­shop.

Large Ensemble & Ad Hoc Cham­ber Music Read­ings
Read­ings punc­tu­ate the Cham­ber Music Work­shop and allow par­ti­cipants to col­lab­or­ate with a broad­er range of musi­cians and in a vari­ety of music­al set­tings. Large ensemble read­ings are organ­ized and con­duc­ted by Con­fer­ence staff and are held through­out the week in the morn­ings.
Ad hoc cham­ber music read­ings are self-organ­ized dur­ing par­ti­cipants’ free time. At any hour of the day, you can hear sounds of friends try­ing out new works, from Beeth­oven and Moz­art string quar­tets and Schubert songs to 20th cen­tury wind and brass quin­tets. Par­ti­cipants are encour­aged to bring scores and to share, and the Welles­ley music lib­rar­ies are also avail­able to par­ti­cipants for scores, parts, and record­ings dur­ing the weeks of the Con­fer­ence. To help facil­it­ate organ­iz­ing your ad hoc read­ings, a con­tact list of oth­er par­ti­cipants with the same free slots will be sent out pri­or to the start of the CMW.

Mas­ter­classes- NEW TO 2017!
Mas­ter­classes will be held twice weekly on Wed­nes­day and Sat­urday morn­ings. It is an oppor­tun­ity for ensembles to per­form for peers and receive feed­back from dif­fer­ent fac­ulty mem­bers of the Con­fer­ence Ensemble besides their daily coach.

Open Rehears­als
A unique aspect of the Cham­ber Music Work­shop is that it runs con­cur­rently and sym­bi­ot­ic­ally with a Com­posers’ Pro­gram, Con­fer­ence Ensemble and the Con­tem­por­ary Per­form­ance Insti­tute, spear­headed by inter­na­tion­ally respec­ted and acclaimed musi­cians. The oppor­tun­ity to observe Con­fer­ence Ensemble rehears­als or Con­tem­por­ary Per­form­ance Insti­tute coach­ings will help to broaden your scope of cham­ber music rep­er­toire and under­stand­ing, and offer a glimpse into the artist­ic pro­cess of pro­fes­sion­al musi­cians.

Con­certs, Even­ing Lec­tures and Parties
Each even­ing of the week, there are fac­ulty con­certs, lec­tures by res­id­ent com­posers and parties to bring par­ti­cipants and fac­ulty of all three pro­grams togeth­er. The CMW Artists-In-Res­id­ence will kick off the week of con­certs on Tues­day even­ing with a trio per­form­ance, fol­lowed by a com­munity-wide cham­ber music read­ing party and recep­tion. Con­certs by the Con­fer­ence Ensemble on Wed­nes­day, Thursday and Sat­urday even­ings will explore new works by the Com­poser Fel­lows and Guest Com­posers, as well as those from the stand­ard lit­er­at­ure and lesser-known older works. The Con­tem­por­ary Per­form­ance Insti­tute Fel­lows per­form mas­ter­pieces of the 20th and 21st cen­tur­ies in a Fri­day even­ing extra­vag­an­za.

Category Full Week Resident Partial Week Resident Full Week Commuter Partial Week Commuter Special Commuter
Tuition $960 $548 $960 $548 $325
Room/Board $369 $211 $33 $20 $10
Registration/Facilities $130 $130 $130 $130 $130
Total $1459 $889 $1123 $698 $465

Full Week residents and commuters participate for seven days (Sunday through Saturday evening; checkout is on Sunday morning for residents). Full week participant tuition includes THREE COACHED SESSIONS throughout the week.

Partial week residents and commuters participate during first half (Monday-Wednesday) or second half (Thursday-Saturday) of the week. Partial week residents stay in dormitory Sunday through Wednesday nights or Wednesday through Saturday nights. Partial week participant tuition includes TWO COACHED SESSIONS throughout the week.

Special commuter options are for participants who are only able to participate in a SINGLE COACHED SESSION for the workshop.


Room/Board covers breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily for residents; lunch for commuters

Registration/Facilities Fee–All participants regardless of category pay the required Registration/Facilities fee.

Family Rate (for additional family members staying on campus): $100/day (room and board)

In order to fully register for the Chamber Music Workshop, you must complete the following:

1. Read through the Program Activities Overview and Types of Coached Session under the "Activities" sidebar to learn about the new program offerings for your coached sessions.

2. Complete the Online Registration form: Click Here. If you are unable to complete the Online Registration form, please contact us (see "Contact Us" tab above).

3. Submit your appropriate registration deposit in the mail. The CMW Early Registration Deposit (prior to March 1) is $200 per person, per week, and is non-refundable. Registration received after March 1 will be subject to a $50 late charge in addition to the tuition deposit for a total of $250.
Deposit check made out to “Composers Conference” to:

Sandy Rosenberg, Treasurer
1 Chatfield Dr. Apt. 336
West Hartford, CT 06110

4. Upon receipt of your Online Registration form and your Registration Deposit, you will receive a confirmation message from the Chamber Music Workshop. Newcomers will be contact by the Director to set up an in-person or Skype meeting.

5. After acceptance letters are sent out (no later than April 15), you must submit the balance of your fees by May 1.

Info for Newcomers

New­comers of all exper­i­ence levels are wel­come at the Cham­ber Music Work­shop! As part of your regis­tra­tion, please note your music­al exper­i­ence (recent works played, organ­iz­a­tions you per­form with, etc.) and include two ref­er­ences (teach­ers, con­duct­ors, past Work­shop par­ti­cipants, etc.) who are famil­i­ar with your play­ing.

We do require that all new­comers either sched­ule an in-per­son or Skype ses­sion with the CMW Dir­ect­or, or send in a recent video link of two con­trast­ing move­ments, in order for us to be able to accur­ately place you in ensembles and pro­grams that will best suit you dur­ing the Work­shop.

An excep­tion to this pro­cess may be made if you have already worked closely with a fac­ulty mem­ber from the Cham­ber Music Work­shop or Con­fer­ence Ensemble. In this case, you must ask that fac­ulty mem­ber to sub­mit a recom­mend­a­tion on your behalf.

We will con­tact you after we receive and review your applic­a­tion with options for your audi­tion ses­sion date and time. Early applic­a­tion is appre­ci­ated.

Chamber Music Workshop Faculty & Staff

Jessica Tong

Chamber Music Workshop Director

Adam Golka

Artist-In-Residence (Piano)

Ani Kalayjian

Artist-In-Residence (Cello)

Jan Mueller-Szeraws

Artist-In-Residence (Cello)

Conference Ensemble

John Ranck

Chamber Music Workshop Assistant Director

Timothy McFarland

Resident Faculty

Isabelle Plaster

Resident Faculty

Need more info or have questions? Call us at (508) 276-1011 or Contact Us