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Mon, Aug 03


Online Event

ESME Virtual String Camp (2020)

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ESME Virtual String Camp (2020)
ESME Virtual String Camp (2020)

Time & Location

Aug 03, 2020, 9:30 AM – Aug 15, 2020, 4:00 PM

Online Event


Attention all string students! 

We are excited to announce that this summer’s ESME String Camp has now been redesigned to take place online in a fully virtual setting as the ESME Virtual String Camp!

For the safety and health of our students we have been working hard developing a program that will allow you to have an even more rewarding, fun and enriching music learning experience this summer straight from inside of your own homes!

The ESME Virtual String Camp extends the original camp schedule to two weeks (Aug 3-15) and introduces exciting, dynamic programs newly designed through the versatile and technologically experienced skillsets of our string faculty.   These programs will guide students through the creation and application of virtual performance while they participate in virtual real-time interactive workshops, masterclasses, theory classes, music appreciation and composition classes, one-on-one lessons and chamber group coachings. 

What is the ESME Virtual String Camp? Who are the faculty and who is the ESME Virtual String Camp for?

The ESME Virtual String Camp is an exciting summer intensive chamber music program for grades 6-12 and college string players (also accepting piano students).  Our world class artistic string faculty includes musicians from the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra as well as teaching artists from The Manhattan School of Music and the Grand Valley State University faculty.  Individual students will be arranged into chamber groups based on grade/level and work with ESME on both traditional classical and ESME pop chamber arrangements.  Registration deadline is July 10th.  After July 10th students will be accepted on a case-by-case basis and based on availability.

Virtual Learning Process

Students will be taken through a tangible learning process from the ground up throughout the course of the camp.  They will be taught how to use online and virtual performance practices as powerful tools for building themselves as string players and chamber musicians. 

As part of this learning process students will have easy access to necessary equipment, software, instructional videos and lesson plans that include:

  • online performing; how to create effective virtual performances
  • using audio and music notation software
  • how to effectively play with a click track
  • how to effectively play, record and practice with fellow musicians using Acapella and other virtual performance apps and tools

Practice Templates, Orientations and Instructional Videos

All students will receive template videos weeks in advance to practice with and prepare for the camp. These templates include faculty designed click tracks and faculty video/audio recordings.  Faculty performances of every student chamber piece assigned for the camp are recorded with one of the chamber players/parts missing from the recording.  Students will receive the recording of their assigned piece that is missing their own specific part so they can practice along with that recording before the start of camp.  It’s like having a virtual side-by-side practice session with our string faculty available any time of the day!

The faculty will also hold live online orientation lessons (up to 30 min. long) with each student scheduled for the week of July 6-10.  Orientation lessons will allow students to test run their equipment and software with faculty members and familiarize themselves with the virtual process before camp begins. 

Instructional videos on setting up and running all necessary camp software and equipment will also be sent out to students prior to these orientation sessions. 

Items and Software: What do I need for the camp and is it free?

All software needed for the camp is free.  A link to the full list of both required and recommended hardware and software items for the camp (along with purchase links) can be found here.  All students will be required to have the following in order to participate in the camp:

  • At least one desktop computer or laptop with a built in or external camera
  • At least one smartphone with audio and video recording capabilities
  • At least one pair of wired bluetooth earbud earphones (no over-the-ear/on-ear “headband” headphones.  No Bluetooth, wireless headphones or Airpods due to latency).
  • Internet connection with speeds of 10mbps or higher

Depending on students age and level of experience some parents may be asked to be available on hand for the first few days of camp during livestream sessions in case the student requires any necessary assistance with his or her equipment. 

What is the daily schedule?

The ESME Virtual String Camp runs Aug 3-15 with Sunday Aug 9th off as a break day.  Student information collected during the registration process will help us to address any special student needs for scheduling specific times or any student time commitment issues.  This information will be used to provide the most effective day to day camp schedule creating additional flexibility for each individual student.  Exact scheduling will be finalized with each registered student around the registration deadline but in general students can expect up to the following amount of screen time for each day and possibly less on some days:

  • 15 minute warm-up sonic meditation (scheduled at 9:45am)
  • one 45 minute interactive workshop (scheduled anywhere between 10am and 12pm or between 1pm and 3pm)
  • one 45 minute private lesson / coaching (scheduled anywhere between 10am and 12pm or between 1pm and 3pm)
  • one 45 minute music appreciation class (scheduled anywhere between 10am and 12pm or between 1pm and 3pm)

The 12-1pm hour will be reserved each day as a camp lunch hour where students can choose to have lunch online with fellow students and faculty or offline.  Remaining time slots in between lessons, workshops and classes will be designated as practice sessions.  Faculty assisted Breakout Room practice session rooms will be open and available to students during those times but students have the option to practice offline during camp hours as well.

Camp sessions involving large groups (workshops/classes etc) begin no earlier than 9:45am and end no later than 4pm on any given day.  Scheduling of private lessons after 4pm may be available to students in certain cases.

Minimum daily time commitment required of each student to participate in the camp is 1.5 hours.

Camp Programs

Morning Warmups: “Sonic Meditation” 

  • Livestreaming warm-up sessions begin each morning with interactive playing, listening, vocal and physical exercises.
  • Students will get to experiment in real time with a variety of music theory elements from tone clusters to species counterpoint.

​Interactive Workshops

Various workshops are led each day by faculty members through live Zoom video conferencing with topics that include

  • Basics of composition and using composition software (MuseScore)
  • Improvisation; applying vocal foundations and phonetics to articulation, rhythm and phrasing
  • Practice techniques and methods for string players.
  • Recording, mixing and editing virtual performances (using Audacity).
  • Body Awareness: physical approach to instrument as an extension of the self.  Centering playing mechanics, examining temperament. 
  • Injury Prevention and Recovery: Repetitive Stress Injuries and the Path Back to Strength and Endurance.  Chronic pain from overplaying or poor technique.  Dead shoulder pronator syndrome, carpal tunnel, tennis elbow.
  • The Right Hand: how to get your instrument to speak at optimum for beginner or professional.  Maximizing Sound Potential Through Proportions (weight to speed to placement)
  • Modern Music Theory: contemporary musical concepts and how they relate to any type of music.  Developing knowledge and understanding of scales, keys, accompanying and critical listening, musical structure, beats and riffs.

Chamber Music Coachings and One-on-One Lessons

Each student receives one-on-one lessons and chamber music coachings from the ESME string faculty through livestream video conferencing. 

Each student will be provided in advance with faculty recordings of their chamber repertoire to work with in preparation for and during the camp.  Students will also work continuously throughout the camp from recordings made by one another which will also be incorporated into teacher’s daily lesson plans and final camp performance projects.

“Breakout Room” Practice Sessions

Students will rotate between the workshops and “breakout room” individual practice sessions set up through zoom video conferencing.  Breakout room sessions will include both personal and faculty assisted practice time.

Music Appreciation Classes

Engaging, livestreamed music appreciation classes open students up into the world of classical chamber music exploring chamber repertoire, history and recordings in a fun, virtual-classroom experience.  Faculty artists will get to share and deconstruct personal inspirations from the chamber music repertoire that have shaped their love and understanding of classical chamber music playing.

Masterclasses and Faculty Performances

Special live masterclasses and live performances by faculty artists will be scheduled throughout the camp. 

Individual and Chamber Group Homework Assignments

Faculty members will be on call virtually any time of the day to assist students with their after-hours homework and recording assignments.

Special Projects:

Students will work on extended projects throughout the duration of the camp

  • Composition projects
  • Virtual orchestra
  • Virtual jam session recordings

​Each special project culminates into a final product upon completion of the camp along with virtual orchestra and chamber group performances and a virtual masterclass for all chamber groups.

ESME Chamber Arrangements

​ESME chamber pop arrangements provide a unique and exciting context for students at any level to form connections between fundamentals of music making and string playing while presenting a “modern day Sukuzi” style approach utilizing modern musical exposure towards classical training.  

Tuition Cost

Student tuition/registration fee for the ESME Virtual String Camp is $400.  Tuition fees are fully refundable up until July 27.  All previous late fees are waived and those who have already prepaid the original early registration fee will be refunded the difference

Refer-A-Friend Discount Program

​The ESME Virtual String Camp now offers a discount off your tuition every time a friend you refer to the camp signs up!  Here's how it works:

Step 1.  Tell all your fellow string and piano students to enroll in the camp.

Step 2.  Make sure they list your name next to the "Refer-A-Friend" section on the application form.

Step 3.  For EVERY student who signs up listing your name you will receive a $15.00 discount off your tuition fee.  There are NO LIMITS to the amount of discounts you can receive!

What is the application process?

Step 1.

​Fill out the online registration here for “ESME Virtual String Camp”.  Or download the pdf application here.  

Step 2.

​List any known times of student unavailability during the camp for live video conference sessions in the corresponding section of the registration form.  This information is necessary for us to devise a lesson and coaching schedule plan that works best for each individual student.  Individual coaching and lesson schedules will be emailed to student after registration period ends.  

​Step 3. 

​Once we’ve received the application and tuition payment we will start scheduling orientation lesson times for the student before the start of camp.  All template videos, sheet music and repertoire assignments will be sent out after the registration deadline has passed.

The ESME Virtual String Camp is sponsored in part by Meyer Music and the Aquinas College Music Department


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