The Conservatory Program

Initiated in the spring semester of 1993, the Conservatory Program provides the highly motivated music student with an even more intensive music education than is available through the traditional CPSM curriculum. The program is designed for those students nine years and older who have a profound interest in and commitment to the study of music, who may select music as a career, and who have sufficient talent for achievement in performance to ensure success in the program.

Students who are accepted into the Conservatory Program are not only expected to devote considerable time to the study of their instrument, but also are required to register for an intensive theory/ear-training class in lieu of the traditional Musicianship Program. Conservatory Program students will also perform in recitals, attend seminars with guest speakers, and perform for a faculty jury once a year.

Auditions for the Conservatory Program will be announced each semester. A list of required audition repertoire is available in the CPSM office or from your private teacher. Please contact the CPSM office for more information.

Chamber Music Program

Chamber Music at CPSM provides the opportunity for students of all ages to play in musical ensembles of two, three, four –and sometimes more! – instrumentalists. Our staff consists of highly qualified instructors, who are experienced performers and pedagogues. All groups are coordinated according to age and musical compatibility.

Students of intermediate advancement and higher are encouraged to apply for chamber music. Instrumentation includes all winds, strings, piano percussion, and voice. Interested students should contact the CPSM office or their private instructors.

The unique aspect of chamber music – one player per part – requires that performances are performer-directed rather than directed by a conductor. Chamber music is therefore an ideal vehicle for achieving numerous musical, academic, personal, and societal objectives.

Chamber music requires cooperation. In the small ensemble, each student is required to make a clearly defined and indispensable contribution to a group effort. Responsibility, reliability, and dedication to a common cause are necessary ingredients for chamber music.

In order to interpret and perform music, students must learn to communicate effectively. By doing so, chamber music students learn the skill of problem-solving by sifting through multiple rather than singular musical possibilities. They also learn to discriminate by making reasoned judgments of these possibilities and ultimately take an active role in interpreting and shaping the music.

Chamber music students regularly perform with their ensembles at CPSM's weekly Saturday "mini-concerts" In addition to these concerts, a gala chamber music concert takes place in LeFrak Concert Hall every spring. CPSM chamber groups have also participated in concerts at CAMI Hall in New York and several members of our program have been invited to perform at various other local venues.

Chamber music is offered in the fall, spring, and summer semesters at CPSM. The fall and spring semesters provide 13 sessions each term. The summer session is flexible and can run between four and eight weeks. Classes are held weekly, and all new students must be auditioned in order to be placed in appropriate ensembles.

Jazz at CPSM

Jazz at CPSM offers students a comprehensive approach to learning the jazz repertoire. Designed to meet the needs of both beginning and experienced jazz performers, the program presents students with a systematic presentation of numerous styles – from basic blues, bebop and swing to advanced modern forms of jazz composition, including funk, and modern big band. An abundance of performance opportunities can be found at CPSM; featured ensembles include the Big Band and several small combos.

The program focuses on developing improvisational skills, sight-reading, composition, arranging and the art of performance. With the Louis Armstrong Archives located right on the Queens College campus, jazz at CPSM is steeped in tradition.

Private instruction for jazz students is available on the following instruments: saxophone, flute clarinet, trumpet, trombone, piano, guitar, and bass.

Also offered are classes in improvisation for students with little or no prior background in jazz studies.

Ensemble Opportunities

CPSM offers many performances ensembles opportunities to enrolled students. Current course listings include the following ensembles: Prep Orchestra, String Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, Wind Ensemble, Big Band, Jazz Combos, Training Chorus, Advanced Chorus, Percussion Ensemble, and Chamber Music. All ensembles perform at least once a semester and offer students the experience of sharing their musical talents in a group setting.

To encourage young performers, we offer the optionof registering for ensemble classes only (without musicianship requirement). Please keep in mind that if you choose to add private lessons to your weekly schedule, musicianship class will be required.

All students are auditioned for placement in the appropriate ensemble. Auditions are conducted at registration or at the beginning of the semester.

The Musicianship Program

Musicianship is required of every CPSM student. Students are assigned to classes on the basis of both a placement examination, which is given each semester at registration and an assessment by the Musicianship Coordinator.

Musicianship classes develop music reading skills, a keen ear, a sensitivity to musical expressiveness, and an understanding of musical form and structure all of which are a necessary part of a complete musical education. These four areas are the pillars upon which the CPSM musicianship curriculum is founded. They are introduced and nurtured by activities appropriate to the learning stage of each student through each level of musicianship.

Classes also offer a valuable supplement to private lessons. Curriculum outlines are available in the CPSM office. For those students who have completed the eight-level mandatory curriculum, an elective of Advanced Theory is offered each semester.

Dalcroze Program

The Dalcroze method was developed by the Swiss musician Emile Jacques-Dalcroze. It was his interest in rhythm as a fundamental component of music that led him to create an approach to teaching music to the very young that is based on eurythmics and body movement.

Dalcorze classes ideally provide a simulating environment in which young minds are able to experience musical expression at a most sensitive early age.

Students who have had Dalcorze training will find a natural transition to Suzuki method classes at CPSM (see "Suzuki Violin, Viola and Cello Progrrams" and "Suzuki Piano Programs"). The exposure to both rhythmic and improvisational elements of music provides an essential foundation to the process of learning a musical instrument.

There are three main areas of Dalcorze training:

Singing and ear-training

Children will explore these musical elements in an animated and inspiring manner that will train both the body and the mind.

Students must be at least two-and-a-half years of age and no more than four years age at the start of the semester in order to register for Dalcorze classes. Please consult CPSM for specific cutoff dates each term. All students will be expected to attend with an adult partner.


For more information about CPSM, please call (718) 997-3888

Queens College | 65-30 Kissena Boulevard, Flushing, New York 11367