Peabody Preparatory bass trombone student Jahi Alexander describes himself as disciplined, responsible, respectful, and trustworthy—largely, he says, thanks to his involvement in Peabody’s Woodwind, Brass, and Percussion Academy.
“This program made me into a musician and the person I am today, who wants to continue to be an artist when I grow up,” says Alexander.
He’s not alone. The five Peabody Performance Academies, which aim to prepare exceptional young musicians for professional studies in music, are filled with students (grades 7–12) who consider the program the highlight of their week.
Highly motivated students like Alexander must audition for the academies, which provide individual instruction, ensembles, performance opportunities, master classes, enrichment activities, career guidance, and more. In addition to weekly classes and lessons, academy students perform with either the Peabody Youth Orchestra or the Young Artists Orchestra, and they have opportunities to interact with visiting artists like the Fidelio Quartet, Borromeo Quartet, drummer Ralph Peterson, pianist Ann Schein, and the Archipelago Project.
“The Performance Academy gives opportunities to students who are serious about their studies in music,” says Christian Tremblay, director of the Performance Academy for Strings. “It gives them an environment where they’re joined by their peers who share the same dedication, who practice hard, and who are passionate about music.”
The academies welcome intermediate and advanced students ages 12 to 17 with three to five years of prior study. In addition to strings and woodwinds, brass, and percussion, there are programs in jazz, piano, and voice.
Scholarships are available through the generous support of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. Auditions for most of the Performance Academies will be held in late August. Piano Academy auditions will be held in late May.
— Carin Morrell