accademia john sidtis

August 15 - 22, 2015

Advanced players are invited to apply for this special program, held during Early Music Week at Pinewoods.



Modeled on the late-16th-century Italian gatherings of a group of skilled peers working together to develop new ideas, this high-level intensive is for advanced players and singers. We will focus on music from the High Renaissance and Early Baroque, and work towards a mini-concert at the culmination of the week. Only players and singers with advanced reading skills and solid technique will be accepted. Music will be selected for the instrument mix registered and will be sent out in advance. We will work all together on a large piece or pieces, but also in break-out groups on smaller pieces.

The members of the Accademia will work in three focused daily classes:

  • In the morning class, you will work with others on your same instrument at a high level.
  • First afternoon class will be with Sarah Mead and Michael Barrett, all voices and instruments together.
  • In the second afternoon class, singers will join the Chorus with Michael, instrumentalists will work with Sarah and Lisa. Brasses and double-reeds may choose to attend Loud Band at this time.

The second morning period will be left free so that members of Accademia may enjoy the English country dance classes that help to make CDSS Early Music Week at Pinewoods unique among summer workshops.

All classes with viols will be held in enclosed spaces to minimize the effects of the inevitable humidity of our pond-side setting.

-- Sarah Mead and Lisa Terry, Program Co-Directors

Lisa Terry will be the Viol Maven for Early Music Week this summer. She'll have a supply of nylon strings to sell, a few Sensicore strings to lend, and the expertise to get your pegs turning and your soundposts upright. See the Viol Maven each day during breakfast and lunch to make an appointment before first morning or afternoon class. Please read Viol Survival Tips, and put them in practice BEFORE camp!


The Accademia is intended for players interested in working on their ensemble skills and fluent with voice or on all instruments in a family, and able to:

  • sight read all but the most virtuosic music
  • play most of the ensemble repertory at an appropriate tempo without getting lost
  • apply stylistic elements (articulations, bowings, ornaments, etc.) appropriately

If Sarah, Michael and/or Lisa is not already familiar with your playing, please include the name and contact information of a teacher who has worked with you recently. You may also submit a video or recording to support your application if you feel it would help us to assess your qualification for the program.

To register, please fill out both the regular form, paying your deposit, and this Special Form for the Accademia.

Please clearly indicate if you would like to attend Early Music Week, if you did not get a space in the course.


In addition to the scholarships available through CDSS, summer scholarships are offered by Early Music America (deadline: April 15) and The Viola da Gamba Society of America (deadline: April 15).

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