Southeastern Minnesota Youth Orchestra (SEMYO) is pleased to offer several affordable week-long summer music camps for students going into grades 5-12 with experience on a string, woodwind, brass, or percussion instrument. SEMYO music camps are a great opportunity for student musicians to gain new skills, make new friends, and stay in shape over the summer while having fun playing in a musical ensemble! There is no audition required to participate in the SEMYO summer music program.
Camps include string orchestra and band camps (see descriptions below). Participants will learn in both small breakout sessions and during full band or orchestra rehearsal. In addition to music learning, camps will include additional fun activities and games, and a daily snack. Camp descriptions may be found below.
All camps meet Monday-Friday for three hours from either 9-Noon or 1-4 PM. Participants are required to attend all 5 days of the camp. If students need to be absent or arrive early/late for any days please contact SEMYO for permission.
All camps will take place at Kellogg Middle School (503 17th ST NE, Rochester). Students will enter through door 2.
All camps are taught by experienced instructors, most of whom also teach music in public school. Additional instruction is provided by guest coaches and high-school student mentors.
Each camp will include an informal performance for parents on the last day of camp. Dress for the performance is the summer music camp t-shirt. *Symphonic Strings participants will perform at a local senior center.
Register on or before May 29:
$65 for one camp
$115 for 2 camps
Register after May 29:
$80 for one camp
$135 for 2 camps
Tuition includes all camp activities, snacks, and a summer music camp t-shirt.
Tuition assistance is available for families who cannot afford tuition. To apply please register for the camp (s) you wish to attend and complete a short online application: click here for the application.
Applications are only viewed by SEMYO office staff and not the teachers.
Payment is due upon registration. Please pay online or mail payment to SEMYO, Suite 450, 1001 14th ST NW, Rochester, MN 55901.
A refund will be issued if a student cancels on or before the first day of camp.
To enroll in a SEMYO Summer Music camp, please pay tuition and register online. A link to the registration may be found below each camp description. For questions, contact Erin Haefner at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 507-218-2160.
Dive into Orchestra camp is a fun and immersive camp for enthusiastic students with one year of experience playing violin, viola, cello, or bass. This camp is ideal for students who are finishing their first year of orchestra in school or who recently started taking lessons. Students will improve in skill and gain confidence while having fun playing in a string orchestra. The goal of the camp is to reinforce proper technique and ensemble playing skills while provided an experience to play in an orchestra.
Dive into Orchestra Camp is taught by Lori Ringen-Poencet who is conductor of the SEMYO Chamber Strings Orchestra and orchestra director at Kellogg Middle School.
Prelude Strings is a string orchestra camp for students going into grades 5-9 with 2 or more years experience (or who have reached Suzuki Book 3) on violin, viola, cello, and bass. Students will learn instrument technique, ensemble playing skills, and rehearse arranged and original works for string orchestra.
Michael Sloane, conductor of the SEMYO Bravura Strings, and orchestra director at Fairbault public schools, will serve as the instructor for the camp.
Prelude Strings participants must know how to read music before enrolling in the class.
Symphonic Strings is an advanced string orchestra camp for students with 4 or more years experience playing violin, viola, cello, or bass. Students will learn advanced instrument and ensemble technique while preparing original masterworks for string orchestra. *There will be a public performance at a local senior center on the last day of camp.
Violinist and conductor James Buchan will be the instructor for the camp. Mr. Buchan has thirty years of conducting and teaching experience and was formerly a member of the New World Symphony and Hong Kong Philharmonic.
Pops Orchestra camp for Strings Players is a fun, educational camp for violin, viola, cello, and bass students going into grades 6-12 with 2 or more years playing experience. Participants will rehearse and perform a variety of classic popular and rock songs as a string orchestra while also learning improvisation and ensemble playing skills. Lori Ringen-Poencet will serve as instructor for the camp.
Limited openings are also available for pianists and percussionists with experience. Pianists and percussionists are asked to submit a short audition. Please e-mail email@example.com to request audition materials.
Dive into Band is a fun and immersive camp for enthusiastic students with 1-3 years of experience playing a woodwind, brass, or percussion instrument. This camp is ideal for students who are finishing their first year of band in school or who recently started taking lessons. The goal of the camp is to reinforce proper instrument technique and introduce students to the fundamentals of ensemble playing. *If students find the repertoire too easy, they may ask to switch to Concert Band camp during the week.
Sarah Vinzant will be the instructor for the camp. Mrs. Vinzant is the conductor of the SEMYO Prelude Winds ensemble and teaches band at Kasson-Mantorville Middle and High School.
Concert Band Camp is a camp for students on any band instrument who are going into grades 6-9 and have 2-4 years playing experience. This camp is ideal for students finishing their 2 or 3rd year of band or who are going into high school in the fall. Participants will continue building ensemble skills, learn techniques to help them improve on their instrument, and rehearse original works for the concert band. *If students find the repertoire is too difficult, they may switch to Dive into Band Camp during the week.
Aaron Cole, Band Director at Mayo School, will be the instructor for the camp.