Aspen Music Festival And School

About the School

The Aspen Experience

The Aspen Music Festival and School is the country’s premier summer music festival, offering a combination of intensive one-on-one instruction and professional performance experience.

Each student coming to Aspen steps into an extraordinary musical world of unparalleled depth and breadth. It encompasses more than 650 students, five orchestras, opera, a robust offering of chamber music studies, master classes, lectures, and more.

Along with private instruction, many students rehearse and perform major orchestral repertoire side-by-side with their teachers and/or with principal players from major orchestras, including those of New York, Vienna, Los Angeles, St. Louis, San Francisco, Cleveland, Chicago, and Philadelphia. Orchestras perform weekly or accompany one of two professional operatic productions. Soloists and conductors vary by week and are among the world’s most revered classical musicians.

Students in all programs can attend more than 400 performances, master classes, lectures, and panels; and, as part of the AMFS community, they make connections that can last a lifetime.

Aspen is open to musicians of any age and at any stage of their career. However, the average age of an Aspen student is 22. The intensity of the professional performance schedule and the exacting standards of quality make Aspen most appropriate for the serious, dedicated musician.

Join Aspen for its seventy-second season, and experience what has made the Aspen Music Festival and School a place of artistic and personal transformation since 1949.

Summer 2021

DUE TO SAFETY CONCERNS ABOUT THE ONGOING CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC, THE ASPEN MUSIC FESTIVAL AND SCHOOL HAS MADE THE DIFFICULT DECISION TO REDUCE THE EDUCATIONAL AND ARTISTIC OFFERINGS FOR THE 2021 SEASON. With modifications in programming to ensure the safety of our students, faculty, and staff, enrollment will be limited to those already admitted and enrolled in the 2021 class. Any available positions will be filled with select students who were enrolled in the 2020 class. We will not be accepting applications this season. 

Teaching and Performance Venues

The Aspen Music Festival and School is headquartered at the pastoral 38-acre Bucksbaum Campus located just outside of Aspen among groves of aspen trees, fields, and ponds. In 2013, the AMFS celebrated the opening of the newly redeveloped Campus with two new rehearsal/performance halls, percussion facilities, and practice rooms. Brand new teaching studios were dedicated in 2014, and, in 2016, a third rehearsal/performance hall, dining facilities, additional teaching studios, and administrative offices were unveiled.

For a full list of performance and teaching venues, visit the Venues page.

Aspen by the Numbers
Students More than 650, from approximately 40 states and 40 countries
Ages Approximately 10 to 37, average age is 22
Artist-faculty 130 from nearly every major U.S. conservatory, music school, and orchestra
Guest artists 100+
Orchestras 5
Operas 2 Productions
Performance Venues Benedict Music Tent, Harris Concert Hall, Wheeler Opera House, and other smaller venues around the town of Aspen
Total events in eight weeks More than 400
Elevation 7908 ft. above sea level
Average daily high in the summer 76 degrees

Robert Spano, Music Director

Alan Fletcher, President and CEO