The Aspen Music Festival and School is open to musicians of any age and at any stage of their career. However, the intensity of the professional performance schedule and the exacting standards of quality make Aspen most appropriate for the serious, dedicated musician. The age restriction applies to students under the age of 18 as of the program start date for Full Session / Half Session I.
AMFS does not have housing for students under the age of 18. Students under the age of eighteen must be accompanied and supervised in Aspen by a parent or guardian. Guardians cannot be AMFS faculty or students. Additionally, students under the age of 18 and their guardians must find their own housing off campus. Students living off campus are responsible for purchasing their own meals or a meal plan through the AMFS Dining Hall. For resources related to finding housing in Aspen, see Off-Campus Housing.
All students 18 and older play in orchestra. Students under the age of 18 in the Orchestra/Instrumental program do not play in orchestra but have the opportunity to receive two 60-minute private lessons each week as well as engage in chamber music and additional performance opportunities including classes and recitals.
Students of all ages are welcome to audition for the Aspen Chamber Music program upon arrival at Aspen. Students are placed with others of similar ability who are assigned to the same orchestra. Students under age 18 will be placed with other students of similar age and ability who are not in orchestra. It may be recommended that younger or less-experienced players focus on private study or specially designed and limited exposure to chamber music. For more information, see AMFS Chamber Music.
Students have a great deal of freedom while attending the Aspen Music Festival and School. It is expected that those admitted under eighteen must be responsible, mature, and self-motivated. There is limited social programming offered throughout the summer. Students must have the ability to structure their rehearsals, classes, and practice times without supervision. If supervision is required at any time, it must be provided by the parent/guardian.