Music in Schools Initiative

Morse Summer Music Academy

The Morse Summer Music Academy is a free music program for intermediate and advanced music students in the band, choir, and/or orchestra programs in the New Haven Public Schools. Over the course of four weeks, students are taught and mentored by a team of music educators from the New Haven Public Schools and Teaching Artists from the Yale School of Music. This program offers opportunities for growth in musicianship, technique, and personal achievement.

During a typical Morse Summer Music Academy season, family and friends are invited to attend concerts featuring Morse Academy students. Performances take place weekly in Morse Recital Hall and in such nearby locations as Yale Cross Campus, Beinecke Plaza, the Yale University Art Gallery, and the New Haven Free Public Library. The Morse Academy concludes with a final concert in Morse Recital Hall. 

Morse Academy students participate in:

  • large ensembles
  • seminar instruction
  • sectional rehearsals
  • private coachings
  • chamber music
  • pop-up chamber music concerts across New Haven
  • a field trip to the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival/Yale Summer School of Music


Special Thanks

The Morse Summer Music Academy is made possible through a generous endowment established by Enid and Lester Morse (Yale College ’51) and is offered free of charge to students in the New Haven Public Schools.

The friendships formed with the teaching artists and other students gave our child a sense of belonging.

Program Details

Application Form

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The Morse Summer Music Academy is open to all New Haven Public School students entering 4th-12th grades. The program is available for woodwind, brass, string, percussion, and choir students. Applicants for the Academy must exhibit musical accomplishment, enthusiasm, and work habits conducive to an intensive music instruction program, including at least a "B" average on their NHPS report card, full participation in their school's music program (if available), and teacher approval. Interested students meeting these criteria may apply below. Please note that the choir candidates accepted should commit to a year-long participation in Morse Chorale.

Registration Forms

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To confirm their attendance, accepted students must submit their forms before Morse Academy begins. Students are not registered until these forms have been completed in full, submitted, and received. Forms will be received in person, electronically at, or by mail to 98 Wall St., New Haven, CT, 06511.  


Applications + Auditions


After submitting an application, interested students will be invited to attend an audition. (Students who participate in the CMEA Southern Regional Festival do not need to audition.)

Band Audition Requirements:

  • six scales (one octave): B-flat major, C major, F major, D major, G major, and a chromatic scale
  • a short solo piece chosen by the student
  • a piece to be sight-read

Choir Audition Requirements:

  • a short solo song of their choice
  • students will repeat different vocal exercises
  • a piece to be sight-read (sung) 

Strings Audition Requirements:

  • two scales (one octave): C major and G major
  • a short solo piece chosen by the student
  • a piece to be sight-read