Boston University Tanglewood Institute

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Boston University Tanglewood Institute
Lenox, Massachusetts
Type Summer music program for advanced high school-aged musicians
Established 1966
Enrollment 375
Campus just outside of Lenox, MA

The Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI) is a summer festival for high school musicians located in Lenox, Massachusetts, under the auspices of the Boston University College of Fine Arts.


Young Artists Orchestra[edit]

The Young Artists Orchestra is a six-week program focused on all aspects of instrumental performance, combining rigorous preparation of orchestral repertoire with an intensive program of chamber music study, solo master classes, and private lessons.

The Young Artists Orchestra prepares a wide variety of repertoire, which has included Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 2, Stravinsky’s Symphony in Three Movements, Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra, Mahler’s Symphonies Nos. 1 & 5, Holst’s The Planets, Sibelius’ Symphony No. 2, Shostakovich’s Symphonies Nos. 10 & 11 and Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet. The Orchestra presents three concerts in Seiji Ozawa Hall on the Tanglewood Main Grounds, as well as a performance in the Koussevitzky Music Shed as part of the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Tanglewood On Parade.

YAO performing Mahler's 1st symphony, August 2009
The Young Artists Orchestra in their final concert of 2009, performing Mahler's 1st Symphony in Seiji Ozawa Hall under the direction of Paul Haas

Students also receive regular chamber music coaching with artist-teachers such as Daniel Bauch, Mark Berger, Miguel Pérez-Espejo Cárdenas, Terry Everson, Ariana Falk, John Holland, David Krauss, Hyun Min Lee, Kai-Yun Lu, Laura Manko, Brian Perry, Caroline Pliszka, Samuel Solomon, and Hsin-Lin Tsai. Formal chamber music concerts are held in the Chamber Music Hall on the main grounds of Tanglewood and at the Trinity Church in Lenox. Master classes are given by guest artists such as Pamela Frank (violin), Norman Fischer (cello) Barry Tuckwell (horn), and Lynn Harrell and students take private lessons with members of the BUTI faculty and the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

Conductors for the Young Artists Orchestra have recently included Federico Cortese, James Gaffigan, Paul Haas, David Hoose, Morihiko Nakahara, and Sean Newhouse.

Young Artists Wind Ensemble[edit]

The Young Artists Wind Ensemble is a four-week program that offers students the chance to study and perform a wide variety of wind ensemble and chamber repertoire.

Under the direction of wind conductor and pedagogue David Martins and wind ensemble conductor H. Robert Reynolds, students prepare major works from the wind ensemble repertoire, presenting concerts in Seiji Ozawa Hall on the Tanglewood Main Grounds. Daily chamber music coaching with artist-teachers of the Vento Chiaro Wind Quintet and Bala Brass give students the opportunity for individual attention in chamber music repertoire. Chamber groups perform in weekly performance classes and recitals, which provide a forum for students to receive feedback from their faculty and peers. Weekly guest master classes with members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and other teachers allow students to focus on technique and solo repertoire specific to their instruments. Wind Ensemble students also receive lessons in the Alexander Technique.

Young Artists Vocal Program[edit]

The Young Artist Vocal Program of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI), for students age 15 through 18, provides a comprehensive curriculum designed to immerse young vocalists in the art of classical singing. Classes include movement, acting, diction, written and aural theory, weekly private lessons and repertoire coachings. Each student also participates in voice class twice a week, taught by Professors Phyllis Hoffman and Penelope Bitzas and/or James Demler. Dr. Ann Howard Jones leads daily rehearsals of the Young Artists Chorus. Weekly master classes are presented by guest artists and master teachers such as Phyllis Curtin, Sharon Daniels, Joy McIntyre and Joel Revzen. Students are featured in numerous performance including solo recitals, productions of opera scenes, and choral concerts in Seiji Ozawa Hall and the Koussevitzky Music Shed on the Tanglewood Main Grounds.

The Vocal Program enjoys an on-going relationship with the Boston Symphony Orchestra (BSO) and the Tanglewood Music Center (TMC). In the past, its singers have collaborated with the BSO and Seiji Ozawa in a performance of Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and with the TMC Vocal Fellows in a performance of Sometime Voices as part of the Festival of Contemporary Music with composer, George Benjamin, at the podium. Its singers have also appeared in the TMC’s opera production of Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilège under the baton of Maestro Robert Spano and this season, have performed with the TMC Vocal Fellows in the Bach Chorale Project led by the Bach scholar and conductor Craig Smith.

Young Artists Composition Program[edit]

The Young Artists Composition Program offers composers the opportunity to concentrate on composing, while taking advantage of all the resources of the summer music festival. There are daily composers' classes in orchestration, score analysis, composition techniques, creative strategies, as well as weekly private lessons and classes in theory and musicianship. Each week a section of the orchestra—winds, brass, percussion, strings—reads works-in-progress by each composer, and several pieces are selected for readings by the Young Artists Orchestra. A full evening concert showcases works composed during the summer. Selected readings and performances are recorded, providing the composer with a valuable record and learning tool. There are many additional opportunities for performances in chamber music, chorus, and other BUTI seminars and programs.

Students may attend rehearsals and performances of the Festival of Contemporary Music at the Tanglewood Music Center and have the opportunity to meet visiting composers throughout the summer—a priceless opportunity to hear firsthand the latest thoughts of some of the world's leading composers. Special events are also arranged with the Composition Fellows of the Tanglewood Music Center.

Young Artists Piano Program[edit]

The Young Artists Piano Program offers young pianists private lessons, daily master classes, and chamber music opportunities. Private lessons, taught by Boaz Sharon, enhance individual development through the study of technique, tonal quality, and repertoire. Each year, several advanced six-week students are accepted as collaborative pianists in the Young Artists Orchestra or the Young Artists Wind Ensemble, and Chamber Music Program. For these students, time is spent in the practice of instrumental accompaniment and chamber music for study and public performance, and in orchestral participation. Special classes are devoted to those interested in works for four hands and concerto repertoire. Each student in the Piano program will also be enrolled in both written and aural music theory classes. At the end of each three-week session, students are encouraged to perform at "in-house" recitals. Additional master classes are conducted by guest artists who have included such figures as Gilbert Kalish, Leon Fleisher, Andre-Michel Schub, and Emanuel Ax.

Harp Seminar[edit]

The Young Artists Harp Seminar, provides the opportunity for six weeks of intensive study with Boston Symphony Orchestra principal harpist Ann Hobson Pilot.

Students receive a one-hour private lesson with Ms. Pilot each week stressing technique and the interpretation and performance practices of the standard harp repertoire and important orchestral excerpts. Students also receive an additional weekly private lesson with Ms. Pilot's assistant. Ms. Pilot and guest artists give master classes throughout the session. Students are coached in chamber ensemble, in preparation for future auditions and competitions, and are expected to spend a significant amount of time in private practice..

Each season, harpists are chosen from the Harp Seminar to participate in the Young Artists Orchestra and/or Wind Ensemble.


Many students at the Boston University Tanglewood Institute go on to have many successes in their musical careers, including:

Coordinates: 42°21′24″N 73°17′23″W / 42.35667°N 73.28972°W / 42.35667; -73.28972