Summer Music Programs

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Musician playing the piano at Banff Centre.

Summer Music at Banff Centre

Artistic Directors of Summer Music at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, Claire Chase and Steven Schick, have announced three new residency programs, unique among other summer educational music festivals. Ensemble Evolution, EQ: Evolution of the String Quartet, and (R)evolution: Resonant Bodies will combine a rigorous pre-professional training program with a festival atmosphere with for young musicians and emerging arts leaders, with emphasis on the participants creating their own new work. 
Under Chase and Schick's leadership, Banff Centre is commissioning an outpouring of new works that will be given their world premieres within seven weeks by the participants, alongside faculty and guest artists. Commissioned composers include George Lewis, Zosha Di Castri, Tyshawn Sorey, Sabrina Schroeder, Peter Evans, Sofia Jernberg, Vivian Fung, and Imani Uzuri. Faculty will include members of the International Contemporary Ensemble, JACK Quartet, The Parker Quartet, the Toronto-based early-music Eybler Quartet, in addition to Resonant Bodies Festival artists (among them Pamela Z, Tony Arnold, and Anthony Roth Costanzo) and a composition faculty of some of the leading voices of our time including Chaya Czernowin and George Lewis. The writer Barry Lopez will also be in residence, as well as other music writers and thinkers, such as the Canadian-British theorist-musicologist Suzannah Clark and Juilliard's Ara Guzelimian.

"Imagine 50 passionate participant musicians with an extraordinary cutting-edge faculty together making the most diverse kinds of music, spanning centuries, all in the spectacular Canadian Rockies.  That's Summer Music at Banff."

- Steven Schick

What do Summer Music Programs offer?

Daily activities will typically include—but are not limited to—lessons, faculty-led seminars, informal conversations, rehearsals, hikes, and public performances. Summer Music Programs will include cross-disciplinary collaborations with other Banff Centre artists and programs to influence the development and interpretation of new work. Programming will create rich collaborative relationships and stimulate intense experiences in music-making. 

Who should apply?

Programs are designed for musicians with active careers in ensemble playing and string quartet playing, as well as vocalists. Participants should have evidence of an emerging or established career supported by an active performing and recording history. Programs are open to individual participants, pre-formed groups, and composers from around the world.

"Collaboration and the creation of new work are the through lines of our exciting new programs at Banff this summer … resulting in an explosion of creativity, conversation, and transformation in the most inspiring setting imaginable."

- Claire Chase

Contact Us

For questions about Summer Music Programs and what we offer, please contact:


Phone: 403.762.6188

107 Tunnel Mountain Drive
Box 1020, Station 23
Banff, Alberta
T1L 1H5 Canada