Vocal/Choral Intensive (VCI)

Ages 15-18
Boston Conservatory at Berklee Vocal/Choral Intensive is a two-week summer program for high school–aged singers who are focused on classical singing or musical theater. Taught by Conservatory faculty who have years of experience training young singing artists, this is a chance for young performers to explore their abilities as solo performers and to begin to discover the many professional and educational options available to them as they move forward in their artistic lives. The Vocal/Choral Intensive curriculum is focused on strengthening students’ foundational and performance skills, through performance classes, movement and bodywork, repertoire classes, theory and sight-singing classes, and a devised acting project. Each student will receive coachings and voice lessons and experience master classes with Boston Conservatory faculty. At the conclusion of the program, students can expect to be more complete artists with stronger musicianship skills and more polished performance techniques. They will have a clearer idea of their own artistic and educational goals, and a better sense of the questions to ask. In addition, they will meet talented peers who share their passion for singing and music, and who will help each other become more purposeful and engaging storytellers through song.
June 24-July 7
Check-in Time
8 AM - 10 AM
July 7, 7:00 PM
Application fee
$50 (nonrefundable)
Registration for this program has closed.

How to Enroll

  1. Submit your application by May 1.* Begin by submitting your application online. You must prepare additional application materials that will be reviewed with your submission.
  2. Make your tuition payment by May 1.* All programs have limited capacity, so be sure to complete your full tuition payment to reserve your space in the program.
  3. Request housing. Students who are 15 years of age or older by the start of their Boston-based program are eligible to stay in on-campus housing. If you meet the eligibility requirements and have indicated that you would like to request on-campus housing, please revisit your application portal and submit a Residence Hall Agreement.

*Please note: This program has limited capacity. To participate, you must first be offered a spot in the program, then you must confirm your participation by accepting the offer and paying the tuition cost in full.


Below are classes that have been offered in the past to give you an idea of what to expect:

Sight-Singing and Ear Training

Daily work on scales, intervals, and other musical patterns as well as rhythmic exercises to strengthen the music-reading ability of each student. Individual sight-reading levels will be assessed in advance of arrival to ensure that each student is assigned to an appropriate sight-singing and ear training class level.

Music Theory

Music Theory is offered in classes according to level. It covers an introduction to basic materials of music, including treble and bass clef, key signatures and scales (major and minor), and intervals, as well as using those elements to construct simple melodies as part of first and second species counterpoint exercises. This course paves the way for young singers toward greater artistic independence.

Choral Ensemble

Daily work on a wide variety of choral repertoire will include music of the Baroque, Classic, and Romantic eras, and of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Each rehearsal will begin with both physical and vocal warm-ups, and will emphasize individual musicianship, critical listening skills, vocal technique, and style. The work of the chorus will be showcased in the Grand Finale concert of the program.

Vocal Performance Class

All aspects of solo vocal performance are addressed in these classes. The course focuses on vocal technique, dramatic and musical interpretation, and the physicality and characterization of the piece. Both classical and musical theater repertoire will be studied in these classes. Students are expected to bring music that they have already prepared, and everyone will be assigned and will learn new repertoire during the program.

Repertoire Seminar

In this seminar, students will be introduced to repertoire for the young classical or musical theater singer and discover unusual and effective pieces that suit each performer. Singers will gain a better understanding of the technical challenges for pieces in each style, as well as learn more about “what not to sing” and why. Singers will leave this class with a strong sense of what to choose to sing that will both give them an appropriate technical challenge but also show off what is unique and special about them as a singer and performer.

Voice Lessons and Vocal Coachings

Each Vocal/Choral Intensive student will be assigned a voice teacher and will receive weekly private voice lessons. Vocal technique, diction, and interpretation, as well as techniques for learning new repertoire, will be addressed in the lessons. In addition, students will be scheduled for four private coachings where musical skills will be reinforced, and use of text and phrasing as well as stylistic issues will be addressed.


The singing actor has many challenges: singing while acting naturally, singing while moving stylistically, singing while performing choreography, moving slowly while the voice is moving quickly, or moving quickly while the voice is moving slowly. The use of exercises, improvisation, and storytelling helps young singers build confidence in their ability to make decisions about character, objective, obstacle, and strategy. Through this work, performers will jointly build a newly created musical/theatrical scene, bringing text to life through group and solo work, dancing, and song.


Below is a sample schedule.

8 AM–9 AMBreakfast
9 AM–11:45 AMCheck-in
12:30 PM–1:30 PMLunch
1:30 PM–3 PMPerformance class
3 PM–4 PMVoice/Speech
4 PM–5 PMOrientation
5:30 PM–6:30 PMDinner
6:30 PM–7:30 PMChoir
8 AM–9 AMBreakfast
9 AM–10 AMStageworks
11 AM–11:45 AMTheory
12:30 PM–1:30 PMLunch
1:30 PM–3 PMPerformance class
3 PM–4 PMVoice/Speech
4 PM–5 PMHistory of Great Singers
5:30 PM–6:30 PMDinner
6:30 PM–7:30 PMChoir
8 AM–9 AMBreakfast
9 AM–10 AMStageworks
11 AM–11:45 AMTheory
12:30 PM–1:30 PMLunch
1:30 PM– 3 PMPerformance class
3 PM–4 PMVoice/Speech
4 PM–5 PMLearning music boot camp
5:30 PM–6:30 PMDinner
6:30 PM–7:30 PMChoir
8 AM–9 AMBreakfast
9 AM–10 AMStageworks
11 AM–11:45 AMTheory
12:30 PM–1:30 PMLunch
1:30 PM–3 PMPerformance class
3 PM–4 PMVoice/Speech
4 PM–5 PMStaff recital
5:30 PM–6:30 PMDinner
6:30 PM–7:30 PMChoir
8 AM–9 AMBreakfast
9 AM–10 AMStageworks
11 AM–11:45 AMTheory
12:30 PM–1:30 PMLunch
1:30 PM–5:00 PMStudio meetings
8 PM–9 PMDinner
8 PM–9 PMChoir
11 AM–11:45 AMPerformance class
1 PM–2 PMBoston Conservatory audition
6:30 PM–7:30 PMHarbor boat cruise

Schedule subject to change.


General Requirements

This program is for high school students ages 15–18 who are serious about classical or musical theater singing

Participants must possess a proficient level of English to enroll in this program. We do not require proof of English language proficiency (e.g., TOEFL, IELTS, Duolingo) as part of the enrollment or application process; however, you are expected to have a sufficient command of the English language to understand class material and assignments.

Required Materials

  • Two clean copies of solo music you are prepared to perform and work on with coaches and teachers
  • Up-to-date hard copy of your complete repertoire list
  • Device to listen to an MP3 of accompaniment (phones are acceptable)
  • Device to record your lessons and coachings (phones are acceptable)
  • Clothing that is comfortable to move around in. You may be lying on the floor, upside down, and moving around for the movement part of the day.
  • Two nice outfits to perform in for the solo recitals, as well as a combination of black and/or white, solids, or prints for the final concert.
  • Performance-appropriate and comfortable shoes
  • Yoga mat or large towel
  • Water bottle
Program-Specific Details

Application Details

This program is application-based and requires the preparation and submission of additional application materials along with your registration form. Once your materials are reviewed, you will be notified of your decision via email. Applications will be processed on a rolling basis until the program has reached capacity. Due to limited availability, you must accept your offer and pay tuition in full in order to reserve your spot in the program.

Students interested in applying to this program should prepare the following materials:

  • Two video recordings of contrasting classical or musical theater songs with piano accompaniment (live piano or piano track). If musical theater pieces are presented, one of them must be a classic-era selection.
  • Please do not submit recordings of live musical theater shows.
  • A video recording of a vocalise showing your lowest comfortable note and your highest comfortable note. This can be a simple scale or series of scales that show your range. Choose any vowel that feels comfortable and easy for you. 
  • A repertoire list of solo musical pieces you have worked on in the last two years, and a description of your experience with choral singing.
  • A description of any music theory or sight-singing classes you have taken.

Video recording submission guidelines:

  • Sound quality is important and the singer must be clearly audible and visible.
  • Videos can be made at home or studio recordings. Smart phone quality is sufficient.
  • Recordings of the performances should be recent (within the last year).
  • Please ensure that your video submissions are easily accessible and not set to private.
  • Instructions on how to submit your materials are available in the online application portal. Create your account to begin your application.

Course Placement

Over the summer, you will meet virtually with VCI faculty to determine placement in music theory and sight-singing courses. 

Once You've Enrolled

The Berklee Summer Programs Team is excited that you've taken the first step! Now that you've enrolled, here's what to know, to be sure you're prepared before and after you check in for the experience of a lifetime.

What to do first?

Complete These Tasks by June

Prepare to Arrive and Check In

Access the Summer Programs Help Center

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