NCCMI Frequently Asked Questions


What is the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute?

The North Carolina Chamber Music Institute (NCCMI) is an exciting program which provides Triangle area music students the opportunity to enrich their playing and learning experiences through small group ensembles. The advanced study of chamber music is achieved through coaching sessions by a professional confederation of area professionals (including North Carolina Symphony members), student-led rehearsals, public performances, master classes and workshops. It is open to Strings, Pianists and Woodwinds, Teachers and students (generally aged 8-18) work together to produce excellent performances of the great chamber music works. It is not affiliated with any university or college.


When will the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute take place?

NCCMI will take place from October through April. Each group is guaranteed 8 sessions with coaches each semester for a total of 16 times in the season PLUS a matching number of rehearsals. Times and locations for coachings will be organized by the individual coaches and groups, with the option of meeting at Edenton Street United Methodist Church, our community partner. Each group will schedule one student-led rehearsal for each coaching session, possibly combined in one longer session. The length for each element coaching or rehearsal will be determined by the coaches and director based on age and maturity level of the group. Some groups may decide to have extra sessions, especially when preparing for advance performances and competitions.


Why is the time and location different for every group?

A key element of the Institute is the individualized approach which enables each group to make a maximum amount of progress during the course of the year, based on age, experience and practical factors like individual scheduling concerns. Coaching sessions will take place in the Raleigh/Cary area - either at Edmonton Street Methodist Church or at a location determined by the coaches and parents. Students must be committed to attend the scheduled dates, since they are individually responsible for their part in the ensemble.


Who are the coaches for the Institute?

The coaches include members of the North Carolina Symphony and experienced area college professors and performers. In general, each group will have two coaches in alternating sessions.


What is the cost of tuition for the Institute?

See THIS LINK for current year tuition and fee details. Tuition for the year is due upon acceptance into the program, unless other arrangements have been made. Early Bird Admissionhas a discount off the program fee. There is also a non-refundable registration fee for all students.  This includes 16 coachings, additional student-led rehearsals, one performance review, one formal recital, master classes and workshops. In partnership with Chamber Music Raleigh students are invited to attend CMR concerts, free of charge, as long as a member of the NCCMI staff accompanies them.


What are the student’s obligations?

Students must be willing to make their NCCMI commitment a priority.The schedule is carefully crafted for each individual group. Once set, students should not try to change it. We expect professional level promptness and preparation. Students must perform in one performance review, one master class or workshop, one outreach concert and one final concert. Outreach concerts include retirement facilities, Ovations (prior to the NCS performances), Community Music School, etc. Having performance experience is an essential part of the learning process for young musicians, particularly in chamber music.


What are master classes and competitions?

In a master class, a group performs in front of an audience, after which a master teacher will discuss the performance and give professional advice. Master classes will be sponsored by NCCMI, Chamber Music Raleigh and other organizations. Student groups must audition to be invited to perform but are always encouraged to audit these classes free of charge. A Workshop will involve enjoyable sight-reading with staff, audition preparation practice or a specific instrumental focus.


Why play chamber music?

Chamber Music develops the ability to solve complex problems, work as a team, increase confidence and personal skills and provides opportunities for performance and competitions.


What else does NCCMI have to offer?

Awards are given at the end of each year, including GOLD Award for students completing 3 years in the program and Community Engagement Award for students who perform in 3 or more Outreach Programs during the year.


Are auditions required each year?

Auditions are required for initial admission to the NCCMI program. Returning students who apply by the Early Bird Deadline of June 1 are automatically accepted. These students will still need to request a Playing Interview timeslot, for best ensemble placement in the next year. All students should apply as described below.


What about competitions?

Opportunities for competitions include the Federation of Music Clubs, Music Teachers National Association, WDAV and the Fischoff National Competition.


How do I apply to the North Carolina Chamber Music Institute?

From the menu at the top of this page, click on the "Registration and Audition Forms" tab, and select "Step 1: Registration/Audition Form" and follow the instructions.  Once accepted, go to the menu at the top of this page, click on the "Registration and Audition Forms" tab, and select "Step 2: Form to be downloaded after acceptance, and payment of program fee." Both student and parent/guardian must sign and send this in to NCCMI, along with the tuition payment (and tee-shirt fee, if requested) to 3131 Ashel St., Raleigh, NC 27612 within 10 days of acceptance.