Courses and Activities

Piano Camp Courses and Activities

General Courses
Applied Skills
Musical Explorations

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Students who join us get to play a part in fun and engaging group courses and activities. Students also have the option to choose a Musical Focus and Musical Exploration.

General Courses

All students participate in the following:

Piano Ensemble

  • A highlight of the camp, every student will be matched up by level and experience with other camp students to prepare and perform duo, trio, quartet and even larger ensemble piano pieces. 
  • Students learn coordination, listening, and balance while making friends. 
  • Each ensemble is coached by a faculty member. 
  • Every ensemble will be featured in a final concert for family and friends on Friday, August 1st, 2014, beginning at 4:00 PM.

Performance Forum

  • Students learn about various performance-related issues, including stage presence, etiquette, and listening skills. 
  • Historical differencesare discussed, such as “What makes Chopin sound different than Mozart?” 
  • This class offers an opportunity for students to perform for their peers, if they wish, at the same time receiving feedback from a master teacher.

Theory: “FUN” damentals of Music

  • In a fun and engaging way, students will learn more about how music is made, which includes identification of music elements, musical form and more. 
  • Students will learn how understanding these concepts will help the interpretation of music for performance.

Activities Showcase

  • Changing daily, students spend this time after lunch exploring new facets of music through different formats, including interactive demonstrations, crafts, and games.

Applied Skills

Each camper will choose one of the following Applied Skills on which to concentrate on during the week.

The following Applied Skills classes give the student a chance to apply his or her musical knowledge and understanding to the development of a specific skill that will in some particular way enhance the student’s pleasure and performance at the piano.

A. Collaborative Piano*
Lara Urrutia, Coordinator


  • Students enrolled in “collaborative piano” will explore the skills needed to be an accompanist and chamber music performer. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate with other instrumentalists and/or vocalists.


  • To be eligible for this Skills Class students must have successfully completed Certificate of Merit Level Seven or its equivalent. They should be entering ninth grade or higher in the Fall.

Additional Information

  • In addition to exploring the specific skills necessary to being a successful collaborative pianist, campers will receive professional coaching and gain experience through rehearsals with university-level instrumentalists and/or vocalists.
  • Topics to be covered include orchestral score reductions; exploring and adjusting to timbre differences between woodwinds, brass, strings, percussion and voice; choral score reading; musical theater accompanying practices; and collaborative stage presence and etiquette.
  • Collaborative groups will have an opportunity to perform at the final camp concert for parents and friends.

B. Adventures in Composition
Dr. Anthony Suter, Coordinator


  • The composition class will explore fascinating aspects of music creation. The course includes experimentation with diverse sound sources, working with modern as well as traditional methods of notation, and exploring principles of form, tension/resolution, character and mood.

Additional Information

  • Students enrolled in this class will write an original composition. 
  • Instruction and guidance are customized to the skill level and goals of each individual student. 
  • No background or experience in composition is requited. 
  • Students who are currently working on a composition have the option of bringing it to camp or may choose to create a brand new piece.

C. Organ and Harpsichord for Pianists
Dr. Angelica Prodan, Coordinator


  • Students enrolled in this class will explore the technique and skills needed to perform on both the organ and the harpsichord.
  • For the Organ segment, students will have a hands-on opportunity to learn a piece to perform for their parents on the great Casavant organ in the Memorial Chapel.
  • Additionally, students will have a hands-on opportunity to experience performing on a two-manual concert harpsichord.

Additional Information

  • In this class, students will explore the unique similarities and differences between the piano, organ and harpsichord.
  • Students will come to understand the historical significance of these two precursors of the modern piano.
  • This class is ideal for students who have little or no organ or harpsichord background.

D. Sight-Reading for Fun!
Erika Ramos, Coordinator


  • Sight Reading is one of the most important skills for pianists.
  • It is also one of the most fun skills, whether being able to play carols at Christmas time, or reading pop tunes for one’s friends, or finding out how a piece sounds before learning it.
  • The sight-reading class will help students improve their ability to play new music the first time they see it.

Additional Information

  • In this class you will learn tricks for making sight-reading easier.
  • The emphasis is on quick recognition of notes, rhythms, and musical patterns, and learning how to keep a steady beat.

E. Percussion Ensemble NEW! UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY!


  • Students in this class will be peeking into the fascinating world of professional orchestral percussion equipment, from drums and gongs to marimbas and maracas.
  • Not only will students see, hear and handle these instruments, they will learn to play them through percussion ensemble experience.

Additional Information

  • In a fun and lively way, this class will sharpen your rhythmic understanding and coordination as well as your sensitivity to sound.
  • In the process of manipulating unique colors and timbres, you will develop skills in rhythmic perception and performance.


Each year, the University of Redlands Piano camp offers an ever-changing array of musical explorations for students. This year, there are four explorations to choose from.

1. Music and Dance: “How Music Makes Us Move”
Working with an experienced dance and music instructor, students will learn about and better understand music’s relation to dance. Music and movement go hand in hand.

2. Music and Drama: “Lights, Music! Action! New!
Students will uncover the dramatic elements within a musical composition, studying a broad range of emotions and the ways in which a composer conveys them. Class activities include listening and discussion, as well as physical enactment and performance.

3. Music and Multi-Media: “Listening with our Eyes!”
Students will create a “Nature Symphony” on film, juxtaposing nature scenes they videotape on location around campus with the recorded piano performances of other campers. Students will learn the basics of videography, including how to handle a camera, recording, and editing.

4. Anatomy of the Piano: “An Instrument with Guts”
This is a chance to take a piano apart and see what it is made of. How does a piano produce sound, for example? You will examine all its parts, from the soundboard, strings and hammers to tiny screws and knuckles. With the guidance of a professional technician, you will have the experience of actually tuning a piano, among other fascinating hands-on activities.

Do you know the Och Tamale?
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The non-sensical Och Tamale chant was originally titled the "Psalm of Collegiate Thanksgiving."

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