Community Music Program

A cooperative effort between West Chester University and West Chester Area School District providing music lessons to students 10 or over. Interested parties may contact Dr. Henry Grabb, Program Coordinator via email ( If you are unable to communicate via email, please call Dr. Grabb's office at (610) 436-2224. If there is no answer, you may leave a message for him through the main music office number (610) 430-4177.


We are pleased to announce our 2022 WCU Summer Music Camps. All 2022 summer camp registrations will take place online – please visit each camp’s webpage (via the drop-down tabs below) for more specific registration details. We expect our online registration to open after the new year.

Please check out our summer camp options below!

WCU Elementary School and Middle School Summer Music Camps

Monday, June 27, 2022 through Friday, July 1, 2022; 9am to 12pm daily

Tentative Finale concert: Friday, July 1, 2022; 12:15pm

Elementary School Summer Music Camp Brochure

Middle School Summer Music Camp Brochure

The Elementary School Summer Music Camp and The Middle School Summer Music Camp offer large ensemble and small ensemble performance opportunities for band and orchestra students. Students will receive instruction from some of the region's finest educators and performers. Daily faculty recitals allow students to see professional musicians perform in an informative and engaging setting.

Learn More about the Elementary School Summer Music Camp.

Learn More about the Middle School Summer Music Camp.

Featured Camp video

WCU High School Summer Music Institute

Monday, July 11, 2022 through Saturday, July 16, 2022

Tentative Finale Concert: Saturday, July 16, 2022; 5:15pm

The High School Summer Music Institute is for students currently (2021-2022) in grades 9 through 12. Every student receives two 30-minute private lessons on their primary instrument or voice. Students will perform in a variety of ensembles, including wind ensemble, string orchestra, vocal ensemble, and various chamber ensembles. Students will also participate in music theory classes and sectional rehearsals/masterclasses. The Institute’s faculty consists primarily of WCU Wells School of Music professors, all of whom are active performing artists in the Philadelphia region.

Learn more about the High School Summer Music Institute.

See our High School Summer Music Institute and Summer Jazz Camp Brochure for more details.

High School Sumer Music Institute video

  Summer Jazz Camp

Sunday, July 17, 2022 through Friday, July 22, 2022

The Summer Jazz Camp is designed for advanced middle school and all high school students. Participants will explore jazz improvisation, arranging, orchestration, jazz history, and performance techniques. Visiting artists as well as the WCU faculty will perform and conduct masterclasses on various subjects. All participants will need to have a knowledge of scales, be able to read music, transpose, and be proficient on an instrument.

Learn more about the Summer Jazz Camp.

See our High School Summer Music Institute and Summer Jazz Camp Brochure for more details.

Summer Jazz Camp video

  Summer Leadership and Marching Band Camp

July 23 – July 24, 2022 (Leadership Training) / July 25 – July 28, 2022 (Marching Band Camp)

Lead by nationally acclaimed experts (including: Tim Lautzenheiser, John Villella, Thom Hannum, Andrew Yozviak, and Heidi Sarver) the camp has tracks for drum major, color guard, percussion, twirling, and a leadership marching Band. This is an opportunity to experience a group dynamic where everyone is committed to excellence and a program where the staff will provide detailed instruction working with contemporary music and drill.

The Director and Staff sessions offered include: Rehearsal techniques, organization and administration, leadership, drill writing, conducting, literature, band pedagogy, and technology. Graduate and Act 48 credits are available.

For further information, visit


The West Chester University Wells School of Music offers two keyboard performing competitions to encourage and celebrate excellence in piano and organ performance.

Pre-Collegiate Piano Competition

The West Chester University Annual Pre-Collegiate Piano Competition, now it its 32nd year, strives to provide students ages 9-18 with performing opportunities and raise the standard of excellence of young pianists. This is a national competition with no geographic restrictions. There are three age groups with up to five cash prizes awarded in each group. Information regarding repertoire requirements, award amounts, and how to apply will be found below.

The Saturday, April 2, 2022 competition will be followed by a Recital and Awards Presentation on Sunday, April 10, 2022 at 3:00 PM in the Ware Family Recital Hall and will include performances by the first, second, and third place winners in each age group and must be attended by all Honorable Mention winners. Absences in either category will result in cancellation of the award.

Repertoire Requirements

  1. Two pieces from the standard solo literature (Baroque, Classical, Romantic, 20th or 21st Century)
  2. The two pieces must be from different periods and contrasting in style
  3. Beginner level pieces are not acceptable
  4. In the 16 -18 age group, a third piece may be added to meet the minimum 20 minute playing time
  5. Pieces requirement anything to be put inside the piano or on the strings are not acceptable
  6. No arrangements

Competitions Guidelines

  • A $100 non-refundable entry fee is required
  • Music must be performed from memory
  • Previous first place winners may reapply only in the next age group
  • Previous entrants may reapply, but not with the same pieces
  • No audition recordings required
  • Applicants must supply one publisher’s copy of each of their pieces for the judges
  • No photocopies allowed
  • Applicants must be within given age ranges as of April 2, 2022 and may not be in college


16-18 Years Old
  • 1st Place - $1,000
  • 2nd Place - $500
  • 3rd Place - $250
  • Honorable Mention - $100
13-15 Years Old
  • 1st Place - $300
  • 2nd Place - $200
  • 3rd Place - $100
  • Honorable Mention - $30
9-12 Years Old
  • 1st Place - $100
  • 2nd Place - $75
  • 3rd Place - $50
  • Honorable Mention - $20

*Up to two Honorable Mention Awards in each age group will be given at the discretion of the judges.

How to Apply

Register online and pay with a credit card.


Download and complete the application form found here . Mail (postmarked by February 25, 2022) your completed application form and $100 application fee (check made payable to West Chester University) to:

Joan Stalford
Re: Piano Competition
Swope Music Building
West Chester University
817 South High Street
West Chester, PA 19383

For additional information, please contact Joan Stalford, Administrative Assistant for the Departments of Ensembles and Conducting, Instrumental Music, and Vocal and Keyboard Music, at

International Organ Competition

The International Organ Competition is open to organists ages 15-25, awards 4 cash prizes in two ages groups, takes place annually in mid-May, and draws applicants from Europe, Asia, Canada and the United States.

Learn More about the International Organ Competition

For further information, email Anita Greenlee.


The WCU High School Honors Percussion Ensemble (HSHPE) is a select ensemble comprised of some of the Greater Philadelphia region's finest high school percussionists. Auditions will be held November 17th, and rehearsals take place on Sundays (2pm-3:30pm) from January 5th through April 19th. The HSHPE performs on the WCU Percussion Ensemble's spring concert on April 21st, and additional performance opportunities (e.g., the Percussive Arts Society Pennsylvania Day of Percussion) will be considered. Dr. Ralph Sorrentino serves as the HSHPE’s artistic director, and Professor Brent Behrenshausen conducts the ensemble.

Application  (must be postmarked by January 7th)

For further information, email Ralph Sorrentino.

Percussion Ensemble


If you graduated from one of the programs in the School of Music at WCU, we would love to hear what you are doing! Use our online form to update your alumni information.


For our alumni the camaraderie and standing ovations live on in the Alumni Criterions Jazz Ensemble and the Alumni Marching Band. We are proud to be associated with their strong tradition of outstanding musicianship. We appreciate their ties and support - and look forward to their next performance!

To join, connect with, or attend a performance of the Alumni Marching Band, please visit the WCU Alumni Bands website.

To join, connect with, or learn more about the Alumni Criterions Jazz Ensemble, please visit the WCU Criterions Reunion Facebook group.

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