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Welcome to The Castleman Quartet Programs (CQP)!

♦  A new scholarship opportunity!  ♦
All participants who are claimed as dependents in a family
earning $75,000 or less (according to IRS form 1040)
can attend a 3-week session for only a $500 deposit.

Founded by Charles Castleman in 1970, this unique summer program will be in Fredonia, NY and McMinnville, OR in 2017.

At the Castleman QUARTET Program in Fredonia, each 7-week participant learns “from scratch” and performs one concerto movement, 2 contrasting Bach movements, or the equivalent along with two string quartets and a Sonata– ideal preparation for college auditions or solo competitions.  There are analogous opportunities for 3-week participants.  Subject to availability, a week of Sonata study occurs in the final week of the 7-week session

At the Castleman QUINTET Program in McMinnville, each 3-week String participant will learn “from scratch” and perform one concerto movement, 2 contrasting Bach movements, or the equivalent along with a complete Piano Quintet.  Each of the four 3-week Piano participants will collaborate with the String players in his/her group and perform a complete Piano Quintet.

CQP’s schedule is partially structured, offering a sample organized workday, and partially unstructured to allow each participant to discover the most effective conditions for his/her optimum progress.  Each ensemble, assembled and assigned by Charles Castleman, remains intact for the duration of the session, with all the CQP faculty involved in teaching verbal and non-verbal communication and the principles of Group Dynamics, and mediating problem resolution.

Caeli Smith, “Roving Reporter” for NPR’s From The Top wrote an apt description of her experience at QP for violinist.com, available at “http://www.violinist.com/blog/caeli/20088“.


Given that only 32 participants are accepted in a given season, CQP’s success rate is unique.  CQP counts among its past participants forty-six alumni in groups with a permanent university residency. There are twenty-two active professional chamber groups with more than one CQP alumnus/member, and one hundred and eight such groups with one CQP alumnus.  Eighty-six orchestras have at least one principal player who attended CQP.

CQP alumni are in groups featured on the covers of Vogue and Strad magazines, and in a group sponsored by Thomastik (makers of Vision, Infeld and Dominant strings).  There is a VP of Deutsche Bank, a doctor who discovered a cure for a previously always fatal genetic disease, and an executive of Legal Aid in the San Francisco area.  There are directors and writers of such TV shows as “Seinfeld” and “Desperate Housewives”, producers for the most important recording companies, and more than twenty directors of their own arts programs.

CQP’s record of success is self-perpetuating.  Its alumni are excited to help younger colleagues who shared the CQP experience.  As students at Harvard & Yale, CQP alumni have made such a mark in the past that almost 100% of today’s applications from CQP alumni are accepted.