We take great care in organizing and placing our Prelude camp and festival participants so that each ensemble gels and is ripe with personal experiences to challenge each other and create an unforgettable place in time that will go with them for years to come. Unique to Jacksonville, and to many other metropolitan areas, Prelude goes beyond orchestral training and focuses on pure chamber music in small ensembles. Nowhere else will you find this kind of style, instructor talent and diverse experience presented in a way that any musician, whether new or masterfully experienced, young or old, can enjoy it, play it, and be inspired through this most engaging and rewarding time together. Opportunities like this take hard work, loyalty and talent with a boatload of passion for teaching and sharing what few will ever encounter in a lifetime. The festival makes friends forever and even some professional chamber musicians! Passion is such a simple idea, and yet is different for everyone, but really elevating it among so many goals and competing interests is the most amazing thing I’ve ever witnessed.
My experience at Prelude Chamber Music Camp began when I was a young teenager. My grandmother, determined to give me a positive experience with violin, paid for me to attend -- I, skeptical but willing to give it a try. I loved it so much that I returned the next four years. The raw exposure to the sheer joy of creating music with others was incredible. Nowhere else would I have gained the experience of working in a chamber music group, performing our pieces everywhere -- from the end-of-camp concert to retirement homes for the elderly. We met such a range of wonderful musicians and music theorists: I can honestly say that I gained an appreciation for music that I could never have gained without these wonderful people. Our musical exposure ranged from classical to folk to modern; from string orchestra practices to musical composition and even bell choirs to perfect our sight-reading skills. The music theory I gained from my time there I still use; the understanding I gained was not just of the joy of playing music but also of the beauty of understanding the way music works at a more technical level. It's absolutely an experience I would recommend. Run -- don't walk -- to sign your kid up for this program. They will thank you.
I taught at Prelude Chamber Camp since the beginning for five years. And I am astonished with all of the amazing progress and developments over the last 10 years. It has been like a wonderfully supportive summer family. I wish Prelude Chamber Camp another successful 20 years!
I was a camper at Prelude throughout my childhood and adolescence and it was always the highlight of my summer. I made great friends and was challenged musically every day. This is a truly great cause that I plan to support throughout my adult life. Even though I was and never will be a good enough musician teach, this is the next best thing.
I have been involved with Prelude Chamber Music Camp as both a parent of a child attending and as a teacher of a child attending. Wearing both hats, I have seen my students and my own children grow, not just musically, but in confidence, self esteem, AND in desire to play their instruments. These are all wonderful qualities. The latter is so exciting because children develop a purpose to practice and it takes their playing to a new level. I have seen this in my most beginning to my most advanced students. They all take away an enthusiasm for their instrument that allows them to progress throughout the year.
Some of my greatest and most inspiring childhood memories were of Prelude Chamber Music Camp! It was not only a friendly and loving environment, but the musical variety and opportunities kept me busy in the most wonderfully satisfying way. I also had the chance to make music with mentors and colleagues alike. They are so great at catering the camp to each and every unique student's needs.
I love watching the transformation that happens in one week to so many of our campers. Especially beginners but even our advanced students often begin their first day with uncertainties, but by the time we get to the last day, are glowing from having made music with new friends.
Chamber music is cooperation, listening, counting, fun, all of the above! All things that kids can learn at Prelude Chamber Music Camp. As a longtime faculty member, I am often amazed at the progress some kids make from the very first reading rehearsal to the performance at the end of the week. It has been a pleasure working with these kids and with the other excellent faculty at Prelude.
This group gives valuable opportunities to string musicians, teaching skills, musicianship, and the pleasure of working together toward something beautiful. The joy of being free to play one's instrument and not be teased or bullied, told to join a sports team, is a spirit-lifter for young people who need to be with others who share their interests. Prelude Chamber Music Camp fills a need that isn't being met any other way in North Florida. Well worth our time and funding.
Prelude Chamber Music, Inc. has inspired hundreds of young Jacksonville musicians to not only grow musically, but to have fun along the way! Campers receive personal coaching in an encouraging and positive environment, where they are mentored by some of the finest musicians in the city. There are no grades or trophies, but each student receives a far greater reward: they discover their dreams and potential, and experience a love of music which will last throughout their lives, whether they perform in orchestras or become future patrons. This is the Legacy of Prelude Chamber Music.