Summer Intensive Program

Summer Intensive Program

Late June – Early August
Grades 6 – 12
Application open: January 1
Application deadline: April 1
Tuition: $1,800

Program Offerings

The Summer Intensive program runs from late June through early August. Click here for this summer’s schedule. Participants in the program will play challenging pieces from the standard and modern chamber music repertoire. During this time, students will participate in:

  • Bi-weekly (twice a week) coachings with faculty from the Atlanta Symphony and Atlanta Opera
  • Weekly masterclasses with nationally recognized distinguished artists
  • 5-day retreat at the University of North Georgia
  • Outreach performances in the Atlanta metro area
  • Formal performance at the end of the summer session

Additional coachings, master classes, and performance opportunities are available for groups exhibiting consistent rehearsal practices and marked improvement.


The Summer Intensive Program is open to students in grades 6-12. If your student is a rising 6th grader or a graduated senior they may also apply. Although the majority of applicants are string players and pianists due to the broad repertoire available for those instruments, non-string players are welcome and encouraged to apply. Franklin Pond will do everything possible to place all accepted students into a group with matched ability and temperament. Pre-formed groups, both string and non-string, are welcome and encouraged to apply.


Click here to download a PDF of the 2024 Summer Program schedule. Click here to access the Google Calendar version.

A minimum of three hours of rehearsal per week outside the scheduled Summer sessions is required of each group. Students will be responsible for scheduling the time and place of these rehearsals. Much like individual practice done between weekly private lessons, this rehearsal time is critical to the group’s progress; the more a chamber group rehearses together, the better they will become. Franklin Pond can help facilitate scheduling if needed.

Please note that every participant must attend all sessions, including the retreat.  An absent student affects their entire chamber group.  If a student has an unavoidable conflict, a parent/guardian may request special permission for the student to miss one day; however, the inability to attend all sessions could have an effect on the applicant's acceptance into the program.


At each summer session and the retreat, ensembles will receive coachings from the Franklin Pond faculty, all of whom perform with Atlanta Symphony or The Atlanta Opera. Ensembles will work with multiple coaches throughout the summer so they can benefit from a variety of musical perspectives.


At each summer session and the retreat, ensembles will participate in masterclasses with distinguished masterclass artists from around the country. Additional masterclasses may be offered throughout the summer as artists become available.


The retreat takes place on the campus of the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega, GA. Franklin Pond students stay in the dorms on campus, eat at the university’s dining hall, and rehearse in the music building. Retreat activities include:

• Daily intensive rehearsals and coachings
• Masterclasses with FPCM faculty and guest artists
• Faculty performance
• Recreational time in and around campus
• Dinner at the Smith House
• Free time in the Dahlonega main square

The retreat is a strong bonding experience for all students and a highlight of the summer. Parents are responsible for dropping off and picking up students from the retreat. All costs of the retreat are included in the Summer Intensive Program tuition.


Every chamber group will perform at the Summer Finale Concert, held the last week of July or first week of August (depending on the start of the school-year). Each group will also play at least one community concert in the Atlanta Metro area. Other performance opportunities are available depending on the preparedness of each group.

All summer concerts are free and open to the public.


Scholarships are awarded by request.  A teacher recommendation as well as a completed application are required for all students seeking scholarship. Teachers should send their recommendations to For questions, please email or contact Ronda Respess at (404)252-3479.

Summer Intensive Program News

The 2024 Summer Intensive Program schedule has been posted. Click here to download a PDF of the schedule. Sunday, June
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The Summer was definitely intense this year, with big challenges for the students, who rose to them beautifully. The Summer
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2023 Summer Photo Highlights

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