CSMA’s summer music program stands out because of its extraordinary faculty: distinguished guest artists and members of nationally renowned orchestras.

Students participate in masterclasses, recitals and chamber music ensembles. The program provides ample opportunities to perform in public, honing professionalism, developing leadership skills and building self-confidence. Applications are being accepted through May 30. 

CSMA Summer Music Institute at Tateuchi Hall

Music at Tateuchi

Launched in 2017, Music at Tateuchi provides an ideal environment for fostering young musical talent and focuses on providing students access to high-quality training with music professionals at the top of their field.

Read more about the program in a recent feature article from the Los Altos Town Crier, “Musical Mentoring: CSMA Summer Workshop Accelerates the Learning Curve.

Highlights of the program include:

  • Intended for emerging musicians aged 10-18.
  • Masterclasses exploring solo repertoire with world-renowned faculty.
  • One-on-one coaching sessions with faculty.
  • An in-depth and rigorous chamber music program.
  • Daily informal performance opportunities allowing students to hone their performance skills and become more comfortable on stage.
  • Formal performance opportunities for both solo and chamber music repertoire.
  • In-depth coaching on solo repertoire with staff collaborative pianists.
  • Lectures and group classes on performance, practicing effectively, and more.

Tuition & Dates

Program Dates

July 15-27, 2024

Application due May 30, 2024

Program Tuition



Dawn Harms (Artistic Director): Dawn Harms' diverse career ranges from being a chamber musician, violin soloist, and concertmaster, to being a music director and conductor. She is a first violinist in the San Francisco Opera Orchestra, Associate Concertmaster for the New Century Chamber Orchestra, and Co-Concertmaster with the Oakland Symphony. She also records regularly at Skywalker Studios for movies and video games. She teaches at Stanford University, and is the conductor of the pre-college string orchestra at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

Dawn is in her eleventh season as Music Director and conductor of the Bay Area Rainbow Symphony.

Harms was chosen as a Fellow at the exclusive American Academy of Conducting at the Aspen Music Festival, and has gone on to conduct the San Francisco opera orchestra, and regularly conducts as a clinician for high school honor string orchestras around the US.

A strong advocate for music education, Dawn has designed her own family show and has performed it throughout the United States, New Zealand, Japan.

She has performed chamber music with Lynn Harrell, Jake Heggie, Frederica von Stadt, and Nadja Solerno Sonnenberg.

Dawn plays on her cousin Tom Waits' CDs "Alice," "Blood Money, and Bad Is Me. Dawn also has two solo CD's, "The Black Swan" and "The Hot Canary" that can be found on Spotify and www.dawnharms.com.

Axel Schmitt CSMA Music Teacher

Dr. Axel Schmitt, piano, earned a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of California, Los Angeles; a Master of Music from the University of California, Los Angeles; and a Bachelor of Arts from University of California, Los Angeles.

In April 2004, Axel Schmitt was the piano soloist in Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the UCLA Philharmonia Orchestra. In the same year, he was invited to perform with the Grammy-winning Southwest Chamber-Music. His final doctoral recital at UCLA, which was announced as a featured recommendation in the LA Times, received a standing ovation from the audience. The program included Liszt’s transcription of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and the Don Juan Fantasy, which is the subject of his doctoral dissertation. In 2007, he performed Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto “Emperor” in Germany for a sold-out audience and received rave reviews from the press. In the same year, the United States government declared him an artist of extraordinary ability and granted him permanent residency.

At CSMA, he has performed solo and chamber-music in Tateuchi Hall to sold-out audiences. Axel Schmitt has participated in numerous international piano master-classes of Natalia Antonova, Dimitri Bashkirov, Sergei Dorensky, Elza Kolodin, Vitaly Margulis, Victor Merzhanov and others. Besides his solo activities, he has performed as an accompanist of singers, instrumentalists, and choirs. His extensive repertoire reaches from Bach to the 21st century and displays a special affinity for the music of Bach, Beethoven, and Liszt.

A native of Taiwan, Wenyi Shih began her violin studies at the age of 8, with her great aunt, Sylvia Lee. Under the tutelage of Lynn Chang, Shih went on to receive her Bachelor of Music from Boston Conservatory on full scholarship. While in the Northeast, Shih performed widely as an orchestral and chamber musician, including regular performances with Boston Symphony and Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra.

Since moving to the Bay Area, Shih has performed extensively with the San Francisco Opera Orchestra and the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra. With the latter, Wenyi has served as Acting Associate Concertmaster and Acting Assistant Principal Second Violin. Shih is a fixture in the chamber music scene, having performed at the Noontime Concerts Series, Sand Box and Chamber Music Sundaes, to name a few. She has been a fellow at Tanglewood Music Center and has performed at the Musicorda, Ballet Sun Valley, Napa Valley, Mainly Mozart and Mendocino Music Festivals.

Maintaining a private teaching studio, Wenyi’s students can be found in the various youth orchestras in the Bay Area and have been recognized by the Junior Bach Association amongst other competitions. Wenyi performs on a rare Tononi Family violin, ca. 1700. She lives in San Francisco with her husband, Eric Sung, their cat, Muffin, and their multitude of orchids.

Eric Sung is a principal cellist with San Francisco Ballet Orchestra. He has studied at the Cleveland Institute of Music, University of Southern California, and The Juilliard School. His principal teachers have included Stephen Geber, David Geber, Ronald Leonard, Fred Sherry, and Lynn Harrell.

An avid chamber musician, Sung has performed at the Taos, Sarasota, Scotia, Kent/Blossom, Aspen, Napa Valley, Tanglewood, Mendocino, and San Luis Obispo Mozaic Festivals. Sung studied with members of the American, Cleveland, Orion, Takacs, and Guarneri String Quartets and has performed in concert with the California E.A.R. Unit, Duke String Quartet, Quartet San Francisco, Joshua Bell, Michael Tree, Ronald Leonard, Alexander Kerr, John Graham, Lawrence Dutton, and Jeffrey Kahane.

Sung has been featured as a soloist with the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra, San Francisco Philharmonic, Colburn Chamber Orchestra, Saratoga Symphony, Stanford University Summer Symphony, Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra, and Aspen Academy of Conducting Orchestra. He has participated in the New York String Seminar, Piatigorsky Seminar and has performed at the National Repertory Orchestra, National Orchestra Institute, Pacific, Verbier Festivals and Sun Valley Symphony. This summer he makes his debut with the Mainly Mozart Festival in San Diego.

He was a member of Metamorphosen Chamber Orchestra and was assistant principal of the Hong Kong Philharmonic. Sung has served as acting guest principal of Sydney Symphony and National Arts Centre Orchestra and has performed with Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and the San Francisco Opera Orchestra.

A dedicated teacher, Sung is on the faculty at San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Pre-College Division and maintains a large private studio. He has served as a coach for the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, San Francisco Academy Orchestra, KAMSA Youth Orchestra, and Orchestra Institute Napa Valley.

A keen appreciator of antique instruments and bows, Eric plays on a Giovanni Tononi cello, c.1700 and bows by FX Tourte, Eury, and Maline.

Eric makes his home in San Francisco with his wife, Wenyi Shih, and their cat, Muffin, a tabby tortoiseshell mix.

Chen Woo (Collaborative Pianist) received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Piano Performance from Soochow University in Taiwan, where she studied with Professor Ruen-Ting Wang and Ching-Yun Wang. After graduating, Woo earned her Master of Music degree in Collaborative Piano from San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM), studying with Professor Tim Bach.

Additionally, Woo is a protégé of the late Maestro William Yannuzzi, music director of the Baltimore Opera Company. After finishing the master’s program at SFCM, Woo has developed a wide reputation as a collaborative pianist for instrumentalists and singers in the Bay Area. She has premiered the opera, Princess Peacock, by renowned composer Zhong Chiang, and has also been highly praised by the conductor of the Central Philharmonic Orchestra in China.

Woo has been appointed as a staff pianist at California Opera Association (founded by Edna Garabedian) and Opera Institute of California since 1999. Since then, she has performed more than twenty operas, and has collaborated with many well-established musicians such as Haik Kazazyan, Edna Garabedian, Bing Huang, among many others. She is the official accompanist of renowned violinist Haik Kazazyan, and they have performed in locations including Taiwan, Tennessee, and Japan.

Sample Schedule

Daily Institute Schedule

9:00-10:00am – Private Lessons with Institute Faculty

10:00am-11:50am – Morning Performance Classes: (Masterclasses, Chamber Ensemble Coaching, Rehearsals with Accompanists)

12:00-1:00pm – Lunch Break

1:00-2:50pm – Afternoon Performance Classes

3:00-4:00pm – Institute Forum: Informal Performances and Lectures on Special Topics

Concert Schedule

Formal Student Concerts:

Friday, July 19, 6:30 pm
Saturday, July 20, 2:00 pm
Friday, July 26, 6:30 pm
Saturday, July 27, 2:00 pm

Faculty Concert:

Wednesday, July 24, 6:30 pm

Application Process

Applications are now open! Deadline is May 30 2024. 


Step 1

Complete the application and submit your audition video.

Step 2

Pay the application fee by registering through CSMA’s online portal.  Applications will be considered incomplete until the application fee is received.

Step 3

Once the application and audition video have been reviewed students will be notified of their audition results by email.

Upon acceptance, applicants will receive registration instructions.

Accepted students are expected to participate for the full two-week period without absences.


Violin, viola, cello and piano students are welcome to apply.

Students can expect to fill their days with rigorous practice, master classes, lessons with master teachers, performances and chamber music, all while collaborating with other accomplished, pre-collegiate young musicians. The institute is designed as an introductory conservatory experience to encourage students to challenge themselves to perform at a higher level.

The application includes submission of a video of no less than 5 minutes and longer than 10 minutes containing excerpts from the required list below.  Please complete the application here.  The application deadline is April 30, 2024.

Required Audition Repertoire:

All applicants must submit a video recording which includes:

  • Violin: Two stylistically contrasting solos, one of which must be a movement from any Sonata or Partita for Violin Solo by J.S. Bach
  • Cello/Viola: Two stylistically contrasting solos, one of which must be a movement from any of the six suites for Cello/Viola Solo by J.S. Bach
  • Piano: One selection from the Baroque or Classical Period and one selection from the Romantic Period or later

Masterclasses and performance forums will give students the opportunity to perform solo pieces, and when appropriate, chamber music. The program will also conclude with a formal student recital.

About the Director:

Chaz Fautch, Program Director, is the current Music School Director of CSMA where in addition to the Summer Institute at Tateuchi Hall, he directs the Merit Scholars program, private lesson program, and Music School classes while overseeing the school’s faculty community. In addition to his time as Director, he has performed as a pianist throughout the US and Europe, studied at The Juilliard School, and taught for more than twenty-five years with students winning prestigious competitions and performing at venues such as Carnegie Hall. Prior to CSMA, Mr Fautch has served as Executive Director for Passport to the Arts, a community concert and art exhibition program, Dean of Music Education, and served in leadership roles of several nonprofit boards.