Christchurch School of Music

Chamber Music

Making friends while making music….

The core elements of chamber music at the CSM are provided through weekly sessions as well as a summer holiday programme.

  • Practice—the individual’s task
  • Rehearsal—the group’s opportunity
  • Coaching—expert advice and direction
  • Performance—sharing music with others

Playing in ensembles requires a high level of commitment and flexibility. Coaches will assist in the technical aspects of putting together a strong musical performance while individuals in the ensemble will learn to work through relationship issues, learning to take on different roles as required.

Practice: Each participant will be expected to maintain an acceptable standard of at home personal practice, appropriate to the level of their ensemble. Seeking help from private tutors is permissible and encouraged. By practicing faithfully, the musician is able to effectively rehearse.

Rehearsal: Each player is expected to participate in weekly group rehearsals. These will be coordinated primarily by the players with the aid of the CSM Chamber Music Supervisor. These rehearsals will be uncoached.

Coaching Sessions:

  • Coaching will primarily be to help players develop effective rehearsal techniques, group collaboration, and teamwork within the discipline of music.
  • Coaches will encourage participants to work together, show respect when disagreeing, negotiate with different viewpoints and approaches.
  • Performance preparations will include attention to bowing, articulation, musicianship, communication, and specialised intonation concepts.
  • Encouraging helpful rehearsal techniques will include guidance in delegation, role responsibilities, listening and evaluating, and practice methods within their musical contexts.

Music is chosen with the expectation that participants will practice and learn their parts in preparation of rehearsals. Chamber music literature requests are carefully considered and, when possible, honoured. It is advised that players are playing at an equivalent Grade 4 level in their particular instrument.

Cost options:

  • $300 per student – includes weekly rehearsal space, 10 coaching sessions with a qualified tutor throughout the year, music selection, and performance opportunities
  • $700 per student – includes weekly tutor sessions, music selection, and performance opportunities
  • Holiday Programme is $225 per student (includes Programme T-shirts)

Why chamber music? The obvious pleasurable benefit of making new friends and playing chamber music together is much more fun than interpreting and communicating music by oneself. The proven benefits of individually mastering a musical instrument are heightened and developed when playing chamber music—heightened verbal and aural communication skills and increased learning to problem solve as a team. When expertly instructed in a small group, students gain an invaluable tool as they progress through life, in any capacity. Whether a student wishes to develop a lifelong career as a musician, a corporate executive or a renowned medical professional, the benefits from experiencing a superb chamber music education are indefinite.

At the CSM Chamber Music Programme, we take great pride in our goals of nurturing and strengthening both the musical as well as the personal growth of each individual student. Our team of experienced faculty and staff is highly skilled at working with students of all ages—at all levels of their musical and emotional development. No matter how much or how little experience our students have when they start, they are closely fostered into becoming better musicians and stronger communicators. It is our aim that these students gain lifelong friends who will also share their special musical gift for years to come.

The CSM believes in honouring the special voice in all musicians. We coach, encourage, and applaud all groups equally, from high level ensembles to those with participants just starting to play chamber music. Our goal is to use the tools of coaching and performance to build confidence, ability, communication, and collaboration skills in each student.

We will explore the repertoire and techniques within the world of chamber music. The programme includes personal practise requirements, group rehearsal times, and chamber music coaching with faculty. Performance opportunities will be offered throughout the year.

Please enrol using this form.  An invoice will be sent once your enrolment is received.


  • PLAY! At Chamber Music Play Days

    Sundays 1.30-4.30

    Venue: Christchurch School of Music, 60 Ferry Road

    Although some of our adult students play in weekly chamber music groups, we recognise that a weekly commitment is not practical for everyone.

    Held four times per year, Chamber Music Play Days provide an opportunity for small groups of adult players to get together to play, receive coaching, and perform in an informal concert at the end of the day. Ensembles range from trios to quintets or even larger if the appropriate players are available. Existing groups are most welcome, however if individual players enrol with sufficient notice, they can normally be placed in suitable ensembles. Groups can choose the work to be studied or, alternatively, CSM can select and supply copies of an appropriate work for the group.

    Here’s the 2020 dates 

    March 8th – wind instruments and piano only

    June 14th – strings, wind and piano Cancelled

    Aug 16th – strings, wind and piano Cancelled

    Oct 11th – strings, wind and piano Cancelled


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