Adam Summer School: Celebrating 25 years

“The high point for me during the week is seeing everyone’s hard work pay off at the concert, and the energy that surrounds all the performances. Also having meal times and the evenings to get to know people better and strengthen friendships is really cool.”

2019 Adam Summer School student

February 2019

The 2019 Adam Summer School was also the programme's 25th anniversary. What an amazing milestone to reach! The school is a residential chamber music programme and this year 28 students from New Zealand and Australia spent over a week participating in intensive coaching and public masterclasses with the New Zealand String Quartet members, pianist Jian Liu, and Feldenkrais method instructor Elke Dunlop. One participant explained:

The School is by far the best musical experience I have had – a very good balance of learning from the tutors, practising as a group and learning how to work together as a team.

And we could not be happier that we could return for such an occasion to the newly-refurbished Nelson Centre of Musical Arts. Having the space to run concurrent coaching sessions, private lessons, and allocate individual practice times all in one building made a positive difference in running this year’s school. Despite some initial concerns about the bush fires raging near Nelson, the students agree that Nelson provides the perfect home for the Adam Summer School – with one commenting that it’s a ‘really beautiful place’.

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Students during coaching at the 2019 Adam Summer School

NZSQ Summer School 2000

A look back at the 2000 Adam Summer School students and tutors

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2019 Adam Summer School students and tutors

The two Finale Concerts held on the last day of the course, 17 February, marked the high point for many students. As one student explained:

The high point for me during the week is seeing everyone’s hard work pay off at the concert, and the energy that surrounds all the performances. Also having meal times and the evenings to get to know people better and strengthen friendships is really cool.

Audience members, too, expressed that the standards of these performances were impressive. One student called the Adam Summer School ‘a life-changing experience I will remember forever’; others described it as ‘unforgettable, rewarding, challenging, awesome’ and as ‘an exhilarating week of learning, expanding my musical horizons'. Thanks to the generous support from the Adam Foundation, the school just seems to keep getting stronger. Some students return year after year for a course that’s both ‘totally inspiring and fun’ and enables them to surpass their own performance goals. We’re looking forward to year 26 already!

The New Zealand String Quartet gratefully acknowledges its sponsors and funders