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7 Sources for Top Online Master Classes To Take This Summer

Participating in a masterclass is such a treasured experience that every aspiring musician should seek one out. However, don’t overlook the value in observing a masterclass as well. With so much educational content moving to online delivery, it’s not surprising that the classical music masterclass experience is available online now as well.

Here are seven exciting sources for online masterclasses for the discerning string musician. 

  • Cracking the Violin Code! From Udemy.com is a masterclass geared towards beginner violinists, although it can provide proper technique instruction as a refresher for any student violinist. Right now, its tuition fee is on a crazy reduction, from $199.99 to only $13.99, which probably won't last very long. The class itself is 5 hours of on-demand instruction plus additional instructional materials, which enrolled students can access for life. The course is led by Yuliyan Stoyanov, an internationally-recognized violinist who also holds a Doctoral degree in Violin Performance. The class has an impressive 4.5-stars based on over 300 ratings. 
  • Interested in Baroque music? Check out the Baroque Violin Master Class, taught by Shunske Sato, who is currently the artistic director of the Netherlands Bach Society. He’s performed and recorded playing both the violin and viola, so violists may find this class useful as well. There are four hours of class instruction across eight lessons, based on the classes he teaches at Conservatory of Amsterdam. The rate is €119 and enrolled students have access to the lessons for one year.  
  • If you want to observe past master classes by an undisputed maestro, this collection of recorded master classes lead by Pinchas Zukerman is available for free. The recordings are of master classes he taught from 2000 through 2004. If you’re happy to look past the unglamorous looking website and older recordings, this is a treasure trove of free material from a true genius. 
  • If you subscribe to Medici.tv, you already have access to a cello masterclass lead by Anner Bylsma, winner of the Pablo Casals Award in 1959. After a long international career, this acknowledged cello master now focuses on teaching. As part of Medici.tv’s private lesson series, there’s also a masterclass dedicated to violists! These hour-long classes aren’t traditional master classes, but mini-documentaries out of France that focus on showcasing the master in a teaching environment. If you don’t want to subscribe to Medici.tv, the site provides links where the recordings can be purchased on other sites. 
  • And now for something completely different… You can take a masterclass on film scoring taught by Hans Zimmer, famed for Gladiator and The Lion King, among countless other well-known film scores. 

The website Masterclass offers this intensive, 31-lesson masterclass with Zimmer, which includes assignments and teacher feedback on your work (yes, that means Zimmer’s feedback).  The site offers a 7-day free trial. An annual subscription is $180 and gives you access to all its classes. If you’re interested in also learning about performance from Usher or jazz from Herbie Hancock, which are just a couple of the other masterclasses on the site, the annual subscription may be the way to go. If you’re only interested in a single class, you can buy access to Zimmer’s class for $90. 

  • Another masterclass aggregation site is the Masterclass Media Foundation. While Masterclass.com offers classes ranging in topics from music to cooking to design, the Masterclass Media Foundation is dedicated to classical music masterclasses. The organization records live masterclasses with world-class musicians and then makes them available for purchase online. The library includes masterclasses by cellist Steven Isserlis and violinist Ana Chumachenco, among many other orchestra musicians and conductors. You can check out short clips they upload to YouTube to get a taste of what you’ll get before you buy. 

This list of online masterclass options should get you started. Whether you want to invest only an hour or plan out an intensive schedule – these will keep you busy. Put some of the free time that summer offers to good use – take an online masterclass! You’ll still have plenty of free time for the beach or road tripping. 

Back to School Giveaway 2018