PACO’s annual chamber music workshop, affectionately known as PACO camp, marks the beginning of the musical season for members of Debut, Sinfonia, and Senior PACO. Set amid the rolling hills and lovely oaks of the Camp MayMac facility in Felton, California (near Santa Cruz), PACO camp is a refreshing break from our normal schedules, where one can practice, rehearse, and perform great chamber music without distractions, as well as relax, socialize, and enjoy the company of our community of musicians.
All PACO players who are placed by advancement or audition into one of these “top three” ensembles are required to attend the workshop.
At the camp, students are housed in bunk rooms and supervised, socially as well as musically, by a staff of Chamber Music Fellows, conservatory students and recent music school graduates from around the country. Running the program is Music Director Ben Simon and our Senior Faculty comprised of top professional chamber musicians from the Bay Area and across the country. This summer’s faculty are Ariana Kim, Jory Fankuchen, Natasha Makhijani, Scott Krijnen, Eugene Sor, Michel Taddei and Wendy Clymer.
Each day includes at least two chamber music rehearsals, a master class, three delicious meals, and plenty of time to hang out with friends. “Fright”-reading sessions, the PACO Festival Chorus, a hike to the beach, and nightly campfires keep everyone busy enough to sleep well at night and wake up refreshed for another day of music-making.
Every PACO student is placed in a chamber music ensemble and given the music well in advance of the workshop. The workshop ends with every ensemble performing in our private, “in-camp” concerts on Saturday afternoon and evening, and a public performance of selected works at 11:30 on Sunday morning.