International Summer Music Academy

I feel that I have been introduced to a whole new variety of ways to produce sound and I have been able to explore repertoire. The teaching is particularly excellent and it was also interesting to have many different opinions on similar subjects from very experienced perspectives. I loved that there were concerts you could attend every day… the accompanists were fantastic and I loved playing with them.

Jo Eun-Shim, viola, Korea, ISMA 2015

Please note that the International Summer Music Academy and Ensemble Jeunesse are not being run in 2017 in light of our development of other training commitments throughout the festival, and as such we are not opening applications for any training programmes this year.

Our website will continue to be updated to reflect these changes as they are made public, and we hope that you find them as engaging and exciting as we do. Please feel free to browse these ISMA pages in the meantime, as they still serve to emphasise our commitment to excellence in music education and development, and do keep in touch with us regarding our evolving engagements elsewhere.

Alumni of ISMA include

The Heath, Sacconi and Belcea Quartets, Trio Steuermann, pianists Carole Presland and Steven Osborne, violinists Rafał Zambrzycki-Payne, Nikolaj Znaider, Jennifer Pike, Nicola Benedetti and Callum Smart, violist Jane Atkins and cellists Guy Johnston and Philip Higham.

For violin, viola, cello, piano, string quartets, piano trios, piano quartets and other string-only or string/piano ensembles

Lake District Summer Music is a closely integrated International Festival and Summer Music Academy for string players and pianists, or pre-formed chamber groups, seeking dedicated solo and chamber music training. The Academy is aimed at students who are interested in developing a career in performance or instrument tuition, who have already undertaken or are about to undertake studies at a conservatoire or university level and are typically aged 18-28.

LDSM International Summer Music Academy offers:

Inspiring Coaching with leading international artists

Daily coaching, individual lessons, public masterclasses and festival performance opportunities. Evening festival concerts are free for residential students at ISMA, so there are plenty of world-class concerts to enjoy as well.

Course flexibility designed to meet your needs

The Summer Music Academy provides high quality chamber music coaching for strings, strings with piano, etc., plus solo tuition. String players and pianists applying as soloists have individual lessons, classes and the opportunity to join ensembles. The daily schedule is designed to meet your individual or ensemble needs, but a typical day might be:

8:00-9:00 - Breakfast
9:00-10:30 - Large Ensemble - Chamber Music Rehearsal
10:30-11:00 - Morning Break
11:00-13:00 - Ensemble Tuition/Individual Lessons
13:00-14:00 - Lunch
14:00-15:30 - Instrumental Classes
15:30-16:00 - Afternoon Break
16:00-17:45 - Extra Tuition/Private Practice
17:45-18:30 - Dinner
18:30-19:15 - Transport to Evening Concert
19:30/20:00-21:30/22:00 - LDSM Evening Concert
21:30/22:00 - Transport Back to Brathay

The course begins with registration and the opportunity to attend an evening LDSM concert on the day of arrival, and ends with the student-led Candlelight Serenade concert on the final evening. Departure after breakfast on the Saturday after the course finishes.

Career-enhancing Festival opportunities

Build your reputation performing at one of the "top 10 festive festivals" in the world (Daily Telegraph) and perform alongside international artists.

Attractive facilities in a stunning location

Set at Brathay Hall on the north shores of Windermere in the heart of the inspirational English Lake District, this perfect location offers tutorial rooms, quality rehearsal pianos, a specialised music library, comfortable accommodation, good food and post-concert bar.

Join an international community

Meet colleagues, broaden horizons and socialise with Festival artists and tutors in a friendly and welcoming summer academy campus.

Benefit now

Watch masterclasses given by violinist Chloë Hanslip and cellist Colin Carr for free now via LDSM Masterclasses Live at