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Yo-Yo Ma, Cellist

"The Quartet Program is the best program of its kind that I know.  Every young person not only learns many of the great works written for this genre, but they must also learn how to work with each other and to communicate the most personal thoughts to their colleagues.  No one emerges from the program without great love of music and better knowledge of interpersonal relationships.  I view this program as a training ground for lifemanship.”
Modern Architecture

Welcome to the Castleman Quartet Program

Summer 2024

About us

Founded by Charles Castleman in 1970, this unique summer program will be held in Fredonia, NY in 2023.


At the Castleman Quartet Program in Fredonia, each 7-week participant will learn “from scratch” and perform one concerto movement, 2 contrasting Bach movements(or the equivalent), two string quartets and a Sonata– ideal preparation for college auditions or solo competitions.  There are analogous opportunities for 3-week participants.  Subject to availability, a week of Sonata study occurs in the final week of the 7-week session.


CQP’s schedule is partially structured as a sample organized workday, and partially unstructured to allow each participant to discover the most effective conditions for his or her optimum progress.  Each ensemble, assembled and assigned by Charles Castleman, remains intact for the duration of the session, with all the CQP faculty involved in teaching verbal and non-verbal communication and the principles of Group Dynamics, and mediating problem resolution.


Accepting only 36 applicants in a given season, CQP’s success rate is unique.  CQP counts among its past participants 46 alumni in groups with a permanent university residency. There are 22 active professional chamber groups with more than one CQP alumnus/member, and 108 such groups with one CQP alumnus.  86 orchestras have at least one principal player who attended CQP.

CQP alumni are in groups featured on the covers of Vogue and Strad magazines, and in a group sponsored by Thomastik (makers of Vision, Infeld and Dominant strings).  There is a VP of Deutsche Bank, a doctor who discovered a cure for a previously always fatal genetic disease, and an executive of Legal Aid in the San Francisco area.  CQP alumni have become directors and writers of such TV shows as “Seinfeld” and “Desperate Housewives”.  Some have emerged as producers for the most important recording companies, and more than 20 alumni have become directors of their own arts programs.


CQP’s record of success is self-perpetuating.  Its alumni are excited to help younger colleagues who shared the CQP experience.


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