Study composition and theory at The Hartt School Community Division
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Composition and theory

Lesson Information

Composition and Theory LessonsFees/notes
Tuition per 30-, 45-, 60-min lesson$41.25, $57.00, $75.75
Starting age12 and up (please contact us for younger students)
LocationMain campus and Simsbury satellite
A $25 registration fee may apply.

Need-based financial assistance is available for youth. Private lessons are available during the academic year and summer.

Composition Lessons

Composition, Theort, and Musicianship at The Hartt School Community DivisionComposition study involves intensive instruction on techniques applicable to classical music and a wide variety of other musical styles. It is a highly individualized program designed for anyone with an interest in creating their own music regardless of past experience.

Lessons include guided assignments and independent work on original compositions with targeted feedback from the instructor. Practice in music theory, ear-training, and discussion of professional topics are included where relevant to the student’s background and goals.  

Music Theory lessons

Composition, Theort, and Musicianship at The Hartt School Community DivisionMusic Theory private instruction involves a combination of written theory, ear-training, sight-singing, and/or keyboard skills. The course of study is tailored to each student, taking into account their current level and goals. These lessons are intended for students interested in deepening their understanding of musical structures and improving their practical musicianship skills.

Our theory instructors can help students prepare for college entrance exams, placement tests, and/or the AP Music Theory Exam.  Please note that for such tests, early preparation is key! Students interested in taking theory lessons to prepare for a test are encouraged to start lessons the fall before the test will be scheduled. Later starts are possible but not encouraged.  

HOW TO ENROLL in Private lessons

Students and their families cannot enroll themselves in private lessons online.  

If you would like to enroll in private lessons and have been placed with an instructor, please contact our staff at 860.768.4451 or  Please be sure you have talked with the teacher about your weekly lesson length and number of lessons during the academic year.

If you have not been placed with an instructor, please complete the lesson inquiry form.

If you would like to change your private lesson length or number of lessons, please talk with your teacher and contact the staff once the teacher approves.

Honors Program

Download the 2018–19 Composition Honors Information Sheet (PDF)

Apply online by June 1, 2018.

The Hartt School Community Division (HCD) Composition Honors Program provides mentorship and performance opportunities to advanced composition students entering grades 9–12. Upon successful application to the program, each Honors Composer is paired with an HCD performer or ensemble to create a new work to be premiered in spring 2018. Additionally, students receive mentorship from the Creative Studies Chair and our Graduate Fellow. Students participating in the Honors Program must be enrolled in either private lessons or the Young Composers Project.

Collaborations are arranged by the Creative Studies Chair. These projects differ each year, and past Honors partnerships have been arranged with HCD soloists and chamber ensembles, Opus ’89 string orchestra, Philharmonia Winds, and the Dance Department. The exact nature and timeline for each Honors Composition project is decided no later than the first few weeks of the fall semester.


The Hartt Community Division’s Musicianship classes are designed to supplement weekly private instruction on an instrument or voice. This program allows students build skills and gain knowledge relating to music theory, ear training, and music history. These engaging classes are filled with opportunities for listening, discussion, and active participation. Classes are open to all HCD private-lesson students at no additional charge. Classes are also available to students who do not take private lessons at HCD. Tuition and fees apply. For more information, visit the Musicianship page.

Works composed by Composition Private Lesson Students

If you have any questions, please get in touch with us at 860.768.4451 or