Instrumental & Vocal Department

The School’s ensembles provide students with a comprehensive experience performing music of various periods and genres. These groups meet weekly and perform in the School’s major concerts, including the Winter Ensembles Concert, Holiday Choral Concert, Winter Chamber Soirée, Spring Chamber Recital, and Spring Ensembles Concert.


Diller-Quaile Youth Opera


Diller-Quaile Youth Opera provides a comprehensive experience in the preparation and performance of opera for school-age singers. Students rehearse and perform solos, scenes, and choruses from Baroque through Contemporary operas and staged works, with an emphasis on works specifically composed for young singers. Weekly rehearsals with a musical coach and a stage director focus on musical style, language, diction, character development, and stagecraft, leading to a performance at the end of the season. An important aspect of Diller-Quaile Youth Opera is that students have the opportunity to be mentored by and perform with professional singers. Repertoire assignments are based on age, level, and voice category. An audition is required.

FALL: September through December
Junior Division Wednesday 5:30-6:15 p.m.
Senior Division Wednesday 6:15-8:00 p.m.
WINTER: January through March
Junior Division Wednesday 5:30-6:15 p.m.
Senior Division Wednesday 6:15-8:00 p.m.


Chamber Music
Intermediate and advanced students explore score reading and ensemble playing in ensembles of two to eight players or singers, which meet weekly throughout the school year. Ensembles study a wide range of repertoire from the works of Baroque through Contemporary composers and are shaped according to level. Placement auditions for returning students will be held in the spring and during interviews for new students.


Young Children’s Chorus (Grades 1&2)

Wednesday 3:45-4:30 p.m.

Intermediate Chorus (Grades 3-6)

Wednesday 4:35-5:25 p.m.

The Diller-Quaile Chorus (Grades 5-8)

Monday 4:40-5:40 p.m.

Diller-Quaile’s choruses provide sequential study of choral literature for young voices and the fundamentals of vocal technique. Through the study of choral repertoire spanning various periods and styles, students develop ensemble skills, sight-singing skills, comfort with score reading, and music literacy. Diller-Quaile choruses perform in the School’s large ensemble concerts each semester.


Diller-Quaile Orchestras

Diller-Quaile’s orchestras provide ensemble and performance opportunities for intermediate through advanced players.  The orchestras focus on the development of strong ensemble skills and reading, as students learn to follow a conductor and become acquainted with music of various periods and styles. All orchestras perform each semester at the School’s large ensemble concerts.

Advanced students audition for The Diller-Quaile Orchestra. Playing is on a highly polished level, with emphasis on stylistic nuance, phrasing, sight-reading, and sophisticated ensemble playing. Orchestra coaches play along with the students and conduct sectionals, offering advice and practical suggestions on all aspects of orchestral playing. Orchestra mentors rehearse and play alongside students in performance, providing students a glimpse at the work of the young professional musician.

Reading Orchestra Saturday 9:00-9:45 a.m.
Intermediate Orchestra Monday 6:30-7:30 p.m.
Diller-Quaile Orchestra Monday 6:30-7:30 p.m.


Percussion Ensemble

The Percussion Ensemble rehearses and performs repertoire drawn from classical literature, folk, world musics, and various contemporary styles. Intermediate and advanced percussion students hone score reading and ensemble skills through work on a variety of percussion instruments, including marimba, timpani, auxiliary percussion, and various hand drums.

Monday 7:45-8:30 p.m.


Contemporary Ensemble Workshop

The Contemporary Ensemble Workshop is an intensive immersion in a range of contemporary classical and non-classical styles, including jazz, rock, folk, and world music. Over two Saturdays, advanced instrumentalists rehearse works specially arranged for the ensemble in preparation for a performance at the School’s Winter Instrumental Ensembles Concert in December and Spring Chamber Recital in May.

Saturday, November 19 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Saturday, December 10 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 13 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Saturday, May 20 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

To inquire about enrolling in lessons or classes, please contact 212-369-1484, ext. 26 or


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View and download a 2016-2017 Application Form.