July 13-29, 2018


Every July, music, dance and theater are artfully blended with Festival Napa Valley and Napa’s incomparable food, wine and hospitality. The natural beauty of Napa Valley is the backdrop for breathtaking performances, vintner’s luncheons, winery dinners, community concerts and rejuvenating fitness activities.

Over the course of the Blackburn Music Academy, musicians perform in numerous concerts and professional development activities throughout the Festival.  Participating musicians:

  • Perform in chamber music groups with festival guest artists
  • Give their own full orchestral concerts
  • Concertize alongside internationally renowned musicians in orchestral concerts
  • Participate in sectionals and masterclasses
  • Have opportunities to participate in professional development activities

Repertoire highlights for Blackburn Music Academy musicians include:

  • Corigliano’s Red Violin to film with Joshua Bell as violin soloist
  • Vienna Philharmonic violinist Raimund Lissy performing and coaching chamber music works of Joseph Mayseder, portions to be used in Austrian television documentary
  • Russian chamber music with Principals of the Russian National Orchestra

As artists are also inspired by their surroundings, academy musicians have plenty of time to explore the Napa Valley on their own or in festival sponsored activities.  Hike along the mountain vineyards overlooking the valley, explore some of the best food in the country, or see what Napa wine is all about!

Housing is provided for all musicians with host families and can be considered your home away from home.  Host families are invited to many festival activities and can also serve as guides for the valley. 

California truly is a driving state and while many of the activities are situated around the city of Napa, having access to a car or a carpool is highly recommended.  There is limited public transportation and while many tourists enjoy biking the Napa Valley trails, bikes aren’t the most efficient means of transport for daily commutes.  Modest stipends are provided for those who bring their own car, and additional stipends for those that agree to carpool for other musicians. 


Scenes from the 2017 Academy