Advanced students entering grades 8-12 can audition for CIM's Pre-College program, a comprehensive course of study that prepares them for acceptance into CIM's Young Artist Program, college music school or conservatory. Pre-College students take weekly hour-long private lessons; attend weekly classes in piano, music theory and Eurhythmics; and participate in an ensemble. They also receive complimentary tickets to almost every Cleveland Orchestra performance at Severance Hall, reserved seats for CIM Orchestra concerts at Severance Hall, full privileges at CIM's Robinson Music Library, seminars on relevant topics and access to all conservatory master classes and performances. Students preparing for college will receive individual guidance from experienced admissions staff.

Program at a Glance

  • Students receive weekly private lessons 
  • Harmony-ear training is offered
  • Students enjoy classes in piano, music theory and Eurhythmics
  • Students have access to educational seminars and conservatory master classes and performances 
  • Ensemble music and training is provided by top faculty
  • Students playing an orchestral instrument may audition for the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra and/or the Contemporary Youth Orchestra
  • CIM maintains cooperative alliances with partner schools that enable students to pursue their academic studies in the morning and their music courses at CIM in the afternoon
  • Housing and transportation is not provided by CIM

Application & Audition

To apply for the Pre-College program, please fill out our form. For a complete list of all required materials, please see our Pre-College Application Checklist. To inquire about the program and learn more about the audition process, please email

Please note: International students are required to obtain an I-20 from their academic institution and have sufficient English fluency in reading, writing and aural comprehension. Applicants for whom English is a second language are required to submit test results from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) examination; a minimum score of 79 is needed to participate in this program.