School of Music

Summer Camp FAQs

Make payments here (if you need to know your balance, write to Pay online, or send a check with your consent forms at least 30 days prior to the start of camp. 

Download 2016 Medical and Consent Forms here - this cannot be completed online, but must have handwritten signatures.  Mail to USM School of Music, Summer Camps, 37 College Avenue, Gorham, ME 04038. Regular mail is the best way, at least 30 days prior to the start of camp.


Southern Maine Theatre Academy Camper and Parent Letter

Southern Maine Youth Band Day Camper and Parent Letter 

Southern Maine Music Academy Camper and Parent Letter - coming soon

Southern Maine Choral Music Academy Camper and Parent Letter - coming soon

Southern Maine Junior Music Academy Camper and Parent Letter


Other Frequently Asked Questions

The following are frequently asked questions that may be helpful to you. If one parent has unanswered questions, then surely others do as well, so please feel free to send me questions that are not yet on this page. I hope you find this helpful, and that your camper has the best summer musical or theatrical experience ever.

Best wishes,
Lori Arsenault
Performing Arts Operations and Concert Manager
Summer Camp Coordinator
USM School of Music / USM Department of Theatre


When sections are filling up, will I find out immediately if there is an opening?

No, the answer will not be immediate, especially in the first week when most of the registrations come in. If it were automated and a section filled, you'd just get a computerized reply saying that there are no spaces available. We decided that summer camp is just too important, and registration needs to be done name by name. First, all registrations before yours are processed, and rosters are checked and double checked. Then, if a section is filled, before offering you the opportunity to be on a waiting list we try to figure out a way to get you in. Thank you for your patience during this process. 

What should I prepare for my audition?

Right after registration, participants in Music Academy and Junior Music Academy will perform an audition for seating assignments. For Junior Music Academy, just prepare something long enough to demonstrate what you are capable of doing--something around 30 seconds to a minute should be long enough. You should know your concert Bb scale and chromatic scale if possible. Anything from a lesson or etude book would be great, but students have also auditioned on pieces they have played in their school band. Percussionists should have a snare drumpiece with some rudiments--rolls, flams, etc, and a mallet piece if possible. For Music Academy there is no prescribe time limit, just prepare a selection that best demonstrates your ability. A short étude to a portion of a larger work is sufficient.

Where do I check in on the first day of camp?

Where can I send a care package to my camper?

Send to:
Camper's Name
c/o USM School of Music
USM Summer Youth Music and Theatre Camps
37 College Avenue
Gorham, ME 04038.

What should my camper pack for camp?

That is different for each camp. We issue a camp letter for each camp prior to coming. If you need the list before you can find it, feel free to write to me and I'll send it to you.

Southern Maine Theatre Academy Camper and Parent Letter
Southern Maine Youth Band Day Camp and Parent Letter 
Southern Maine Music Academy (SoMMA)
Southern Maine Choral Music Academy
Southern Maine Junior Music Academy

Should percussionists bring any instruments?

Yes, percussionists should bring drumsticks. The University provides everything else they will need for rehearsals and performance.

How many campers in each room?

Overnight campers will be housed in Upperclass Hall in 2015, where there are 2 campers per room, and 2 rooms per suite. Therefore, a maximum of four students are housed together, 2 to a room. Each suite has a bathroom and kitchen area with a refrigerator. Campers have an opportunity to request specific roommates. We make every attempt to fill each request, but it's not always possible.

Can the dining hall accommodate issues of food sensitivity?

Yes. On the first day of each overnight camp, campers are welcome to meet the kitchen staff before the first meal to find out how to navigate the food choices. In the case of severe food allergies, dining hall personnel are willing to meet you in advance to accommodate special dietary needs. Contact us to make early arrangements.

How are medications handled?

We have a head counselor who is responsible for carrying out the parents' instructions regarding adminisrtation of medications, and you will have an opportunity at check-in to speak privately with the head counselor regarding any medical issues. We also rely on completed parental consent forms to let us know in advance of any particular health concerns. 

Can the campers bring an iPhone?

Yes, campers can bring iPhones, but they will be expected to use them appropriately. They can not use them during rehearsals, and should primarily use them for contact with family, and as alarm clocks and metronomes. They can be used in a limited way to stay in touch with friends, but campers should primarily be socializing with their new friends at camp. Any kind of inappropriate communication while at camp, such as cyberbullying, is cause for immediate dismissal.



How do we make payments?

Please make NO PAYMENTS until after March 1 - You may send a check, but it will not be processed until after March 1. 

Make payments here (a link will be provided here after March 1 for online payments)

We can start accepting (depositing) money on March 1, and if you'd like to pay by check, you can send that in anytime, no need to wait. The online link will open up on March 1 for those who would like to pay with a credit card. For those already accepted into the camps, you can pay any amount, from the non-refundable $50 to the full amount of the camp, or any amount in between.  The non-refundable $50 deposit to hold your spot should be received within the first week of March, or within a week of receiving your acceptance confirmation. If you send a check, please include the students name(s) and the name or abbreviation of the camp they are attending.  SMTA - Southern Maine Theatre Academy - June 19-24, 2016SMYBDC - Southern Maine Youth Band Day Camp - June 20-24, 2016SoMMA - Southern Maine Music Academy - July 9-17, 2016SMCMA - Southern Maine Choral Music Academy - July 18-23, 2016SMJMA - Southern Maine Junior Music Academy - July 24-30, 2016


Make payable to "USM," and put your child's name and camp designation (SMTA, SMYBDC, SoMMA, SMCMA, or SMJMA)

Mailing address for checks and medical and consent forms:

Send to:
Lori Arsenault
USM School of Music
37 College Avenue
Gorham, ME 04038

When does final payment have to be made?
Final payment must be made at least thirty days prior to the start of camp, along with the complete medical and parental consent forms.
Download 2016 Medical and Consent Forms, revised March 15, 2016

How and where do I send the forms?
Forms can be either mailed to the address on the form or faxed to 207-780-5527. Please include a cover sheet with a fax, attention to Lori Arsenault; it's a shared fax machine.

If there is any sensitive data on your form, you may prefer to mail it. Forms can also be scanned and emailed to, however, 1) the signatures must be real, handwritten signatures, and 2) it's preferred that the format be pdf, with all four pages contained in the same file. Again, if these forms contain sensitive data, you may prefer to mail it. We only use the original forms, and shred all but the consent signatures at the end of the camp season. 

Why can't I just bring the final payment and consent forms to check-in?
The reason that we must have your forms and payments in advance is first, so that I can prepare the camp directors and head counselors for who they will have in their sections, who has any special dietary or medical needs, AND who doesn't. When there are forms and payments still outstanding, we have to make many revisions to the rosters and staff books in order to keep track of your children. The amount of time that is spent by staff on collecting outstanding forms and payments is time better spent preparing for camp. There are many weeks of work that takes place before camp begins. In order for check-in to be smooth and pleasant, and to be assured that sections are filled and campers and staff have what they need on the first day of camp, we absolutely must have your materials well in advance. Thank you for your kind cooperation. Please download the consent form and send it in soon.

Do I have to make my deposit and other payments online? Online payments are meant to be a convenience for you, but we also welcome cash and check payments. However, they must be timely. Non-refundable $50 deposit must be made right away. Final payments must be made at least thirty days prior to the start of your camp, regardless of payment type. NEW THIS YEAR - Please do not make deposits until after March 1, 2016.

Why are deposits non-refundable?
The USM Summer Youth Music and Theatre camps are very popular. Some sections fill on the first day and potential campers are placed on a waiting list. But some of them don't stay there and make other plans. Those who respond quickly and take a space on the roster and then change their plans are having an effect on the planning of others. We must do all that we can to assure that those on the roster are fully intending to attend camp, and that no additional resources are spent on cancellations. Likewise, once a camper is at camp, the full registration fee will not be refunded. 

How can I give feedback?
We'd love to have feedback about your summer camp experience at USM. Send questions, comments, concerns and helpful suggestions to me, Lori Arsenault,, to the School of Music director, Alan Kaschub,, or to any of the camp directors. Their contact information will be in the camp letters. We're working very hard to give your children the best musical and theatrical experience possible, and your feedback will be very helpful and appreciated.

Return to the USM Summer Youth Music and Theatre Camps home page.