Academy 2020

  • For vocalists ages 12-18
  • July 2-12, 2020
  • Mount St. Mary’s University, Los Angeles, CA
  • $2,250 (includes food and lodging)
  • Partial and Full-Ride Scholarships available
  • NOTE: Students who will be high school seniors in the 2019-2020 school year ARE eligible, but students who will be college (university) freshmen during the 2019-2020 school year are not eligible.


After careful consideration, we have decided to pivot this year’s summer session to a new virtual format. We’re calling it A Cappella Academy DIGITAL, and it will take place July 6-10. We’ll be offering online classes, social events, and guest performances, as well as producing videos for each group and Academy Choir! Additionally, some of the classes we’ll be offering will be open to the public. The week-long session will culminate in a live-streamed Virtual Showcase on July 11, where we’ll premiere all of our new videos!

We will be posting updates on social media along the way, and until then, we hope you are staying safe and healthy.

Ben, Rob, and Avi


To get a sense of what we’re looking for, read this article.

Please make sure your video is edited together in the following order:

  1. Introduction
    • Say hello!  Tell us your name, age, voice part, and where you’re from.
  2. Main skill
    • If you are primarily a solo/part singer, sing two contrasting solos for us, unaccompanied. We want to hear your tone, phrasing, intonation, personality, and energy. Have fun with these and pick songs that are in your comfort zone, we want to see you at your best!  Just a verse/chorus of each song is plenty. No Musical Theatre or Classical pieces, please.
    • If you are primarily a beatboxer/vocal percussionist, please give us a demonstration (approx 2-3 mins), which can include anything and everything you’re comfortable with (straight-ahead beats, fills, freestyle beatboxing, etc). ALSO, please include a segment where you do a simple beat at a comfortable tempo along with a metronome. No need to be flashy for this part, we just want to see that you can keep a solid tempo.
    • If you are primarily a bass singer, sing us a bass line using bass syllables (dm, doom, bm, ba, etc.) and also a bass vocal solo. The bass line can be something you just make up, or it can be an existing bass line. For the bass vocal solo, think along the lines of Old Man River, but it can be any song in any style. We just want to hear you sing a low range solo with lyrics. For both of these demonstrations, we’re looking for tone, pitch accuracy, and style. Note: if you are a bass with a higher solo register, you will also have the opportunity to show that to us as your secondary skill (see below).
  3. Part singing
    • NOTE: This is the most important part of the audition!
    • You can download the materials for both “Georgia On My Mind” and “I Wish” *CLICK HERE*
    • Use the learning tracks and sheet music to learn whichever voice part suits you best on each song. (Beatboxers must sing for both examples.)
    • Pay attention to the phrasing, dynamics, and inflections of the voices on the demo, and do your best to blend with them.
    • Once you have each song learned, play the “performance” track for your part and sing along with it (your part will be missing from this track, you fill it in with your voice). When you record yourself doing this, we want to hear mostly you, but also the performance track in the background as well. You don’t need to have it memorized.
    • For “I Wish,” please snap along.
  4. Scales
    • Sing along with our scale guides (right click and “save link as” to download these: SCALES GOING UP and SCALES GOING DOWN) and stop singing once you can’t sing any higher or lower.  Don’t be shy, just go for it, we know the extreme ranges aren’t always gonna be pretty!  For scales going up, sing “eeee-aaahh” and use your chest/mix voice as high as you can, and then flip into head voice and continue. For scales going down, sing “yah yah yah yah yah”. If this is confusing, check out some of our auditions on YouTube.
  5. Secondary skill (optional)
    • If you are a solo/part singer and you also can sing bass and/or beatbox, show us what you got! If not, just skip this step.
    • If you are a bass or beatboxer, please sing a solo for us as your secondary skill. (For basses, this should be more of a baritone-range solo.)
    • Also, if you are a bass who can beatbox or a beatboxer who can sing bass, show us that as well!
  6.  Misc. skills (optional)
    • If you have any other special vocal skills, demonstrate them here. This can be literally anything you want! Scatting, singing in another language, original songs, multitrack video harmonizing with yourself, instrument imitation, throat singing, sound effects, vocal impersonations, etc! Instruments/tracks are okay for this section if it’ll help showcase one of your skills.
  7. Personal statement
    • Briefly tell us why you’re interested in coming to A Cappella Academy, and what you think you would add to camp!

***If you are recording your video with a webcam, make sure to adjust your microphone input level so that the sound doesn’t distort.  On a Mac, go into System Preferences > Sound > Input tab and lower the input volume.

***Your video can either be in one complete take OR edited together. The audio must remain raw and untouched – no EQ, compression, reverb, or pitch correction of any kind. We want to hear you as you sound in the room.


Once you have completed and uploaded your video to YouTube, you are ready to fill out our application! Accepted students will have the opportunity to apply for scholarships.


We charge a $25 application fee ($20 if you submit by Dec 1) so that we may carefully consider and process each individual applicant. The application includes information on how to pay.

Our scholarship application process will happen after we accept this year’s campers.

If you’re at all on the fence about auditioning for financial reasons, please audition! If you are accepted, we have an ample scholarship program to help you, and auditioning does not mean you are 100% committing to attend, as we know plans and circumstances can change.


To learn more about Academy, click the “About” and “FAQ” sections of our website menu.


October 1, 2019 – applications open

December 1, 2019 at 11:59pm in all timezones – EARLY BIRD AUDITION DEADLINE ($5 off application fee)

January 15, 2020 at 11:59pm in all timezones – FINAL AUDITION DEADLINE

February 1, 2020 – applicants will be notified of audition results