2022-23 Musician Handbook: Tuition & Tuition Assistance

Tuition, Payments, and Fees

Annual tuition varies by orchestra as follows:

  • Philharmonia East: $775
  • Philharmonia West: $775
  • Sinfonia East: $840
  • Sinfonia West: $840
  • Concertino East: $935
  • Concertino West: $935
  • Camerata: $960
  • Concert Orchestra: $995
  • Philharmonic: $1,080
  • Symphony: $1,210

All orchestras also have a $50 per retreat fee.


Families may pay in full or with an eight-month installment plan (August – March). If neither option suits your family’s needs, email GTCYS’ Program Assistant Katie Heilman at katie@gtcys.org – we are happy to work with you to create a suitable option.

If paying with a credit card, either in full or on a monthly basis, credit card fees will be calculated and added to your total upon paying. Credit card fees scale with tuition totals.

Retreat Fees

Families will pay the fall and winter retreat fees when registering for each retreat. The GTCYS office will email retreat registration information to families a few weeks before each retreat. The fee is $50 for fall and $50 for winter; reduced fees are available for tuition assistance recipients.

Sibling Discounts

GTCYS offers a sibling tuition discount in the amount of $75 per additional child enrolled (second sibling, third, etc.). You may subtract the sibling discount while paying with credit card (follow the instructions in the payment form), or when paying with check (follow the instructions on the check payment page).

Sibling discounts do not apply toward retreat fees. Email katie@gtcys.org with any questions.       

Tuition and Fees for Students Joining Mid-Year

Tuition amounts are adjusted for students starting in January. Second semester tuition is 60% of the annual tuition total.


As a non-profit organization, charitable contributions from GTCYS families, alumni, and the community create meaningful experiences for students and expand access for young musicians from all backgrounds. Unlike many other extracurricular programs, we will never ask families to sell goods or directly fundraise. Going above and beyond with a charitable gift directly supports your own child’s experience and helps provide more than $100,000 in tuition assistance so that students can experience the lifelong benefits of a GTCYS education. To make a tax-deductible gift, visit gtcys.org/donate. Thank you!

Tuition Assistance

We are deeply committed to access and equity so all interested students can benefit from the GTCYS experience regardless of ability to pay. Tuition assistance and support for private lessons are based on demonstrated financial need using a confidential application process. 

Given the ongoing impact of COVID-19, GTCYS continues to expand tuition assistance to meet increased need. We encourage all families experiencing financial hardship to apply, especially if cost is a determining factor for participation.


  • Tuition assistance is offered for all of GTCYS’ programs including school-year orchestras, summer programs, tours, and special activities; support for private lessons is also granted (see below).
  • Assistance is based on a sliding scale, which considers household income, number of children living at home, and special circumstances such as job loss, health crises, and unexpected expenses.
  • Families who qualify for tuition assistance typically include:
    • Families who qualify for the Federal Free or Reduced-Price School Meals program may typically pay 3% -10% of GTCYS tuition/fees.
    • Families who report gross adjusted incomes of $80,000 or less may typically pay 50-75% of GTCYS tuition/fees. Extenuating circumstances are considered even for higher income levels, and award amounts may fluctuate year to year based on demand.
  • More than 120 students typically receive tuition assistance for GTCYS’ programs each year.
  • We anticipate awarding $100,000 in tuition assistance for our 2022-23 programs.
  • Families with multiple children in GTCYS may complete one application for all children
  • Customized payment plans are available for all GTCYS families upon request, regardless of tuition assistance status.


To complete GTCYS’ Tuition Assistance Application, you’ll need the following items:

  • If possible: Copy of your last year’s Federal income tax return (form 1040) or similar income verification.
  • If applicable: Written verification from your school district of your Free or Reduced Price School Meals program status.
  • If applicable: Documentation that verifies unemployment
  • Statement of Financial Need: A brief letter describing your circumstances and need for tuition assistance.
  • Click here to apply for tuition assistance

Accessibility and Inclusivity at GTCYS

To provide more comprehensive support, we also provide:

  • Sponsored Lessons: GTCYS students who receive tuition assistance may apply for this program, which matches students with a private teacher for weekly half-hour lessons paid by GTCYS.
  • Reduced-Price Concert Tickets: Although most GTCYS concerts are free, families who receive tuition assistance can purchase reduced-price tickets to ticketed performances.
  • Concert Attire:If purchasing concert attire is financially prohibitive, GTCYS will assist in finding necessary clothing.
  • Reduced-Price Audition Fee: A $5 option (instead of the regular $40 fee) is available on the registration form for families who need it.
  • Activity Fees: Lower priced options are available for extra GTCYS activities, such as orchestra social events, day trips, and special projects.
  • Tour Assistance: Financial assistance is available for Symphony’s biennial international tours using an application process.

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