Costa Mesa California, Summer Music Camp

The Collective Sound Academy

For 2016, The Collective Sound Summer Music Academy will be held in Costa Mesa, centrally located to Southern California. Students stay at a local university and practice at Sound Matrix rehearsal studios used by some of the biggest artists in the industry. Young musicians also record at the state-of-the-art Hybrid Studios.

Costa Mesa is located in Orange County, famous for its  warm climate and beaches with more than 40 miles (64 km) of coastline. Because of its close proximity to Los Angeles and San Diego, many well known bands, film and media companies are all in close proximity. Field trips to world class studios, labels and venues make for a really unique summer camp experience.


  • Session Dates: June 26 – July 15
  • Ages: 12 – 18
  • Tuition, Housing & Food: As low as $ 1,228/Week
  • Work With Talented Young Musicians From Around The World
  • Write and Perform Original Music
  • Record In A Professional Studio
  • Shoot A Music Video With Your Band
  • Enjoy Festivals and Rock Shows
  • Visit Orange County Beaches
  • Explore The Art of Los Angeles & Orange County
  • Visit Historic Landmarks and Sites
  • Field trips to world renowned music industry businesses

Program Details

The first week young musicians will with their band  to write 2 original songs.
Emphasis: Creative collaboration, team building, problem solving, musicianship and songwriting

  • Musicians are placed into bands based on their musical interest, instrument(s), and level of experience
  • A “Band Manager” is assigned to each group to guide the song writing process as necessary and help distill form and instrumentation
  • Workshops and guest speakers  (past examples include: do-it-yourself promotion, home recording, electronic music, ins-and-outs of the music industry and composition)
  • Open mic nights, beach, sightseeing and shows

Recording / Music Video / Photoshoot / Band Page
Songs are finished! Now musicians prepare to go into the studio. Additionally, each band will create a band page online, do a band photo shoot and film a music video.
Emphasis: Recording techniques, band promotion, and music video

  • Each band will track, mix and master one of their original songs with the help of their band manager and a producer in a professional recording studio
  • Bands will write a music video treatment for the song they recorded and will have the opportunity to shoot their own video with our staff
  • Bands will also develop a few concepts for photoshoots and select locations around the city
  • Create a band page with photos and upload completed songs (Facebook or similar band page)
  • Open mic nights, beach, sightseeing and shows

Bands take their act on the road to play live shows
Emphasis: Performing live in front of an audience

  • Bands perform their two original songs for a live audience at all-ages venues
  • Learn the many aspects of touring including traveling as a band, backline setups, sound checks and self promotion
  • Traveling for additional opportunities for field trips to music industry related businesses i.e. labels, radio stations, publications and studios.
  • Beach, sightseeing and shows

Photo Gallery

Featured Video

All TCS Academy music videos: TCS YouTube Channel >


Summer Music Camp Cost

2016 TuitionFull Tuition

$ 4,095

Per MonthTuition costs include the program, housing and food

Before 4/15 - 5%

$ 3890

1297 a weekPay in full by 4/15 and save 5%

Before 3/15 (EXTENDED - 4/1) - 10%

$ 3685

1228 a weekPay in full by March 15th  (EXTENDED – 4/1) to save 10%

2016 TuitionFull Tuition

$ 4,095

Per MonthTuition costs include the program, housing and food

Before 4/15 - 5%

$ 3890

Per MonthPay in full by 4/15 and save 5%

Before 3/15 (EXTENDED - 4/1) - 10%

$ 3685

Summer 2016Pay in full by March 15th  (EXTENDED – 4/1) to save 10%

A minimum $1,500 nonrefundable deposit must be made to reserve the a place within the TCS session. If a deposit is placed, full payment must be received by May 15.

Tuition covers all accommodation, food, activities, linens, and back line. Students are required to bring their own instrument, our rehearsal spaces do have some instruments available for rent, please contact us for additional info and pricing. Tuition does not cover flights to and from TCS.

Additional Information

Travel Planning

(SNA) John Wayne Airport  is the closest airport (5 minutes). We provide airport pickup at SNA, please send us arrival information once you have booked your travel. You can also fly into (LGB) Long Beach Airport (25 minutes) or (LAX) Los Angeles International Airport (45 minutes). Shuttles (i.e. Super Shuttle), Uber, Lyft, and curbside taxis are all available to transport you to the dorms.

Arrival: Registration is from 2:00-7:30pm Sunday afternoon, please plan your flight arrival time accordingly. Please make sure young musicians traveling long distances have cash for breakfast or lunch if required. Dinner will be provided Sunday evening. If early arrival is required please contact us to make arrangements. Additional fees will apply and will be added to your registration costs.

Departure: Please plan your departure flights for the morning between 8am-12pm Friday morning. The students final show is held in the afternoon/evening of the last Thursday of camp. If you prefer to pick them up from the show, we will get them checked out and have them bring their bags with them.

Airport Pickup/Dropoff: If students require someone to meet them or drop them off at LAX or LGB airport,  we are happy to send one of out staff to do so via arranged car. An additional fee can simply be added to your registration cost. Please contact us to make further arrangements.

Traveling With Instruments: Most international flights and some domestic, allow for instruments to be carried on (guitars, bass, wind, etc.) Please check with regulations of your selected airline before traveling.

What To Bring

  • Headphones (earbud/ipod type is fine)
  • Instrument Requirements
    Practice Rooms and Recording studios are equipped with backline: amps and PA (mic, mixing board and speakers)
    Guitarists/Bassists – please bring your guitar and cable, case, extra strings, strap, and picks (Optional items: effects pedals)
    Drummers – A couple pairs of sticks, brushes and your cymbals (Optional items: preferred kick pedal, percussion pieces or double bass pedal)
    Keyboard/Piano – Keys players should bring a keyboard if they have one, if you need to rent one they are available from La Nau for an hourly rate, please contact us for more information.
    Wind/Strings – If your string instrument is electric please bring your instrument cable. Otherwise be prepared to match volume or play through a mic.
    Electronic/Drum Machines – Please bring your devices/laptop and the necessary RCA or  necessary cable to run it into the PA.
    Singers – a smile. (Optional items: preferred mic)
  • Pencil or pen and a note pad
  • Clothes for hot/warm weather Barcelona is Hot in Summer and comfortable shoes. Bringing 3 weeks worth of clothes is unnecessary,
    there will be laundry facilities on site. Any special clothes or accessories wanted for the photoshoot, music video shoot, and performances. Beach clothes/swimsuit for the beach and pool (Don’t forget SUNSCREEN).
  • “Petty Cash” for gifts, extra snacks (La Nau has a full cafe at our rehearsal space), personal purchases, laundry (card operated), optional movie theatre nights, etc.
  • Personal Hygiene: Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Soap, Shampoo, Deodorant, etc. Please bring all needed toiletries. (Also hair dryer,
    curling or straightening iron for girls, if needed.)
  • Linens are provided, but bring a towel for the beach or pool.
  • Any necessary international outlet adaptor(s) if from outside the US. (Europe or UK to USA adaptors)
  • Cellphones, iPods, and laptops are allowed in dorms only and are considered a privilege that will be revoked if abused. Please be prepared to store them safely. TCS will NOT be responsible for lost or stolen items.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are TCS attendees ever left unsupervised?
Attendees of TCS are supervised 24 hours a day and not permitted to go out on their own.

How are the students supervised?
The ratio of students to staff is 1 staff person per every 5 students (1:5 ratio)

Are there lifeguards at pool and at beaches?
Most all beachs and pools we visit have lifeguards.

Is there camp/campus security?
Dorm facilities generally have security onsight. Our student counselor ratio is always 1:5.

Do the counselers know CPR?
Several staff persons at TCS are trained in CPR

What is the age range of students?
The mean age is 15 years old, the majority of students are 14-16 years of age

How old do you have to be to attend the program?
We have found that 12 is the ideal age to begin attending TCS, however in some cases 11 year olds have been allowed to attend if showing maturity/talent.

What if you’re just learning to play your instrument?
Students are placed into bands that can accommodate their current stage of musical development

What level do you need to play at for the academy?
We do not have an “instrument proficiency level” requirement for our program and have students at all levels. Generally students have been playing 1-2 yrs and have a basic grasp of their instrument and music theory. Our focus is primarily on the creative process through collaboration through the writing of original music at what ever level the students are currently proficient. Based on the registration questionnaire and any video they submit we place them in bands accordingly.

Do you allow parental visits?
Parents are welcome to visit at anytime, we just ask that you notify the program director in advance.

Do you provide transportation?
Transportation to and from our program is not included in the registration cost. During the program and for our tour week transportation is included in the cost of the program.

How many students are there?
Programs are limited to 35 attendees to maximize the quality of the experience, an average program size is 25.

How do I register for the program?
You can register online or by mailing in a completed registration application

How do I pay my child’s tuition?
You can pay by major credit card, check or wire transfer

What should I pack my son/daughter for camp?
We suggest bringing at least one weeks worth of clothing as laundry facilities are provided. For tour we ask that you send a small bag or backpack to bring on the bus as space can be limited for instruments and luggage. (See our “What to Bring” section)

Is the tuition refundable?
Deposits are not refundable. In most cases tuition is not refundable. In the case that a program is canceled by TCS full refunds on deposits and tuition would be issued.

Are the counselors musically trained?
Counselors are generally multi instrumentalists who are currently writing and performing in live bands.

Is there vegetarian/vegan food options for my child while at camp?
Yes, we can accommodate special dietary needs and in extreme cases there may be additional costs. Please contact us for additional information.

What does my child do with their medication while at camp?
Students are not allowed to keep any medication or prescriptions in their room. All medication must be given to the program director on arrival.

How long has The Collective Sound been around?
TCS founded by Zac Smith in 1998 at CSU, Chico in California (USA). To this day he remains the operating executive director.

Do the students have to audition?
Auditions are not required but highly recommended as they are used for band placement. It is important for program directors to have a good sense of the ability level and personality of attendees as band assignments are made before arriving on campus.

How do you choose what band students are in?
Students are placed by the answers given on the registration application and by their audition videos. Considerations are age, interests, ability, and personality.

Are boys and girls separated during camp?
Boys and girls are separated by building or floor and are not allowed in each others rooms under any circumstances.