Study Abroad

“I was able to experience the best of both worlds: to enjoy Princeton’s incredible liberal arts education, and to try out a conservatory setting in one glorious, music-focused semester. I spent an unforgettable few months studying piano at the Royal College of Music, and my time there only confirmed that I absolutely want to devote my life to music.”

– Dasha Koltunyuk ’15

In addition to incorporating performance into your studies on campus, you can immerse in music abroad through several programs at prestigious musical institutions across the world. Study for a semester at the renowned Royal College of Music in London—and then complete an accelerated Masters Degree at the conservatory in as short as twelve months after graduating from Princeton. You can also spend a summer learning directly from actors and musicians from the Shanghai Peking Opera Company, or from leading pianists in Italy at the Imola Academy.

A semester of music immersion in a conservatory setting for highly talented performance students, with the possibility of an accelerated Masters of Music degree from the Royal College of Music. This program is open to students regardless of their major.

The Royal College of Music
 gives students the opportunity for professional training within an overall liberal arts framework, plus the experience of living in one of the world’s most vibrant music capitals. Musically gifted students who want a strong academic experience and who are undecided about whether or not to enter the professional music world will find this program particularly useful.

Students spend the Fall semester of their junior year in London as full-time participants at the Royal College of Music. The program of study is tailored to fit each discipline, whether vocal, instrumental or, composition. The Principal Study for all is studio lessons with Royal College of Music faculty. Courses in other areas include music literature, aesthetics and criticism, ear-training, stylistic studies, diction and language (for singers), ensemble work and master classes. At the end of the term students play a jury exam. Depending on the grade, they may be highly encouraged or invited to come back to work towards an accelerated Master’s Degree after finishing their Princeton studies in as little as 12 months.

Students seeking a boost into graduate study in performance find this an ideal platform from which to work. Students who are considering going for a Masters in performance, but who are not yet sure of taking that step, often find clarity through this program. And gifted students who have no career aspirations in, but no less passion for music, use the experience as a joyous immersion as a pre-professional musician. 

Students should contact the Director of the Program in Music Performance by December 1 of the sophomore year for information on auditioning. Auditions are with Princeton Performance Faculty, sometimes in video consultation with Royal College of Music faculty. 

Students should also follow the Study Abroad protocol through the Office of International Programs:

  1. Make an appointment to see a study abroad advisor to discuss your interest in this program. Find your dedicated advisor here.
  2. Once you confirm that the nomination has been completed after a successful audition, you will receive application instructions directly from your program or your study abroad advisor. 
  3. Complete the study abroad application items in the Global Programs System by the listed deadline.

When planning for this intensive program, students should keep in mind that any departmental requirements for Fall term of the junior year must be attended to either before or after the semester abroad. Permission is required from the Director of Undergraduate Studies of the student’s concentration (with the exception of Music Major).

Read about the experiences of past students participating in this program:

The Princeton University Peking Opera Shanghai Immersion Program (POSIP) dates are to be determined.


The virtual program is 2 weeks long with at least 44 hours of class contact hours.

Actors from the Shanghai Peking Opera Company (SPOC) and the Shanghai Hongyimei Peking Opera Company (SHPOC) will provide instruction in how to perform famous excerpts from selected operas. Instructors last summer included famous actors Yihong Shi, Murong Fang, and Dun Wang. Teaching faculty for summer 2022 will be announced soon.

The language of instruction will be Mandarin Chinese. Generally, applicants should have had at least two years of college-level instruction in Mandarin or have gained equivalent skills in the spoken language.

Role-specific classes will meet for 3 hours per weekday for two weeks. In addition, there will be preparatory classes and multiple workshops on voice, language and history, Peking opera appreciation, and make-up.

Brought together by the Princeton, NJ-based Legacy Arts International, launch a cultural exchange that unites one of the hubs of modern composition and research with one of Italy’s most innovative pedagogical institutions.

The cultural exchange, conceived and facilitated by Legacy Arts International’s founder and leader, Cristina Altamura, will immerse piano students from Princeton University in the rich and intense environment of the Imola Academy, while introducing pianists at the Imola Academy to the highest levels of composition and musicology at Princeton University.