IES Abroad Milan – Music: Voice, Composition & Instrumental

COVID-19 Program Updates

Due to global health & safety concerns and travel restrictions related to the coronavirus, IES Abroad has decided to offer flexible booking options for some of their upcoming programs. Learn more about COVID-19 updates to stay tuned regarding program information.

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About

From ancient Ambrosian chants to cutting-edge multi-media installations, Italy has always been at the forefront of musical innovation. As a music student in Milan, you have the opportunity to work with world-class musicians, soak up the local music scene, perform at a variety of venues, and attend a wide range of performances.

Whether you’re fluent in Italian or you can only say ciao, you are welcomed with open arms by the IES Abroad Milan Center staff. At the Center, there is a full range of opportunities for instrumentalists, vocalists, composers, and performance majors, and partnerships with the Civica Scuola di Musica, the Conservatorio G. Verdi, La Verdi Symphonic Choir and Orchestra and more!

In Milan, you get an education tailored specifically to your musical needs and interests. Enjoy being surrounded by some of the world’s top musicians and educators—including the Center Director who is an active composer and music scholar whose pieces are performed worldwide!

Scholarships

IES Abroad Scholarships
IES Abroad Scholarships and Financial Aid

As far as we're concerned, financial limitations shouldn't prevent you from studying abroad with us. That's why we offer more than $5 million in scholarships and aid.

Value
$500 - $5,000

Questions & Answers

Reviews

9.26 Rating
based on 19 reviews
  • Academics 7.9
  • Support 9
  • Fun 8.9
  • Housing 8.7
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 8 of 19
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Kandise
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I found my voice abroad!

Patrizia (the voice teacher) is caring and very informative in recomending rep. Truly, studying with her infinitely changed my voice-- for the better! As well, there are plenty of performance opportunities, even if you are not in an ensemble or performance class. As well, the Italian classes were informative about Milanese culture and Italian history. The upper level classes are engaging and thought provoking. Some of the classes in other disciplines are very easy and feel like introductory classes, even though they are marketed as upper level courses. The IES Abroad faculty and staff are caring and considerate towards any mental or physical health issues you may run into!

What would you improve about this program?
Some of the classes in other disciplines are very easy and feel like introductory classes, even though they are marketed as upper level courses. As well, students living in the Collegio di Milano were not provided a singular Community Assistant, so maneuvering the city was difficult in the beginning
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Sally
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The Best Semester of My Life!

My experience at the IES Milan - Music: Voice, Composition, and Instrumental program was life-changing, filled with amazing opportunities to learn about Italian music, language, culture, and social issues. I studied opera there and received the finest instruction from music professors like Patrizia Zanardi, Anna Fre, and Stefano Pintor. I was able to apply what I had learned in recitals and one-act operas that my fellow students and I presented at IES.. Not only that, but I was also able to learn by attending five La Scala opera productions, four of which were paid for by IES. My Staging Italian Opera class also got to observe a rehearsal at La Scala for Mozart's Idomeneo and tour the opera house's workshops. These opportunities shaped my abroad experience, and I am very grateful to IES for having provided them.

Not only was my music education wonderful, but my other classes were stellar also. For example, I took Service Learning and gained insight into the European migration crisis by volunteering at the Municipality of Milan's immigration office, putting the skills I was learning in the seminar (and in my advanced Italian class) to action. I also volunteered as an English tutor to the social worker I shadowed at this office, helping him better serve the English-speaking migrants who came to the office.

I found all of the staff at IES Milan to be extremely helpful. Whenever I had a question about anything, whether it involved an upcoming IES-sponsored trip or a personal health concern, they always answered my questions and showed that they cared about me. I felt that I was in very good hands for the entire semester.

I lived in a homestay with a very kind and loving Milanese family, and I wouldn't trade that experience for anything, as it was so fun to have younger Italian siblings and to truly immerse myself in the Italian language. My homestay became my home away from home, and in difficult moments I was so grateful to have Italian parents to give me homemade gelato. And the food was incomparable, of course! Nothing in this world is better than a home-cooked Italian meal.

I hope that anyone who reads this will be able to study at IES Milan, especially if you are an undergraduate music student. It was the best semester of my life!

What would you improve about this program?
Really the only thing that would have made the experience better for me would have been to feel better connected with the other IES students at the start of the program. Not having any roommates and living 35 minutes away from the IES center made socialization somewhat more difficult at the beginning of the semester, and I think my experience was similar to those of other homestay students in Milan. However, I made incredible friendships once I settled in and got my bearings, and I still stay in touch with them to this day! Also, the city of Milan itself has so much to do. There is never an end to the fun activities that students can pursue.
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Noelle
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Short Italian Life

My experience with the IES Abroad Program in Milan, Italy was absolutely incredible! When I first started to look through my university's study abroad programs, I didn't see many for music. So when a friend pointed out IES Abroad's music programs in Vienna and Milan, I was immediately excited. Both Italy and Vienna can be considered birthplaces for music, as many important composers of the past were born or have worked there. I knew I couldn't pass these experiences up. Many of my friends also decided to apply to the same program, which made it even more exciting. The months after we were all accepted were a whirlwind. Finally, the day came to leave for Milan.
Arriving in Milan, I felt anxious but excited overall. When I arrived at the apartment where I would spend the next 3 month of my life, I was really impressed. The housing was in a really nice area with a historical landmark just down the street. My CA was also very welcoming and friendly.
Most of my classes were at the IES Abroad Center, except for my music lesson and orchestra. The teachers were all very friendly and very willing to help, especially my Italian Language professor. I really enjoyed every class I took, and I can say that I learned a lot in each class. Don't expect to be able to coast through the semester just because you're abroad.
Overall, I truly had a wonderful time in Milan, and I miss it every day, especially now since I am back at my home university. The memories I have mad in Milan will stay with me and throughout my life.

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Charlotte
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A Whole New World

This was my very first time out of the United States and my first time even being on a plan. I knew that it was everything was going to be a new experience, but I did not anticipate the emotions I would feel. Being a young black woman surrounded by Italians was quite overwhelming in the beginning. Our program told us that Italians do have a staring problem, but I felt like it was on a whole other level! I knew that because I would be experiencing a lot of new things (food, fashion, art, and traveling), i specially choose a course of study that I knew that I would enjoy. Through all of the struggles and stress that I experienced abroad, being apart of the music program kept me happy and upbeat. The things that I was going through did not matter once I enter the class room, it was rehearsal time. I had amazing opportunities to perform around Milan, Italy and had amazing professors that worked had worked in conservatoires prior to this program. I was getting a high quality music lessons and gained more experience with preforming. With everything new and moving around me, music never failed to keep me grounded. I am so glad that I had the opportunity to be apart of this program.

What would you improve about this program?
Make sure that CA's are in contact with their students at all time. I feel like m CA was not there for me in the beginning of my stay or throughout.
Make sure you are truly comfortable in your living situation
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Jordan
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

BEST SEMESTER EVER

How can I begin to describe my semester abroad? This was by far the best semester of my life. There's just something about moving to Italy for 4 months that changes everything you ever thought you knew. Don't get me wrong, it was absolutely terrifying to pack up your whole life into two suitcases and move across the world. From the beginning, I knew it would be worth it because of the wonderful people at IES Abroad. I was kept informed every step of the way. From the predeparture checklist, to help with the Visa, to personal emails from the staff, I was nothing but impressed with IES. Once I got to Italy, the IES Milan staff put together a week long orientation that helped to create the friendships that have lasted past my time in the program, inspire confidence in the program, and ensure that I made the correct decision. But, beside all of that, the bets part of IES Milan were the professors. I took 5 classes in Milan and I couldn't wait to go to each of them each week. I was pushed harder than I ever have and it absolutely paid off. Another great part of this program were the field trips. I participated in the trips to Parma and to Sienna. During these trips I got to know the staff and the students on a more personal level and I got to explore places I never would have thought to go. I have absolutely nothing but good things to say about IES Abroad Milan. I can honestly say my life has been changed for the better because of this program.

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Claire
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great Musical Opportunities

Studying abroad can be a challenge for music students because there are fewer options in terms of viable study abroad programs. Thankfully, I found IES Abroad Milan's music program online and was able to attend for this past semester. I received such an incredible musical education in my semester here. Not only was the academic perspective excellent (I learned so much in my History of Italian Opera course), but there were also ample performance opportunities in the form of both concerts and opera pastiche. The caliber of the instructors was extremely high. Additionally, the program provided us with complimentary tickets to La Scala when possible, which enriched our musical education enormously by allowing us to observe performances at the highest professional and musical levels. I have made so many lasting professional and personal connections through my time at IES Abroad, and I cannot recommend this program highly enough!

What would you improve about this program?
The program could acquire more practice space in future semesters
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Calvin
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Fantastic Instruction and Cultural Immersion

From the start, I was absolutely blown away by the quality of instruction which was afforded to me by the program. Having practically taught myself how to play the saxophone, it was quite the change to have someone of such caliber provide me with private instruction. Some of the things I've learnt this semester I will carry with me for many many years to come. On top of getting a whole semester to focus on my saxophone playing and musicianship, I felt like I was also able to fully immerse myself in the culture through the various activities as well as living and commuting so close to the city center. I was also able to volunteer at a local soup kitchen through the Service Learning seminar, which greatly enhanced my experience and exposure to local Italians.

What would you improve about this program?
I feel like the support during the pre-departure period could be worked on a little bit, as I found the whole visa obtaining process to be quite stressful and I know many other friends who also found it that way. It would also be cool to have even more chances to meet local Italians and opportunities to be immersed in the culture.
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Deanna
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Studying Music in Milano

My time studying Milan, Italy with IES Abroad was a once in a lifetime opportunity. Many music students don't think study abroad is possible due to the rigid course programs set by their home schools, but IES abroad Milan- Music: Tradition and Innovation makes it possible by being extremely customizable. I was able to work one on one with an Italian professor toward fulfilling a music theory credit required by my home university and got a unique perspective while doing so.

Not only does the IES Abroad Milan staff do a great job of finding amazing teachers to work with their music students, but they do an amazing job of placing students in great living situations. There are options to live with Italian host families or to stay in beautiful apartments, most of which are right in the middle of the city. I personally stayed with an extraordinary family that took me in as one of their own and taught me how to live life at a slower pace and how to truly appreciate the small things in life. Most importantly, my host family taught me the importance of bilingualism. My host dad didn't speak the best English, but on nights where it was just him and I for dinner, we were able to have full conversations using my broken Italian and his broken English. It was a beautiful example of how learning just a little bit of another language can connect you with people you would have otherwise never been able to connect with.

Milan is a city rich in culture and especially music as it is home to many amazing composers and the world renowned Teatro alla Scala. I saw many beautifully staged operas there thanks to the IES Abroad Milan and the classes I was taking. I was also able to see my favorite opera singer in recital while I lived there which was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will cherish forever.

If you are a music student interested in studying abroad, I would say definitely look into IES Abroad Milan- Music: Tradition and Innovation as they can offer a customizable experience that surrounds you with knowledgeable professors in a city that is rich with music and culture where you can further invest in your future as a musician.

What would you improve about this program?
The only thing I can say that would need to be "fixed" would be communication to the music students and timing of planning. However, that is coming from an American point of view where we expect events and rehearsals to be communicated way in advance, but what I learned in my time living as an Italian would things are slower to come to fruition and more times than not are put together at the last minute. There was definitely a learning curve when it came to this.