Usdan Center for the Creative and Performing Arts is the nation’s preeminent not-for-profit summer day school of the arts. Now entering its 46th season, Usdan has been declared a “Best Of” camp by TimeOutNY/Kids, and by NY Metro Parents, and the Center has been profiled in feature articles in The New York Times and in Time Magazine. Usdan’s mission is to provide children with the arts as a lifetime companion. This mission is realized through the inspiration of a world-class faculty and the camaraderie of fellow students whose bond is their love of the arts.
Usdan is situated on a 200-acre woodland campus in Huntington, Long Island. Each summer, 1,600 students, ages 6-18, travel to Usdan daily on buses that depart from neighborhoods throughout the New York metropolitan area. The Center offers 40 programs of study, including Orchestra, Band, Chorus, Jazz Studies, Guitar, Chamber Music, and Piano in the Music Department; Ballet, Modern, Jazz, and Tap Dance in the Dance Department; Musical Theater, Drama, and Technical Theater in the Theater Arts Department; Painting, Ceramics, Sculpture, Photography, Jewelry, Video Arts, Cartooning, Video Game Design, Animation, Fashion Design, and Illustration and Book Design in the Art Department; Nature and Ecology, and Organic Gardening in the Nature Department; and additional programs in creative writing and in chess. A special feature of the program is each student’s attendance at Usdan’s daily series of Festival Concerts. These are presented by distinguished artists of the world, and past performers include Yo-Yo Ma, James Galway, Tokyo String Quartet, Emanuel Ax, Canadian Brass, André Watts, the Heath Brothers, New York City Ballet, the Limon Dance Company, and stars of Broadway shows. Usdan’s 40,000 alumni include actors Natalie Portman, Jackie Hoffman, Olivia Thirlby, Stacey London, and Lisa Gay Hamilton; singers Jane Monheit, Taylor Dayne, and Mariah Carey; Tony-Award winning playwright Michele Lowe, Grammy-Award winning producer Adam Abeshouse, Broadway personality Seth Rudetsky, Juilliard conductor Adam Glaser, and members of major American orchestras, dance and theater companies.
The Center’s Long Island campus houses 70 studios and theaters, many of which have won international architectural awards. These include Usdan’s campus center, The McKinley Amphitheater for Music and Dance, a 1,000-seat state of the art theater that houses the Festival Concerts.
The Center provides programs for students regardless of advancement. Admission is based on interest. Applications are accepted from children from ages 6 to 18. Some programs may require an audition and/or interview. The Center welcomes students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin. Usdan is a beneficiary agency of UJA-Federation of New York.
Daily Transportation to and from the Center is by bus (required).
The Center’s Season is June 24 through August 9, 2013, for the 7-week program; June 24 through July 19, 2012, for the 4-week program; July 22 through August 9, 2013, for the 3-week program. The Center is open Monday through Friday. Students are enrolled for either the 7-week, 4-week, or 3-week programs. No fee reductions are made for absences. (Closed Thursday, July 4, 2013.)
Fees and Tuition
$3,425 for the 7-week Program ($3,925 for Theater Arts, Video Arts, Video Game Art and Design.) $2,925 for the 4-week Program. $2,310 for the 3-week Program. A tuition deposit of $500 is required at the time of application, with the balance of fees due by April 30, 2013. Daily bus transportation, Registration and Insurance fees are additional. No gratuities are expected or permitted.
Content of Daily Program
(The order of your classes will be different.)
- 10:00 am: Start classes
- 2 periods: Major interest activity (i.e. ballet, band, orchestra, etc.)
- 1 period: Minor interest activity (i.e. recreation, painting, etc.)
- 1 period: Assembly
- 1 period: Lunch
- 1 period: Swimming
- 3:05 pm: Students depart from studio for buses.
- 3:30 pm: Bus Dismissal
You are required to bring your own lunch. We suggest that you pack it in an insulated bag with a freezer pack to protect it. You will be served, without charge, a snack at 3:05 (there is no place to buy anything to eat at the Center). Should you lose or forget your lunch, come to the administration building. We always have something on hand for you.
You may wear clothing of your choice. You will need a swimming suit and a towel. The suit should be dried at home each day and the towel changed for a clean one. Since it will rain some days, bring along a raincoat and dress appropriately for the wet weather. We suggest that you carry your extra things in a tote bag or backpack marked with your name. We also recommend that you wear comfortable shoes or sneakers, not flip flops. In addition to these items, dancers will need:
- For Ballet Girls: Black leotard, pink tights and pink ballet slippers
- For Ballet Boys: Black tights, black ballet slippers, white shirt
- For Modern: Black leotard, tan footless tights, black shorts, leggings or tights. Boys may wear white or black tops with black shorts
- For Tap: Tap shoes
- For Jazz: Oxford jazz shoes
- For Dance Adventure: Oxford jazz shoes
All dancers may wish to bring an extra towel each day. Theater students will need clothes specified by their teachers on the opening days. Art students may wish to consider using a smock to protect their clothes.
You will need a white shirt or blouse, black pants or skirt, and black dress shoes for concert attire.
Checking for Instruments
For the convenience of musicians, the Center provides daytime and overnight checking storage for instruments in Building M24. All instruments offered for checking must be in protective cases which are marked with your name. This checking service is free of charge.
Student Performance Schedule:
Parents will receive a calendar of performances in late June.
Health and Safety
A Health Office and the services of a Registered Nurse are available for students in need of emergency care. In order to provide proper emergency care, a Health Record-Physical Examination Form and an Emergency Medical Authorization Form must be on file for you no later than the orientation day. Parents and family physicians should note, in the appropriate spaces, any medical situation or medications you are taking, that might come to the attention of the Center’s Nurse during the season. Please note that students are not to carry medications with them at the Center. Medications, with a doctor’s orders, are held and dispensed by the Nurse at the Center’s Health Office.
Rain or Shine
The Center will be open every weekday, regardless of weather. For possible emergency changes, look on the homepage of Usdan's website: www.usdan.com.