New Horizons

Program Overview and Philosophy

The New Horizons Program began in 1991 at the Eastman School of Music under the guidance of Roy Ernst, now Professor Emeritus from that school. Since that time, the idea has been adopted throughout the U. S. and in Canada, resulting in the forming of more than 100 organizations.

In Fall 2020, the Eastman-Rochester New Horizons Program will operate its programs online for the safety of members and conductors. This fall we are also charging a flat tuition rate of $100 for an “all you can play” experience. Each member who pays this tuition may participate in any appropriate ensemble that he or she chooses. Please reach out directly to ensemble directors with specific questions or contact the ECMS Office at

While New Horizons was designed in particular for senior adults, there is no minimum or maximum age or ability requirement. All are welcome, especially beginners. Members include those with little or no experience, those who have postponed participating in an ensemble due to career and family, and seasoned musicians. All agree that New Horizons is a community of music-makers flourishing in a non-competitive, collaborative, and supportive environment.

The Rochester (NY) program includes beginning, intermediate and advanced bands, a Big Band, beginning strings, full and string orchestras, a chorus, and several chamber ensembles.

The Rochester program is part of the New Horizons International Music Association (NHIMA), which offers benefits that include reduced rates at music camps for individual NHIMA members. For more information about NHIMA, go to

Link to New Horizons Website including summer concert schedule:

New Horizons Vintage Jazz at the CGI Rochester International Jazz Festival, 2019 - Thom Bell, Photographer

New Horizons Member Handbooks