CPP Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Community Performances and Partnerships Program (CPP)? What does Community Engagement mean?

Community engagement refers to performances and educational activities that take place in community settings for a wide range of audiences. The primary purpose of these activities is the education and enrichment of the audience, along with an interaction between performer and listeners. The Community Performances and Partnerships Program (CPP Program) is the title of the program that has been created at NEC to link students with the greater Boston community, while meeting the needs of a diverse range of community partners.

In what kinds of places will CPP Program events take place?

Our community partners range from nursing homes, senior centers, homeless shelters and libraries to Boston Public Schools, after school programs and preschool centers. The majority of our partnerships are with organizations in the greater Boston area. Many community engagement events take place in neighborhoods that are near NEC or easily accessible by public transportation. 

Why might I want to get involved?

In this day and age, the ability to engage with a broad spectrum of audiences, as well as to perform and teach in diverse settings is an integral part of every career in the music field. Whether you go on to become a solo artist, an orchestral musician, a music teacher, or follow a career path outside of music, the experience of performing or teaching in your community will be both an asset to your career and personally enriching. Students who have participated in the CPP Program find it inspiring, thought-provoking, and refreshing to perform outside the walls of NEC and to connect with community members all over the greater Boston area.

How often can I be involved?

You can be involved as little or as much as you like. This program is designed to be flexible and fit with your schedule and interests. Some students may want to be involved on a weekly or monthly basis; others may want to occasionally participate. Students who are interested in more intensive involvement in the program may apply for one of the five CPP Fellowship Programs. These competitive fellowships require a commitment to a particular number/type of community performances, along with mandatory meetings, training sessions, and evaluation. Students participating in CPP fellowships receive compensation for their involvement.

How does the system work?

Initially, you will need to sign up for the CPP E-list, either at NEC’s orientation or at any time throughout the year. Through this e-mail list, you will receive updates regarding community performance opportunities, along with fellowship information, grants, and other community engagement related information. You may also make an appointment to meet with a CPP staff member at any time in order to coordinate a plan for the year, which may include applying for a CPP Fellowship. 

I have never participated in a Community Outreach performance before. Will I receive guidance and training?

All performances in the CPP program are organized and guided through the CPP Department, and no previous experience is necessary to participate. CPP staff members will work with you to design an effective community engagement program, and make you feel as comfortable as possible interacting with audiences of different ages in diverse settings. Workshops with guest educators and performing artists will also be held throughout the year.

Will I have to talk to the audience at a CPP event?

Yes! Talking to and interacting with the audience is an integral part of most CPP events. CPP staff members are available to help with public speaking skills as you prepare for your program.

Do I need to be a member of an ensemble to participate?

Individuals, duos, and ensembles are all welcome to participate in the CPP Program.

Will I get paid for community performances?

Volunteer performances offered through the CPP Program are considered community service activities and are not paid. However, there are occasionally paid performances that become available, especially in conjunction with some of our partnering concert series. Students who are interested in a more extensive outreach experience may apply for one of the CPP Fellowship programs, which does include an honorarium payment upon completion of the fellowship.

How will I get there? Will my transportation costs be covered?

The CPP Program covers all transportation costs and arrangements to performance sites that are not easily accessible by public transportation. Students who use their own cars to travel for a CPP event will be reimbursed for mileage.


Where can I go for more information?

Visit the Community Performances and Partnerships Program Offices in St. Botolph 201. You can also contact: