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California Music Center

We support exceptional early-career classical players, assisting them with the development of professional and performance skills, encouraging their community involvement, and providing them performance opportunities and monetary support.


CMC was founded in 1974 by Irving M. Klein, a virtuoso chamber musician and master cello teacher, as the sponsoring organization for a summer music institute and chamber music series for young artists. Following Mr. Klein’s passing in 1985, CMC inaugurated the Irving M. Klein International String Competition in 1986; since then, the Klein has become one of the most prestigious events of its kind, attracting entries from throughout the world and helping to enhance the developing careers of players who have gone on to become renowned soloists, chamber musicians, teachers, and prominent members of the world’s finest orchestras.