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Summer Camp

Our summer camp is a week-long program for girls ages 8-18.  Campers attend instrument lessons, form a band, collaboratively write an original song, participate in daily music and empowerment-related workshops, and perform with their band at a live showcase at the end of the week.

Camp is held at Oakland School for the Arts at 530 18th Street in Downtown Oakland. The camp is fully accessible with access to elevators. Camp runs Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm.Showcases will take place at the New Parish, 579 18th St, Oakland, on Saturday from 2-5pm. See detailed schedule below.

2017 Camp Dates

Session 1: June 12th - 16th, Showcase June 17th

Teen Week (ages 13 - 18): July 10th - 14th, Showcase July 15th

Session 3: July 24th - 28th, Showcase July 29th


Who May Apply For Camp

Bay Area Girls Rock Camp is open to self-identified girls aged 8-18. Although our camp centers the experiences of young women, we are committed to gender justice and creating an inclusive environment that supports a wide range of marginalized gender identities and expressions  --- we also serve gender expansive and non-binary youth. Our growing vision is Gender Inclusivity through Radical Love and Support.

Is Experience Required?

No music experience necessary! Enrollment is limited to 80 campers per session and registration is on a first-come, first-served basis.  Session 2 is Teen Week specifically for Junior High and High School students. During all sessions campers are divided into 2 age groups, we reserve 40 spots for each age group to ensure an equal distribution.


As we all know and have experienced, the cost of living has increased greatly in the Bay Area and beyond these past few years. In the last two years Bay Area Girls Rock Camp's office rent has increased by just under $500 and rental fees for our summer program have increased nearly $3,000. In order to offset these costs we will be raising tuition to $500 beginning in the summer of 2017. As always, financial aid is readily available. We have adjusted our financial aid guidelines to reflect the increased cost of living as well. Bay Area Girls Rock Camp is committed to keeping our programs accessible to all income brackets. Thank you for your continued support!

Tuition is $0-$500 sliding scale, with no one turned away for lack of funds. Full and partial financial aid is readily available. If you plan on applying for financial aid, please fill in the financial aid application in addition to the camper application so that we can determine your tuition amount.  Otherwise, full tuition is $500.


Applications for Summer 2017 are now available. Apply here: Summer 2017 Camper Application & Summer 2017 Financial Aid Application

Interested in volunteering at summer camp? Find out more on our volunteer page.

Program Details 

Camp Activities

  • Instrument instruction: Campers sign up to learn bass, drums, guitar, keyboards, or vocals, and attend daily lessons in small groups.  No musical experience is required and campers are grouped by experience level. We provide instruments for everyone (but campers are welcome to bring their own guitar or bass).
  • Band practice: Campers form bands with their peers on the first day of camp, and work together to collaboratively write an original song. Each band works with two female mentors (their "band managers") who provide guidance, encouragement and technical support throughout the songwriting process.
  • Workshops: Campers attend a different workshop each day, all geared toward self-expression and building confidence, while challenging gender stereotypes and addressing discrimination. Workshops may include Music Herstory, Zine & Comic Making, Screenprinting, Image & Identity, Healthy Relationships, Video-making, Songwriting, How to Book a Show, Self-Defense, Alternative Instruments and more.
  • Lunchtime Performances: Each day at lunch we invite a band or performer to play for the campers and talk afterward about their experience as musicians. In order to expose campers to new types of music and different performance styles, we invite musicians from a variety of genres.
  • Showcase: On Saturday afternoon, each band performs its original song at a live showcase, attended by 300-400 friends, family and adoring fans.

Sample Schedule

8:30-9:00: Camper Arrival & Check-in  (Arrive at 8:00 on Monday for initial check-in)
9:00-9:30: Morning Assembly
9:30-11:30: Instrument Instruction
11:30-12:30: Lunch & Live Performance
12:30-2:30: Loud Band Practice
2:30-3:00: Quiet Band Practice & Snack
3:00-4:30: Workshop
4:30-5:00: Afternoon Assembly/Open Mic/Presentation 

How To Apply

1. Please complete camper and financial aid applications.

2. Send your camper's Express Yourself piece: We want to know who you are and why you want to attend Girls Rock Camp. The Express Yourself piece can be in any format you choose, such as a letter, story, drawing, painting, song, video, collage, etc. The purpose of the piece is to get to know our prospective campers and find out why they're excited to come to camp. Paper pieces should be no more than 8.5"x11" and mailed to us at PO Box 72213, Oakland, CA 94612; digital pieces can be emailed to Express Yourself statements can also be written directly into the Camper Application.

3. Once your application is processed, you will recieve instructions on how to submit your tuition payment via check, money order or Paypal.

Application Notes:

  • We use a rolling application process, enrollment is first-come, first-served. Once we process your application, a spot is reserved for your camper. However, an instrument is not assigned until we receive both the Express Yourself piece and a tuition payment.
  • We do not assign bands before the camp session begins. On the first day of camp, we have Band Formation activities that help inform the band assignments, and we take many different factors into account when forming the bands. If your camper has a friend at camp that she would like to be in a band with, she can indicate that on her Band Formation activity sheet on the first day.