The Master of Music in Contemporary Performance with a concentration in production is designed to give advanced instrumentalists and vocalists of any style the confidence and skills in performance and production technology to take their careers to the next level.
It is distinctly contemporary in its content and approach, and embraces the principal musical movements of our time, allowing students to master their own style while discovering others. Students develop a strong artistic identity through frequent performance opportunities, private instruction, ensembles, and studio recordings. Throughout the program, students become adept at pre-production, recording, and mixing processes through ample firsthand experience in state-of-the-art studios—ready to meet the unique demands facing the artist of tomorrow.
100+ original songs recorded
45+ clinics and workshops
30+ live concert opportunities
100+ gigs outside of school
Students work with master musicians in a variety of genres such as flamenco, salsa, rock, Afro-Cuban, jazz, electronic music, and more. Through applied lessons, ensembles, master classes, and course work, students deepen their understanding of the harmonic and stylistic practices associated with their chosen area of performance.
Students also learn to master the technological and entrepreneurial skills that are essential for the contemporary performer. Through the study of music business and recorded production, students develop strategies for producing and marketing their performance projects. Students’ projects may take a variety of forms: a recording project, a concert, a lecture/demonstration, a grant proposal, a website marketing plan, or another option of students’ devising. This program is distinctly contemporary in its content and approach, and embraces the principal musical movements of our time.
The program is style-independent and is open to advanced performers from a wide variety of genres and styles, such as jazz, Latin, world music, pop, rock, classical, electronic and fusion, among others. Through hands-on playing and recording experience, you'll expand your musical horizons and learn to work with diverse and dynamic musicians.
Students spend ample time on pre-production, recording and mixing processes in our state-of-the-art recording studios and scoring stage designed by the Walters-Storyk Design Group. By the end of the program, you'll feel confident in any studio setting.
Live and Recorded Performance
Through private instruction, ensembles, the performance forum, and frequent performance opportunities, students work with faculty and visiting artists to develop their artistic identity to shine on stage or in the studio.
Who We Are Looking For
We are looking for highly skilled and creative instrumentalists and vocalists from all styles of contemporary music who wish to develop their performance career further while also immersing themselves in the recorded production process and experience.
Ideal candidates will:
- Enter the program with a very advanced level of instrumental or vocal technique and musical skill;
- Desire to expand their experience through further exploration of familiar and new styles including fusions of genres;
- Be deeply motivated to learn and apply strategies for recorded music production (including the preproduction, recording, and mixing processes) to their craft, with a focus on artistic identity and intent; and
- Demonstrate a strong interest in learning and applying new performance technology, electroacoustic instruments, and video into their live and recorded performances.
What Will I Learn?
When students complete the Master of Music in Contemporary Performance (Production Concentration), they'll have the ability to:
- synthesize the harmonic and stylistic practices associated with their chosen area of performance;
- synthesize the skills required of performers in a variety of contemporary music settings;
- perform music in contemporary musical styles;
- create and improvise music;
- develop strategies for producing and marketing their performance projects;
- synthesize their artistic identity, vision, and intent in performance work; and
- apply technology to recording and distributing music.
The culminating experience is the final project that students present at the end of the program and is related to their career direction. Through the culminating experience, students make a creative contribution to and/or define and solve a problem that exists in the profession. Working in close consultation with their advisor, the performer’s culminating experience will fall into one of three categories—a creative work, a practical project, or a research project—and may take a variety of forms such as a recording project, a concert, a lecture/demonstration, a grant proposal, a website marketing plan, a video lesson series, or another option of students’ devising. All projects include supporting materials that may take a variety of forms: a student might build a website to promote a recording, for example, or draft a grant proposal for a public performance of their music, using a recording project to supplement the grant proposal application. Students are required to meet with their advisors on a regular basis to assess their progress. The final project must be defended before a faculty committee chaired by the student's advisor.