Student orchestra performing

Performance Degrees

Bachelor of Music (BMus)Master of Music (MM)Artist’s Diploma‌

Bachelor of Music (BMus)

The Bachelor of Music degree in performance focuses on the mastery of skills in orchestral or band instruments, piano, organ, harpsichord, guitar or voice. Students are required to perform two individual recitals and participate in chamber music and ensemble concerts. Many students also participate in outside performances. The auditioning student must demonstrate outstanding ability and be highly motivated toward high standards of achievement. Faculty and staff work closely with each student musician to nurture technical and artistic growth.

Those interested in pursuing a professional performance career often continue directly into graduate study after completing the undergraduate degree. The same is true of students interested in securing a position as an applied music teacher at a college or university. Some graduates create their own teaching studios and become vital and active teachers and performers in their communities.

Our faculty are seasoned veterans of the concert stage, whose careers have included performances throughout the world. They have performed with the New York Philharmonic, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony and at Carnegie Hall, the New York Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, New York City Opera and in recitals throughout the world. Their close ties with New York and international performing and teaching organizations offer students exciting connections to the most vibrant music scenes in the United States and abroad.

Links to Undergraduate Catalog course listings:

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Master of Music (MM)

The Master of Music degree develops high-achieving performing musicians at the post-baccalaureate level. The Master of Music educates students who aspire to become opera singers, concert artists or orchestral musicians, collaborative pianists, composers or arrangers, freelance musicians, or conductors. These students may be planning to coach or teach privately, either as the sole focus of their professional lives or, more likely, as part of a more comprehensive career. The Master of Music prepares other students for advanced study of music performance and pedagogy at the doctoral level. Whatever the reason for enrolling in the John J. Cali School of Music Master of Music program, students will refine and extend their musicianship in preparation for the next steps as musical artists.

The Master of Music in performance will change students’ relationships with the work they do as musicians. This is what distinguishes study in musical performance at the graduate level from the undergraduate experience. Students begin their postgraduate studies with the core of their musical personality – the skills, understandings and attitudes that define them as musicians – already established; postgraduate studies are designed to nurture that existing artistic personality so that students can significantly impact their respective fields. Master of Music students will also be encouraged to be curious and resourceful, because however great one’s musicianship the successful musician can only sustain a satisfying career through constant artistic and professional renewal, drawing from a diverse range of professional challenges and opportunities that a musical life presents.

Link to catalog information for the area of concentration that interests you: Vocal, Keyboard, Collaborative Keyboard, Instrumental, Woodwind Doubling, Jazz Studies, Conducting.

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Artist’s Diploma‌

The two-year post-baccalaureate Artist’s Diploma degree develops the technique, artistry and professionalism of gifted young musicians. It trains students who possess both talent and the ability and determination to realize that talent in the contemporary musical world. Students may have already begun performing careers or may be on the brink of such careers.

The program focuses on the practical, performance-based aspects of music, including private instruction, solo and chamber music study and performance, and the presentation of two full recitals. Students work closely with faculty, coaches and advisors to grow as performers. In addition, the program is flexible so that students may choose such varied options as expanding studies in theory, languages or history, or making practical preparations for careers. The program is planned to support the individual needs and goals of each musician.

A student who successfully completes one year of this program and decides not to continue may be eligible to receive a Performer’s Certificate. Please contact Dr. David Witten ( to learn more.

Link to Graduate Catalog course listing.

Link to Federal Department of Education financial aid disclosure for the Artist’s Diploma.

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For more information:
Gina Balestracci, Academic Administrator