Performance Opportunities for Students

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The exceptional training for student musicians at BW's Conservatory begins with a personal relationship with your faculty mentor, fostered one-to-one in the studio. As a result of your private study, you will be provided with numerous solo and departmental opportunities to perform. To augment your performance opportunities as a soloist and studio musician, you also choose from a variety of regular small ensembles such as the Percussion Ensemble, Brass Choir, Flute Ensemble and Jazz Band, just to name a few.

On a larger scale, competitive auditions are held for positions in our Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Motet Choir and University Choir. Other large ensembles, including Symphonic Band, BW Singers and Women's Choir, provide a wide variety of styles and performance opportunities.

Outstanding performance traditions include our world-renowned Bach Festival, the biennial FOCUS Festival of Contemporary Music, and the annual concerto competition where two students are recognized for outstanding musicianship and performance ability.


  • Brass Choir
  • BW Singers
  • Chamber Ensembles
  • Collegium Musicum
  • Symphonic Band
  • Jazz Ensemble
  • Motet Choir
  • Percussion Ensemble
  • Symphonic Wind Ensemble
  • Symphony Orchestra
  • University Choir
  • Women's Choir


Two chamber groups maintain residence at Baldwin Wallace and receive support from the University. While both include Conservatory faculty members, neither is an entirely faculty ensemble.

The Africa -> West Percussion Trio is an ensemble-in-residence at Baldwin Wallace University. It is dedicated to the performance of both Western and non-Western styles of percussion music. CD recordings are available on Stellar Records. Members include:

  • Josh Ryan
  • Ryan Korb
  • Jamie Ryan

The Elysian Trio began its performance tradition as the Baldwin Wallace Faculty Trio in 1948, with the world premiere of Charles Ives' piano trio. The group performs an annual series of concerts on and off the Baldwin Wallace campus. Each of the trio's members is a distinguished teacher and solo performer. Members include:

  • Julian Ross, violin
  • Merry Peckham, cello
  • Robert Mayerovitch, piano


In the Baldwin Wallace Bach Festival, BW performing groups are joined by faculty members and local professional musicians in the three-day, multi-event program. Soloists are internationally known artists; the lecturers, distinguished Bach and Baroque scholars. Students consider the unusual opportunity to participate, as colleagues, with world-class professionals a high point in their performing experience.


The biennial FOCUS Festival features the music of a contemporary composer who visits Baldwin Wallace for a week-long residency. At the conclusion of the week's rehearsals and symposia, the composer's music is performed in a series of concerts, including large ensembles and chamber groups. Featured composers have included Chen Yi, William Bolcom, Loris Chobanian, John Corigliano, Lukas Foss, Karel Husa, Witold Lutoslawski, Krzysztof Penderecki, Gunther Schuller and Joseph Schwantner.


Concerto Competition
An annual concerto competition occurs each fall and is judged by three professional musicians from outside Baldwin Wallace University. Typically, the competition results in one student being selected to perform publicly with a major ensemble.

Hakola Competition
Mel Hakola was a distinguished voice teacher at Baldwin Wallace for 38 years prior to his retirement. The Mel Hakola Prize for Academic and Vocal Excellence was created to encourage and reward voice students who demonstrate exceptional vocal, musical, intellectual and creative talents and abilities and who have the potential to make a significant contribution to music performance. The purpose of this prize is to promote and recognize a high standard of academic and musical excellence among voice students at Baldwin Wallace. The competition occurs during the fall semester, with prize money credited during the spring semester of the junior year and the fall semester of the senior year.