Understanding the diverse traditions, styles, historic and cultural contexts through which music has and continues to define itself is at the core of Baldwin Wallace's music history and literature major.
The comprehensive program explores the evolution of musical styles through rigorous studies of masterworks, major composers, historic developments and societal influences.
You'll learn how music can powerfully connect with a listener. You'll build competencies in reading, hearing, understanding and appreciating music.
In your senior year, you'll complete in-depth scholarly research and accompanying work reflective of graduate-level studies. You'll also participate in a practicum offering professional leadership opportunities. These impressive experiences have helped BW students gain admittance to top graduate programs.
At Baldwin Wallace, you'll gain technical, professional and artistic skills. You'll receive individual attention and faculty mentoring. The faculty-student ratio is 7:1.
BW Conservatory faculty are established professionals with real-world experience, impressive credentials and networking connections.
They're published authors, musicians, composers and researchers. Their interests include Renaissance music, world music, film music, post-tonal theory, pedagogy of music theory and harmonic function, to name a few.
You'll also benefit from BW's proximity to Cleveland – home of the world-renowned Cleveland Orchestra, Great Lakes Theater Festival, Playhouse Square and more.
Most students who major in music history and literature pursue graduate degrees. You'll receive excellent preparation through BW's liberal arts-focused curriculum and Conservatory of Music coursework and practical experiences. Career possibilities include but are not limited to:
- Music librarian
- Music critic
Baldwin Wallace has achieved the elite All-Steinway School designation for its Conservatory of Music. In 2015, BW joined a prestigious list of just 14 conservatories worldwide that boast this renowned classification. The addition of 88 Steinway pianos will further elevate your learning experience by having lessons and performance opportunities on the same quality instruments that are the standard in concert halls worldwide.
VIBRANT FACILITY ENGAGES STUDENTS
Striking Boesel Musical Arts Center is a picturesque four-building complex that houses BW's Conservatory of Music. It's a seamless blend of historic architecture and modern design. The facility houses 50 soundproofed practice rooms, instructional space, practice studios and impressive rehearsal halls that can accommodate the latest technologies for teaching and performance.
EXCEPTIONAL LEARNING EXPERIENCES
Innovation, excellence and outstanding hands-on learning and performance opportunities make Baldwin Wallace's Conservatory of Music a proven choice for students nationwide. The undergraduate-only Conservatory provides an exceptional learning environment for students to take lead roles in performing, conducting, managing and teaching. Alumni can be found at top graduate schools and working with the best orchestras, operas and theatres. Other alumni are employed in rewarding positions in teaching, arts management and music therapy.
CONSERVATORY STUDENTS ARE TALENTED, INTELLIGENT
BW Conservatory of Music students are achievers. Over the past three years, the average ACT score for incoming students was 26. The average SAT score was 590 for verbal and 570 for mathematics.
Rigorous coursework coupled with intensive and extensive practical experiences provide comprehensive learning.
You'll learn about non-Western and Western traditions, including Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and 20th and 21st century eras.
Through your studies, you'll learn to employ analytical methods and modes of inquiry similar to those used in other disciplines – language, literary criticism, mathematics and psychology.
Music history and literature offers an outstanding foundation for graduate school. It can be studied as a single major or companion field of study for a double major. It also can be added as a music emphasis to any Conservatory major.
Student success is a top priority. Small class sizes, individual attention and faculty mentoring are at the core of BW's Conservatory of Music programs.
Experiential learning bridges classroom study with real-world opportunities. Numerous solo and departmental opportunities to perform put you at the forefront of career preparation. With more than 325 events a year, Baldwin Wallace's Conservatory of Music offers an impressive array of performance opportunities.
Among small ensembles, BW has a Brass Choir, Percussion Ensemble, Jazz Band, Flute Ensemble, to name just a few.
On a larger scale, competitive auditions are held for positions in BW's Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Wind Ensemble, Motet Choir and University Choir. Other impressive large ensembles include the Symphonic Band, BW Singers and Women's Choir.
Baldwin Wallace Conservatory of Music has outstanding campus performance traditions and collaborations with regional and national organizations. A few examples include:
- Baldwin Wallace Bach Festival
The three-day campus event is the oldest collegiate Bach Festival in the country. It features lectures, BW performance groups, faculty members and renowned professional soloists and musicians. Baldwin Wallace students consider the unusual opportunity of participating, as colleagues, with world-class professionals a high point in their performing experience. The festival is evolving to include year-round events, such as Bach Haus, that explore Bach's influence on a broad spectrum of music.
- FOCUS Festival of Contemporary Music
The biennial 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.
- Art Song Festival
BW Conservatory of Music is home to this week-long biennial event that brings international concert artists, singers and pianists to campus. The festival focuses on the unique relationship between singer and pianist in the performance of art song repertoire. It provides an opportunity to hear renowned artists in both recital and master classes.
At Baldwin Wallace, student learning experiences are enhanced by exceptional resources that include:
- Riemenschneider Bach Institute
The institute houses rare items related to J.S. Bach and his circle, as well as historical reference materials, scores and a collection of classic recordings. It has one of the nation's most impressive holdings of Baroque manuscripts and first editions. It attracts scholars from around the world.
- Ferne Patterson Jones Memorial Music Library
A valuable campus resource, the library offers 18,000 scores, 7,000 books, and more than 10,000 sound and video recordings. Online resources to which the library subscribes include over one million tracks of streaming audio and video. Help with research is available by appointment, on a walk-in basis or through email.
At Baldwin Wallace, you'll experience personal and professional growth in a supportive community that challenges and inspires you to succeed.
Conservatory students who have pursued master's and doctoral degrees have been accepted to some of the best schools, including Eastman School of Music, The University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, Yale University School of Music, Brandeis University, The University of Michigan School of Music, Westminster Choir College and The University of Colorado at Boulder College of Music.
Kira Thurman '06 is assistant professor of Germanic languages and literatures and history at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Her Ph.D. in history is from University of Rochester. BW allowed the Vienna, Austria, native to tailor her studies to include classes and research in German literature, history and music.
Scott Burnham '79 is currently the Scheide professor of music history at Princeton University. He received a Master of Music in composition from Yale University and a doctorate in music theory from Brandeis University. He is a published author of numerous books and articles for music journals.
Chair, Academic Studies Department
Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin
Ph.D., University of Cincinnati–College-Conservatory of Music
M.M., Ithaca College
Visiting Assistant Professor
Ph.D., University of Minnesota
Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin
D.M.A., Cleveland Institute of Music
Ph.D., The University of Kentucky
D.M.A., University of Cincinnati–College-Conservatory of Music
M.M., Ithaca College
M.M., University of Cincinnati–College-Conservatory of Music