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About the Music Program

The Music Program provides performance opportunities in 17 instrumental ensembles, 6 vocal ensembles, and student solo and studio recital series.

More than 200 concerts are presented annually, featuring UMass faculty and guest artists from around the world and advanced student ensembles. Events are free to UMass Amherst students.

Fast Facts:

  • We are an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music. UMass Amherst is accredited by the New England Association of Universities and Colleges.
  • Our program includes: 275 undergraduate and 70 graduate students; 52 faculty members
  • We offer the following degrees: Bachelor of Arts in Music (BA) or Bachelor of Music (BMus) in Jazz & African-American Music Studies, Music Education, History, Performance, or Theory/Composition; Master of Music (MM) in Jazz Composition/Arranging, Music Education, Theory, History, Performance, Composition, Conducting, or Collaborative Piano; and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Music Education.
  • Our performances take place in the 2,000-seat Fine Arts Center Concert Hall, 200-seat Bezanson Recital Hall, 700-seat Bowker Auditorium, and selected sites in the Five College area.
  • We participate in the Five College Consortium; courses can be taken, at no extra cost, at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith Colleges, all linked by a free bus system. Music students may participate in special performances such as the Five College Choral and Jazz Festivals. See the Five College Music website.
  • Our program utilizes UMass Amherst's library system, which includes music and dance-related books (20,000), scores (18,000), periodical subscriptions (100), recordings (21,000), and a variety of electronic resources; located in the W.E.B. Du Bois Library and a smaller Music Reserve Lab in the Music Department.
  • We host free workshops & masterclasses by nationally- and internationally-renowned solo performers, ensembles, and teachers in all disciplines.
  • We present free lectures on academic music subjects such as music theory and history.
  • We are home to Jazz in July, a two-week Fine Arts Center summer program, which shares many of its jazz faculty with the Department of Music & Dance, and also offers public concerts.

 

Music Program: Our Mission

The UMass Amherst Music Program provides a comprehensive education for students from the Commonwealth and beyond through a combination of established and innovative pedagogical approaches. The faculty works cooperatively, focusing on students and inspiring them to realize their full artistic potential while equipping them with skills to succeed in today's world.

The Program is also committed to distinguishing itself regionally, nationally, and internationally through the creative activity and scholarship of its faculty. Presentations, publications, recordings, and performances constitute a significant presence in the field of music, enhancing the reputation of the Department, the College, and the University while contributing to dynamic collaborations both on and off campus.

Serving as a cultural ambassador for music, the Program maintains visibility through broad course offerings, public appearances, and outreach activities within the University and the community at large.