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McNally Smith College of Music to Add Master of Music in Performance Degree for Fall 2011

Program’s Emphasis on Globalization, Music Business Training Will “Prepare the Whole Musician”

After McNally Smith College of Music received numerous requests from current and prospective students, the influential music college is going the extra mile to provide its student body with even greater opportunities. A new Master of Music (M.M.) degree designed for performance majors in a variety of disciplines will begin in the Fall 2011 semester.

The ground-breaking contemporary music college will offer its new M.M. in Performance degree for voice, strings, woodwinds, brass, piano, guitar, bass, keyboard, and percussion. The program will emphasize advanced music performance study through applied music lessons, ensembles, recitals, and studio performance. McNally Smith recently received approval for the program from the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) and expects the first group of students to enroll for the Fall 2011 semester.

The four-semester, 38-credit program will also include intensive performance technique and stylistic studies, as well as music technology and business education. The program is designed to equip students with a contemporary understanding of American and global music, music education and the fluid dynamics of the music industry. With courses in everything from Global Improvisation to New Media Promotion and Digital Audio Production, the McNally Smith M.M. graduate will have the skills and experience needed to interact the music industry in whatever career they choose.

The innovative program will be taught by senior faculty members of the College from a variety of interdisciplinary areas.

Download the informational brochure here.

Preparing Students for Today’s Global, Musical and Economic Environment

“Students who complete the program will be better musicians and more prepared as they go on to their professional lives,” notes Terry Burns, Graduate Studies Coordinator and Bass Department Head. “The McNally Smith Master of Music degree is designed for the graduate student who is looking for a program that is more contemporary, global in scope and relevant in today’s musical and economic environment.”

“Most graduate degrees in music performance are based in specific styles of music such as jazz performance or classical performance,” Burns adds. “This program offers an enhanced education in contemporary music, which contains elements of jazz and classical music, as well as rock, various Latin, reggae, funk and R&B, and other styles of contemporary music performance. We see our program as an important part of preparing the whole musician.”

Program To Impact How Music Is Taught

“With the new Master of Music program, McNally Smith College of Music again demonstrates its commitment to being a premier institution of higher learning for the musical arts — and internationally recognized as such by students, educators, and music professionals,” says Cliff Wittstruck, Dean of Academic Affairs and member of McNally Smith’s Guitar Faculty.

Wittstruck added that the administration also recognized the need for developing quality instructors with M.M. degrees in the areas of study that McNally Smith currently offers. “The program is a unique development in graduate music education. Its broad and practical focus on performance will enable students of the program to excel in their chosen music professions and allow others to go on for doctoral degrees. Given the program’s scope and utility, the college believes it can have a major impact over the next decade in how music is taught.”

For further information, contact Director of Admission Kathy Hawks at