Master of Music in Conducting

Department

Program Overview

Boston Conservatory at Berklee's conducting program is rooted in the belief that today's conductor must be well versed in a vast range of instrumental repertoire for any type of ensemble. Under the guidance of esteemed faculty, students have the opportunity to observe and participate in the many ensemble experiences at the Conservatory, collaborating with talented musicians who are passionate about creating top-quality performances for Boston audiences.

The Conservatory's location in the heart of Boston is an ideal setting for aspiring conductors in any musical genre. Not only is the Conservatory within walking distance of world-renowned organizations, such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Handel and Haydn Society, and Boston Lyric Opera, but the school boasts an ever-growing network of community and professional ensembles that have a history of hiring Boston Conservatory-trained conductors and directors.

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Our Students

Students in the conducting program are drawn to a career steadfast in leadership and collaboration. They are creative thinkers, inspired by the score and determined to explore its many possibilities for artistic expression. Those who are most successful in the program are proficient instrumentalists or vocalists who understand the value of every musician, and prioritize continued studies as a performer in support of their development as a conductor. Perhaps most importantly, conductors are thought leaders, so students in the program must dedicate themselves to a holistic program of intellectual and artistic growth.

Core Curriculum

The Conservatory’s program balances significant podium time with a program of study designed to grow an artist well-positioned for a career in arts leadership today. Students work with a dedicated conductor’s ensemble in weekly rehearsals throughout their program. Second-year conducting students serve as assistant conductors to their associated conducting faculty, becoming more active in the rehearsal process, and earn the opportunity to lead a performance of a Conservatory ensemble. 

In the first year of the program, students focus on the fundamentals of conducting technique, score and artistic preparation, and career development. In the second year, students will be offered a choice to specialize their studies in one of four tracks: 

  1. Orchestral Conducting 
  2. Contemporary Music Conducting 
  3. Wind Band Conducting 
  4. Opera and Theater Conducting 

During this second year, students will transfer their applied lessons to the instructor whose work is most closely associated with their desired area of study, along with their observation and apprenticeship experiences, repertoire studies, electives, and practical experiences. 

As part of the program, conducting students receive private lessons on their primary instrument and take courses in advanced music theory and analysis and music history and literature, and choose from a wide range of elective offerings.

Your Future

Alumni of Boston Conservatory's conducting program have earned positions with esteemed ensembles, choruses, and schools nationally and internationally, including:

Ensembles

  • Arizona Pro Arte
  • Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Berklee College of Music Video Game Orchestra
  • Boston Chamber Orchestra
  • Bozeman Symphony
  • Chattanooga Symphony Orchestra
  • Costa Rica Youth Symphony
  • Costa Rican National Symphony
  • Des Moines Metro Opera
  • Georgia Symphony Orchestra
  • Itzhak Perlman Klezmer Tour
  • Los Angeles Philharmonic
  • Newburgh Symphony Orchestra
  • Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie
  • Orchestra 914
  • Park East Synagogue
  • Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra
  • Santa Fe Opera
  • Sun Symphony orchestra
  • Orlando Opera
  • Utah Symphony Orchestra
  • Washington National Opera

Faculty Appointments

  • Dartmouth College
  • Idyllwild Arts Academy
  • Lake Forest Symphony
  • Williams College

How to apply