A degree in Conducting

Conducting students receive close individual mentorship and significant podium time.

The conducting program trains highly-qualified musicians to become successful conductors and scholars, emphasizing a thorough knowledge of repertory, knowledge of historical and analytical issues, an understanding of efficient, effective rehearsal technique and a clear, expressive conducting technique.

The Master of Music in performance with a concentration in conducting is designed for those wishing to further advance their craft with an eye towards advancing their professional work, admission into a doctoral conducting program, or becoming a more effective secondary school instrumental conductor. Students have a core group of courses related to their conducting area, but also have opportunities to learn about the repertory and conducting issues in other areas.

This program has three tracks:

  • Wind band: Conductors study privately with the director of bands, work closely with conducting faculty to develop their conducting and rehearsal skills and get podium time with opportunities to lead the ASU Wind Ensemble and Wind Symphony, serve as assistant conductor of the Maroon Band and co-direct the Gold Band.

  • Orchestral: This track is designed for orchestral conducting. Required courses are specific to orchestral conducting and elective courses provide additional opportunities for further orchestral study.

  • Music direction: This is an entry–level degree in conducting with an emphasis in music direction for music theatre and opera. The program is geared toward those with strong keyboard/piano skills who are eager to learn the skills necessary for a successful career as a musical director. Learn more.

  • Choral track: Conductors in the choral conducting track engage in a curriculum that explores culturally responsive applications, decolonial pedagogies, global score study and interdisciplinary framing of gesture. All students receive substantial podium time and work closely with conducting faculty.

The Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting is designed with the belief that regardless of specialty area, one is first and foremost a conductor. Areas of specialty include choral, orchestra/opera, or wind band music. Students have a core group of common courses, regardless of emphasis area. Students also have opportunities to learn about the repertory and conducting issues in other areas, including the option of acquiring a cognate in a second conducting area.

The ASU School of Music, Dance and Theatre announces one teaching assistantship in Orchestral/Opera Conducting open in the fall of 2022. 

The Doctor of Musical Arts in Music (emphasis in orchestra and opera conducting) programs. Graduate conductors work closely with the director of orchestras, as well as the artistic director of Music Theatre and Opera, and gain a breadth of experience in both orchestral and opera conducting. Learn more about the assistantship. 

The Master of Music in Conducting with an emphasis in Music Direction for Theatre announces a limited assistantship for fall 2022 and is geared toward aspiring conductors with strong keyboard or piano skills who are eager to learn the wide range of skills necessary for a successful career as a professional music director, particularly in the realm of professional musical theatre. Learn more

Conducting graduate degrees

conductor conducting

Conducting, DMA

conductor and orchestra

Performance (Conducting), MM

Music minor

students playing trombone

Music Performance, Minor

students dancing on stage

Music Theatre, Minor

students playing instruments

Music, Minor

Explore all areas of study

View all Music, Dance and Theatre areas of studies for other undergraduate, graduate and minors options.

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Meet our Conducting faculty