P.O. Box 70661
Phone (423) 439-4270
Web Address: www.etsu.edu/cas/music
The Department of Music at East Tennessee State University was established in 1946 and is a fully accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Music.
The Department of Music provides specialized training in music to prepare students for professional work or advanced study, for teaching music in the elementary and secondary schools, and for general cultural attainment.
The curriculum of the Department of Music is designed to present the learning of music as an integrated whole. Solo and ensemble performance, theoretical and historical studies, concert attendance, and electives both within and outside the department are intended to provide a balanced education.
In addition to training in the various professions of music, the department provides general music studies and activities for the non-music major, the university, and the community.
Major Fields of Study and Degrees
Undergraduate instruction in the department leads to the Bachelor of Music (BM) or to the Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree. The Bachelor of Music concentrations (Music Education or Performance) prepare students for professional work or advanced study or for teaching music in the elementary and secondary schools. The concentrations in the Bachelor of Arts (Composition, Contemporary Music Performance, Music History, or Performance) focus on those who want to major in music but want neither to be a performer nor an educator. Some may want to choose other paths in music or simply want to get a music degree but work in areas outside of music that require a college education. The BA degree provides the opportunity to study music from a liberal arts perspective.
The Department of Music offers a wide variety of recitals, concerts, lectures, and other programs by students, faculty, and distinguished guest artists. Most of the programs are free and open to the public. The events schedule can be found at http://www.etsu.edu/cas/music/.
The Department of Music encourages participation in music-related student organizations. Active chapters of Percussive Arts Society, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Kappa Kappa Psi, and Sigma Alpha Iota provide social, service, and professional opportunities for both music and non-music majors.
Scholarships and Awards
Upon recommendation of the faculty, students may be awarded scholarships for talent in music. Scholarship auditions are held in February and March of each year. Details are available on the department’s web page. Awards vary in size and include the following:
The Lamar Alexander Scholarship
The Elsie Artz Memorial Scholarship
The Teresa Bowers Scholarship
The Floyd Cramer Scholarship
Chih-Long Hu Piano Scholarship
Ella V. Ross Scholarship
The Mary Florence and Virgil C. Self Scholarship
Band and Choral Performance Scholarships
The Powell Choral Scholarship
Richard Compton Memorial Scholarship
W.G. Patton Scholarship
Robert LaPella Vocal Scholarship
Marie Hutchinson Hunter Piano Scholarship
Marilyn Davis Piano Scholarship
Walter Marshall Scholarships
Topalian Jazz Scholarship
Nicholas L. Tate Scholarship
Kenton Coe Composition Award
Thomas Jenrette Vocal Scholarship
Academic Performance Scholarships
Public Performance Scholarships
ETSU Strings Scholarship
Other awards based upon academic excellence and performance ability are also available from the Department of Music.
Admission and Enrollment Policies
Any student seeking a major or minor in music at ETSU must first meet the general university admission requirements. Once that admission is granted, the student must audition for admission to the music degree program. Auditions are held on selected dates during the spring (see the department web page, www.etsu.edu/cas/music, for dates, and by appointment.
The audition may be performed live or via videotape (if the student lives more than 250 miles from campus.) The audition, which is judged by faculty in the Department of Music, should demonstrate the student’s technique and musicianship.
If a student meets the audition requirements and is admitted to the program, an academic advisor will assist the student in determining courses to be taken. Students who do not meet the audition requirements may register for applied music and for ensembles and may audition again at a later date. It should be noted that the student’s academic progress will be seriously delayed if the music major is not declared by the sophomore year. Students electing the music minor must declare that minor prior to reaching 60 credits of coursework to ensure that the program can be completed in a timely manner.
It is recommended that students not successfully completing the theory entrance exam take music fundamentals prior to starting theory courses
Music majors must register for a minimum of eight credits of applied music (private instruction) in their major area of performance. Lessons must be taken with a member of the department faculty. Students may register for either one or two credits per semester. Each credit represents a minimum of one half-hour lesson and six hours of practice per week. A fee of $150 per credit is assessed.
Admission to applied music is by audition only. Non-music majors may register for applied music when faculty loads permit. All students must have permission from the department to register for lessons.
Applied music classes are structured so students take MUSC 18xx their freshman year and MUSC 29xx their sophomore year. At the end of the freshman and sophomore years all students must pass a barrier examination in order to advance to either MUSC 29xx or upper-division MUSC 39xx status. Students failing these juries will be placed on probationary status and given one semester to raise their performance ability to achieve the next level status. Students failing their second barrier examination will be dismissed from the music program.
Jury examinations are held at the end of each semester of applied study for music majors and minors. The purpose of the jury is to determine student progress in the performance area, serve as a final exam, and be a benchmark performance showing the student’s ability to advance to the next level of applied study. Applied study for music majors and minors is offered at three levels. Level I (freshman year - two semesters), Level II (sophomore year - two semesters), and Level III (upper division - junior and senior years.) Students who remain at Level I or Level II after three semesters of study will be dismissed from the music program. Students who are retained in the music program are expected to achieve Level III (upper-division standing) during their third year of study and a minimum of two semesters of study at Level III must be completed prior to graduation.
All music majors must perform a solo work in public each semester. Freshman music majors are expected to perform once during the year. “In public” includes studio class or recital, department recital, half or full recital, and other public events as approved by the applied instructor.
All music majors, regardless of concentration, must perform a 30-minute half recital. Music performance majors must also perform an hour-long full recital. A student must be admitted to Level III prior to presenting a half or full recital.
Piano Proficiency: B.M. Performance
Students in the B.M. performance concentrations are required to meet a standard proficiency level on piano. This is assessed through a piano proficiency examination given at the end of the first year of classes (typically after the completion of MUSC 1010 - Class Piano I and MUSC 1020 - Class Piano II ). To prepare students for the proficiency examination, students must enroll for a piano course beginning their first semester of study, either in class piano or applied piano lessons. Students must remain in a piano course until the piano proficiency examination is passed. Students with prior piano training may request to take the piano proficiency examination when they matriculate.
Students in the B.A. music concentrations must successfully pass a sight reading proficiency examination. The examination will be administered by the applied faculty as a part of the requirements for applied level advancement from applied level I to II. The examination may be administered at the time of the level advancement performance jury or scheduled separately.
Students in the B.M. concentrations must successfully pass two sight reading proficiency examinations. The examinations will be administered by the applied faculty and are part of the requirements for applied level advancement. The first from applied level I to II and the second from applied level II to III. The examination may be administered at the time of the level advancement performance jury or scheduled separately.
Students in the B.M. performance concentrations must demonstrate the ability to prepare a new piece of music for performance without the assistance of a faculty member. This skill must be demonstrated at a jury after the student has advanced to applied level III. Selection of the piece should be made in consultation with applied faculty.
Performing experience in ensembles is a vital part of the training of all musicians. Thus, all music majors are required to participate in a major ensemble every semester of full-time enrollment. Wind and percussion majors in the music education concentration must be in band (wind ensemble or concert band) each semester. Performance majors may substitute orchestra if they hold a regular, permanent position in the Johnson City Symphony Orchestra. Those students must enroll in MUSC 1204 /MUSC 3204 Orchestra. String majors might also enroll for orchestra at Milligan College. Voice majors must participate in choir. Keyboard majors must enroll in MUSC 1272 /MUSC 3272 Accompanying.
Students are not limited to a specific number of ensembles, but music majors must enroll for a minimum of ten (10) non-ensemble credits each semester of full-time attendance.
Students in the B.M. Performance concentrations must perform a solo work in public each semester. “In public” includes studio recitals, department recital hour, half-hour or full-hour recitals, or other public events as approved by the applied instructor.
To complete the degree, students must perform and pass both of the following:
- A half-hour recital (typically given during the junior year)
- An full-hour recital (typically given during the senior year)
Half-hour and full-hour recitals may only be presented after a student has been admitted to Level III applied lessons. Repertoire requirements and assessment procedures for these recitals will be provided by applied faculty.
Students in the B.A. Performance concentration must perform a solo work in public each semester. “In public” includes studio recitals, department recital hour, half-hour or full-hour recitals, or other public events as approved by the applied instructor.
To complete the degree, students must perform and pass a full-hour recital (typically given during the senior year). The recital may only be presented after a student has been admitted to Level III applied lessons. Repertoire requirements and assessment procedures for the recital will be provided by applied faculty.
Students giving their half recital must write and submit program notes to the Department of Music faculty program committee. These notes must meet the requirements for program notes (provided by the applied faculty). If the submitted program notes are not of the quality necessary for publication, students are required to revise the program notes as requested by the faculty program committee until the program notes meet the required standard.
As a music major it is important to experience a variety of musical performances in different genres, styles, and forces. In order to ensure this occurs during the student’s program of study, the ETSU Department of Music requires all music majors to attend the following music recitals (concerts/performances). This is a standard requirement for all universities accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. To track attendance at these events, all music majors are required to enroll in MUSC 1111 - Recital Attendance each semester. This is a 0 credit course and is graded as Pass or Fail. All music majors are required to pass a minimum of 8 semesters of MUSC 1111 Recital Attendance in order to graduate.
All music majors will be assigned an academic advisor upon entrance to the degree program. Students should consult DegreeWorks for specific course requirements in the Bachelor of Music degree. All majors must be advised prior to registration each semester.
Music education majors should consult an academic advisor in the College of Education for the Secondary Education minor.