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The Wind Ensemble playing music
School of Music

Master of Music in Performance

Embracing a Love for Music

Designed for students looking to expand professional opportunities as performers and private teachers, Butler University’s Master of Music in Performance program provides students with the necessary framework to build a meaningful career in music. The degree is comprised of coursework over two or three years, and includes ample opportunities for participation in Butler University’s ensembles. All courses are taught by Butler’s leading faculty in music, many of which utilize collaborative technologies to allow for a flexible, hybrid degree plan. Students also find opportunities to teach through the Butler Community Arts School and perform frequently as solo and ensemble musicians.

Areas of study include:

  • Brass (euphonium, horn, trombone, trumpet, tuba)
  • Percussion
  • Piano
  • Strings (bass, cello, guitar, harp, viola, violin)
  • Woodwinds (bassoon, clarinet, flute/piccolo, oboe, saxophone)
  • Voice

How to Apply

Application Deadline for fall entry: January 1 (this includes the JCA Graduate Music Supplement)
Audition Deadline for fall entry: March 1

  1. Complete Application for Graduate Admission, including*:
    • ​​A Professional Statement
    • Official transcripts
    • Resume
    • Three letters of recommendation
    • *NOTE: To submit a graduate application, you need to have previously completed a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college/university and be seeking an advanced degree. 
  2. Complete the JCA Graduate Music Supplement. The supplement will appear on your application status page after submitting your Application for Graduate Admission. The supplement is required in order for your application to be considered complete.
  3. Submit pre-screening materials, if applicable (must be received before invitation to audition)
    • ​​Vocalists only-- submit pre-screening materials: Video recording of recent performance (i.e. senior recital) OR of 1-2 pieces of solo repertoire. Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Voice Perf Pre-Screen".
    • Instrumentalists-- no pre-screening required.
  4. Audition for appropriate faculty panel scheduled through the School of Music office at See Audition Requirements below. Pre-screen submission prior to the audition is required for vocalists only. Audition deadline for fall entry: March 1

**International applicants must take the TOEFL as well as submit additional financial documentation. See International Student Application process.

Audition Requirements​
  • Brass and Woodwinds: Please consult appropriate faculty in your instrument area to discuss repertoire. Etudes, scales, arpeggios, and orchestra excerpts may also be included. No accompanist provided or required.
  • Piano: Prepare selections from at least three of the following areas- J.S. Bach: Prelude and Fugue or larger work; Classical sonata by Haydn, Mozart, or Beethoven; significant work from the Romantic Period; standard 20th or 21st century work. Sight-reading is also required.
  • Percussion: Prepare one major solo in three of the following areas- snare drum, marimba, timpani, multiple-percussion or Latin percussion, drum set; as well as two contrasting orchestra excerpts for snare, xylophone, and timpani. Sight-reading may also be required.
  • Strings: Prepare 20-30 minutes of repertoire representing at least three different periods (Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Contemporary), at least one piece must be memorized. Sight-reading may also be required. No accompanist provided or required.
  • Voice: 
    • Pre-screen required before invitation to audition: Submit a video recording of recent performance (i.e. senior recital) OR of 1-2 pieces of solo repertoire. Submit video recording as a link to an online source (i.e. YouTube, DropBox, GoogleDrive, etc.) to with subject line "[FULL NAME]-Voice Perf Pre-Screen".
    • If invited to audition: Prepare at least one selection in French, Italian and German, as well as one aria from opera or oratorio. Repertoire should represent various periods and styles. Auditions will be virtual only for the foreseeable future, either via an appropriate live video chat platform or recorded audition video. Students will be contacted with specific details upon passing the pre-screening.
Degree Overview
Total Credit Hours: 30 credit hours
Anticipated Duration: 2 years
Requires a full recital and final oral comprehensive exam

Required Courses (# credits):

  • Major Instrument or Voice lessons (8 credits)
  • Ensemble (2)
  • Instrumental, Vocal, or Piano Pedagogy if not take as an undergrad -OR- Music Education elective (1-2)
  • Research in Music (3)
  • Music History Electives (6)
  • Music Theory Elective (3)
  • General Music Electives (6-7)
  • Recital
  • Final Oral Examination

Download full degree guide


See full list of applied faculty by area on our Faculty & Staff page.

Area Coordinators:

Related Graduate Assistantships/Tuition Waivers

Contact the School of Music office at or 317-940-9065.