Bard College Conservatory of Music

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The Bard College Conservatory of Music is part of Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York. Founded in 2005, the program is unique among music conservatories in the United States in that all undergraduate students are required to participate in a five-year dual-degree program, in which both a B.M. in music and a B.A. in a subject other than music are obtained.[1] Many of the Conservatory's faculty also teach at other conservatories such as the Juilliard School and the Curtis Institute.

Undergraduate faculty teach the standard orchestral/chamber music instruments and composition. The Conservatory also offers two graduate programs: the Graduate Vocal Arts Program and the Graduate Conducting Program, and a Post-graduate Collaborative Piano Fellowship in addition to a Preparatory Division and The Conductor's Institute.


The László Z. Bitó Conservatory Building

The construction of the László Z. Bitó Conservatory Building began in October 2011 and is scheduled for completion in January 2012. Made possible by a $9.2 million gift from Bard alumnus László Z. Bitó, class of 1960, this teaching and performance facility addresses the growing needs of the Conservatory, brought on by its fivefold growth since its founding in 2005. The building is designed by Deborah Berke & Partners Architects.[2]

Conservatory Programs[edit]

The Bard College Conservatory of Music offers a five-year undergraduate program in which each student pursues two degrees concurrently: a Bachelor of Music degree and a Bachelor of Arts degree in a field other than music. At the graduate level, the Conservatory offers two two-year programs in conducting and voice leading to a Master of Music.

The Undergraduate Double Degree Program[edit]

All Conservatory undergraduates pursue a five-year program leading to two degrees: the bachelor of music and the bachelor of arts in a field other than music. The pursuit of these two degrees at Bard is thoroughly integrated. Conservatory students live, eat, and attend most classes with non-Conservatory students, and are fully part of the academic and social life of the College. Each Conservatory student has two academic advisers, one from the Conservatory and one from a field that the student is considering as a major for the B.A. degree. The bachelor of music program contains many innovative components: all performance majors study composition, and the Conservatory Seminar integrates music theory and music history with special emphasis on their relation to performance.

The Graduate Vocal Arts Program[edit]

The vocal arts curriculum is divided into three main components: Core Seminars, private instruction, and workshops.

The program’s innovative curriculum centers on the Core Seminar, which meets once a week for three hours. Each semester the seminar focuses on a topic that addresses different aspects of the singing life: poetry and text, international musical influences, building and sustaining a musical career, and opera.

  • Core Seminar I: Dickinson, Goethe, and Verlaine
  • Core Seminar II: Singing and Song in the Global Era
  • Core Seminar III: Expanding the Workshop
  • Core Seminar IV: The Singer and the Stage

Course work also includes concentrated study in vocal instruction, including a weekly private voice lesson as well as private vocal coaching, diction and phonetics, chamber music, and movement and acting. The Alexander Technique workshop offers instruction in both a class setting and in individual tutorials, with a special focus on the breath.

The Graduate Conducting Program[edit]

The Orchestral and Choral Conducting Program of The Bard College Conservatory of Music is a two-year graduate curriculum that culminates in the Master of Music (M.M.) degree.

The Post-Graduate Collaborative Piano Fellowship[edit]

The Postgraduate Collaborative Piano Fellowship is a two-year fellowship designed to give professional experience to pianists who have a strong interest in becoming collaborative artists, with the ultimate aim of easing the transition between school and the working world of a collaborative pianist. The fellowship is open to both students who have already completed a degree in collaborative piano and those students who have completed a bachelor's degree in piano performance and have a strong interest in further study in collaborative piano.





  • So Percussion
  • Tzong-Ching Ju, adviser
  • Daniel Druckman, adviser
  • Jonathan Haas, adviser
  • Garry Kvistad, adviser
  • Jan Williams, adviser
  • Greg Zuber, adviser



Double Bass

  • Marji Danilow
  • Leigh Mesh


  • Nadine Asin (master classes only)
  • Tara Helen O'Connor






  • Carl Albach


  • Demian Austin
  • Weston Sprott
  • Denson Paul Pollard



  • Sara Cutler
  • Bridget Kibbey


Chamber Music

  • Marka Gustavsson, coordinator
  • Robert Martin
  • Blair McMillen
  • Raman Ramakrishnan

Note that performance faculty also coach chamber music.

Orchestral Studies

  • Leon Botstein
  • Erica Kiesewetter

Music Theory and History

  • Leon Botstein
  • Christopher H. Gibbs
  • John Halle
  • Peter Laki

Performance Studies

Performance Practice

  • Raymond Erickson
  • Stephen Hammer

MM in Vocal Arts

MM in Conducting

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 42°1′10″N 73°54′27.5″W / 42.01944°N 73.907639°W / 42.01944; -73.907639