The Division of Ensembles and Conducting is dedicated to providing the opportunity for both music majors and non-music majors to experience an ensemble curriculum that creates a point of synthesis with respect to technique, expression and musical understanding. A wide array of ensemble performance opportunities include the University Bands, Choirs, Early Music Ensemble, New Music Ensemble, Opera Theatre, Symphony Orchestra and numerous specialized ensembles.

The School of Music offers a Master of Music degree with an Emphasis in Conducting (choral, orchestral or wind). In this program students work closely with their primary mentor teacher, gaining practical musical experience in a variety of rehearsal and performance venues.

With 45 major, minor, faculty, and non-credit ensembles, there is an ensemble for every interest and major. While music ensembles are comprised primarily of music majors, membership is open to all students of the University through a performance audition. For more information about each individual ensemble, click the links to the left.

Major Ensembles

Major ensembles provide eligible students with for one (1) hour of credit for participation. They are open to all qualified students of the University after consultation with the director.

Minor Ensembles

Minor ensembles provide eligible students with one-half (0.5) hour of credit for participation. These are open to all qualified students of the University after consultation with the director. Students registering for Chamber Ensembles must register under the section number assigned to the faculty member coaching the group. Please note that the Cardinal Singers is an ensemble open to all qualified students of the University after consultation with the director and yields no (0) hours of credit.

Ensemble Participation

The following are the guidelines by which undergraduate music students participate in ensembles:

  • The committee will consider the following criteria, among others:

a. Student's degree program
b. Needs of the ensemble

Note: Substitution for principal ensembles is considered an exception to the guidelines for ensemble participation. Petitions must be submitted for each semester of substitution.

Wind/brass/percussion Music Education majors (Pre-Certification or Non-Certification) are required to fulfill two years of ensemble performance in the Marching Band. Entering students will be expected to fulfill this requirement during the Freshman and Sophomore years. Transfer students will be required to fulfill a minimum of one year. A second year may be required based upon evaluation of the transcript.

  • All full-time undergraduate music majors are required to participate each semester in the principal ensemble designated for their primary performance area:

Strings: Symphony Orchestra
Woodwind, Brass, or Percussion: University Bands (Symphonic Band, Concert Band, Wind Ensemble, Wind Symphony, Marching Band)
Voice: University Choirs (Collegiate Chorale, University Chorus)
Keyboard/Guitar: Any of the above dependent upon qualifications and/or interests.

Full-time students who fail to enroll for a major ensemble each semester will be in violation of the catalog and subject to academic action.

Note: Specific ensemble assignment is solely dependent on the result of the ensemble audition. The principal ensemble is the only ensemble that can fulfill the ensemble requirement for each degree program.

For all part-time students, participation in a principal ensemble must keep pace with the number of hours accumulated. For each 15 hours completed, at least one credit hour must be in ensemble.

  • Full-time non-degree (special) students must participate in an appropriate principal ensemble. Part-time non-degree students are not required to do so.
  • Under no circumstances will participation in amateur, semiprofessional, or professional organizations outside the University be substituted for the University requirement.

After admission to Senior College, the student may petition to have a different major ensemble substituted for the designated principal ensemble. The petition must be made prior to the ensemble auditions for the semester during which the substitution will take place. The petition will be considered by the Ensemble Directors Committee, and the student will be notified of the committee's decision prior to ensemble auditions.