Music BFA

Turn your passion and musical talent into a professional career in music – or set the stage for successful graduate studies in music. Whatever your goal, we’ll help you achieve it through personalized attention from faculty, diverse musical experiences and opportunities to perform and collaborate with other artists. 

Our BFA program offers intensive study for you to hone your skills with your voice or principal instrument. As a conservatory-style department nestled within a leading research university, our professional artist-faculty are here to inspire, support and teach you. And because we know firsthand that the music industry is highly collaborative, you’ll frequently work alongside other students, guest artists and professionals from across campus and Wisconsin’s cultural capital, Milwaukee, and beyond.  

Program Type

Major

Program Format

On Campus

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What it’s like to be a student at Peck School of the Arts

When you study music at the UW-Milwaukee Peck School of the Arts, you’ll join a supportive and collaborative community of artists. You’ll have access to state-of-the-art facilities, including performance venues, practice rooms and recording studios. In addition to performing as soloists and in ensembles, students have many opportunities to attend concerts, master classes and workshops led by world-renowned musicians and scholars. Through our strong partnerships with performance organizations in Milwaukee and the surrounding region, you’ll expand your horizons and your professional network along the way. 

But don’t take our word for it. See for yourself what it is like to be a student here by scheduling a personalized tour and info session.

Program Details

Our BFA in Music is a comprehensive, four-year program perfect for students seeking intensive study to develop those skills needed for a professional career and/or preparation for graduate school across many voice or primary instrument paths. 

Piano

Our piano program prepares you for multifaceted professional careers. You’ll work in individual and group settings receiving in-depth instruction in solo piano, chamber music, collaborative piano and piano pedagogy.  

View the Music, BFA: Piano requirements.

Collaborative Piano

Our collaborative piano program offers training for pianists anticipating careers in vocal accompanying, as well as coaching art song, opera and musical theater. You’ll receive weekly lessons in collaborative piano, as well as solo piano and piano technique. You will also participate in rehearsals and performances with campus and community groups. 

View the Music, BFA: Collaborative Piano requirements.

Guitar

Our guitar program offers a multi-style approach in which students choose a primary and secondary style focus. Classes in composition, technology, world music, pedagogy and repertoire are designed to prepare you for a versatile career in music, one that may include performing, teaching, recording and music publishing. 

View the Music, BFA: Guitar requirements.

Strings

Our strings program prepares students for modern, multifaceted professional careers as performers and/or teachers of chamber ensemble, orchestra and solo repertory. The program offers a thorough grounding in instrumental technique and repertory, and broad and continuous experience in performance. 

View the Music, BFA: Strings requirements.

Winds, Brass and Percussion

The woodwind, brass and percussion program is dedicated to teaching performance and pedagogy through private lessons, chamber music coaching and master classes. You will receive lessons and participate in woodwind, brass and percussion courses and activities. 

View the Music, BFA: Winds, Brass, and Percussion requirements.

Voice

Our voice program teaches skills for future success in music, offering solid vocal technique and knowledge of vocal health. This training is built upon a foundation of history, theory and a varied repertoire of vocal music. A spirit of genuine collaboration both within and outside of the voice area offers experiences in many musical styles, fostering future performers, pedagogues and leaders in the arts. 

View the Music, BFA: Voice requirements.

Versatile Voice

Our versatile voice program is broad enough to cover many genres and flexible enough to reflect your interest. That is because the market for professional singers is changing – opera singers are performing in musicals, Broadway performers are singing operas and pop singer training is improving dramatically. 

View the Music, BFA: Versatile Voice requirements.

Studios & Ensembles

Our studios and ensembles are led by our renowned artist faculty who have active professional careers. Studios and ensembles are structured to offer a wide variety of training and performance opportunities for musicians of various abilities. Whatever your level of skill and interest, you’ll benefit from our studios and ensembles.

Entrance Auditions/Interviews & Admission

Peck School of the Arts undergraduate and graduate programs may require additional steps to enter. For most dance, music and theatre programs, applicants must first be accepted to UWM, apply to Peck School of the Arts and complete entrance requirements such as an audition and/or interview.

Scholarships & Aid

UW-Milwaukee and Peck School of the Arts offer a diverse financial aid package for students, including Midwest residence savings, scholarships, grants, work-study opportunities and student loans.

Living Learning Communities

Live in campus housing on the same floor or wing as other students in your major or program. The Peck School of the Arts offers three Living Learning Communities where you can be a part of a “community within a community.” You’ll make friends, form study groups and do social activities together. And, best of all, there is no additional cost to be a part of a Living Learning Community.

Music Performances

With a season packed with music concerts, you’ll have many opportunities to put your hard work on display for live audiences in our performance venues. You can also support your fellow musicians by attending their performances and broaden your musical horizons through limited engagements from visiting artists and touring acts. Learn more about venues and performing arts events.

Student Recitals

Peck School of the Arts music students take the stage in solo and group student recitals throughout the school year. Students showcase musical technique and skill, while audience members enjoy exceptional performances by Milwaukee’s emerging musicians.

Internships & Opportunities

Located within the cultural capital of Wisconsin, students regularly perform professionally both as soloists and chamber musicians in the greater Milwaukee community while earning their degree. See where your education can take you. Learn more about internships and opportunities.

Student Organizations & Clubs

Meet like-minded people in a wide variety of student organizations and clubs who inspire creativity and will support your aspirations. Collaborate and create, network with professional artists, and deepen your connection with faculty, mentors and fellow students outside of the classroom.

Study Abroad

We believe that a complete education in the arts should take you beyond the classroom and the local community. By studying abroad, you’ll gain more than a change of scenery. You’ll embark on a transformative educational experience and bring a global perspective to your field of study. Explore upcoming trips offered in partnership with the Center for International Education.

Alumni Stories in Music

  • Chamber music festival in France featured four PSOA alumni who are also siblings 

    A harmonious blend of culture, heritage, and music painted the Loire Valley during the second annual Musiques et Vignes en Confluence, a chamber music festival in central France. Bernard Zinck (Associate Professor of Violin and Area Head of Strings and String Pedagogy) created the Musiques et Vignes en Confluence in …
  • UWM Student Kathryn Henry Singing In Met Opera Audition Finals

    Kathryn Henry confessed she felt "so many butterflies" when she walked on the Metropolitan Opera stage Sunday morning in New York. But that was just a quick look-see for Henry and other semifinalists in the national Met Auditions competition. When she returned later that day to sing, the University of …

Careers in Music

  • Accompanist
  • Acoustic Engineer
  • Arranger
  • Artist Management
  • Arts Administration
  • Audio Software Designer & Programmer
  • Audio/Visual Technician
  • Broadcast Engineer
  • Chamber Musician
  • Choral Music Educator
  • Clinician
  • Consultant
  • Collaborative Pianist
  • Community Arts Organizer
  • Composer
  • Concert Production/Promotion
  • Conductor
  • Cruise Ship Entertainer
  • Curator
  • Development Director
  • Diction Coach
  • Early Music Performer
  • Editor
  • Education Director
  • Elementary/Secondary School Teacher
  • Engraver
  • Ensemble Administration
  • Entertainer
  • Ethnomusicologist
  • Event Manager
  • Film Composer/Conductor
  • Foley Artist
  • Folk Music Performer
  • Foundation Administration
  • Instrumental Music Educator
  • Instrumental Performer
  • Instrument Repair/Restoration
  • Jazz Performer
  • Licensing Administrator
  • Luthier
  • Managing Director
  • Marketing & Sales
  • Mastering Engineer
  • Media Developer
  • Military Bands/Orchestras
  • Music Cognition (Science & Medicine)
  • Music Critic
  • Music Education Teacher
  • Music Historian
  • Music Librarian
  • Music Journalist/Blogger
  • Music Publicist
  • Music Store Owner
  • Music Supervisor
  • Music Therapist
  • Music Theorist
  • Musical Theatre Artist
  • Musicologist
  • Multimedia Artist
  • Opera Performer
  • Opera Dramaturg
  • Opera Management
  • Opera Prompter
  • Orchestral Musician
  • Outreach & Educational Programming
  • Peace Corps (Teaching Music Abroad)
  • Piano Tuner/Technician
  • Pit Musician
  • Private Studio Teacher
  • Producer
  • Program Notes Author
  • Promotion Manager
  • Publisher
  • Radio Manager/Broadcasting
  • Recitalist
  • Recording Artist
  • Record Label Administration
  • Singer/Vocalist
  • Songwriter/Lyricist
  • Sound Designer/Engineer
  • Sound Technician
  • Suzuki Instructor
  • Studio Musician
  • Talent Agent/Director
  • Television/Theatrical Composer
  • Theatre Stage Manager
  • University Administration
  • University Faculty
  • Video Game Scoring
  • Vocal Coach
  • Voice Therapist
  • Voiceover Artist
  • Wardrobe Specialist
  • Wigmaker

Program Faculty

Which faculty you have within this program is dependent upon your chosen courses or interests. For a list of all Music faculty and staff please follow the link below.


Elena Abend Headshot
  • Teaching Faculty IV, Piano
  • Area Head, Piano
  • Chamber Music Coach
Aaron Agulay HEADSHOT
  • Assistant Professor, Voice
  • Area Head, Voice & Opera
John Babbitt Headshot
  • Lecturer, Double Bass
David Bayles Headshot
  • Lecturer, Drum Set
  • Director, Jazz Combos & Ensembles, Afro-Caribbean Orchestra
  • Chamber Music Coach
Peter  Billmann
  • Lecturer, Jazz Guitar
Johanna Brahm Headshot
  • Lecturer, Piano
Colleen Brooks Headshot
  • Teaching Faculty II, Voice & Opera Theatre
Elina Chekan Headshot
  • Lecturer, Classical Guitar
  • Director, Suzuki Guitar
Jennifer Clippert Headshot
  • Associate Professor, Flute
  • Area Head, Woodwinds, Brass, Percussion
  • Director, Graduate Studies & Flute Ensemble
  • Chamber Music Coach
Greg Flint Headshot
  • Associate Professor, Horn
  • Director, Horn Choir
  • Chamber Music Coach
Kevin Hartman Headshot
  • Head of School, Peck School of the Arts
  • Professor, Trumpet
Mark Hoelscher Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Trombone & Euphonium
  • Chamber Music Coach
David Hoffman Headshot
  • Teaching Faculty II, Voice
  • Voice Liaison, Musical Theatre
Rene Izquierdo Headshot
  • Professor, Classical Guitar
  • Area Head, Guitar
  • Director, Guitar Ensemble
  • Chamber Music Coach
Stefan Kartman Headshot
  • Professor, Cello & String Pedagogy
  • Chamber Music Coordinator
Claudia Lasareff Mironoff Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Viola
Todd Levy Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Clarinet
Peggy Otwell Headshot
  • Teaching Faculty I, Piano, Piano Pedagogy
Nicki Roman Headshot
  • Assistant Professor, Saxophone
  • Director, Saxophone Ensemble
  • Chamber Music Coach
Wendy Rowe Headshot
  • Lecturer, Voice
  • Director, Popular Music Ensemble
Don Sipe Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Trumpet
Catherine Van Handel Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Bassoon
Vanessa Weber HEADSHOT
  • Lecturer, Voice
Alex Wier Headshot
  • Assistant Professor, Percussion
  • Area Head, Percussion
  • Director, Percussion Ensemble & Steel PANthers Steel Band
  • Co-Director, Community World Music Ensemble
Katherine Young Steele Headshot
  • Adjunct Professor, Oboe
Bernard Zinck HEADSHOT
  • Associate Professor, Violin
  • Area Head, Strings and String Pedagogy
  • Chamber Music Coach
Important Dates
Music

Entrance Audition
For Music BA, BFA and Masters programs in Spring and Fall 2024.

December 1, 2023
February 9, 2024
February 19, 2024
March 8, 2024
April 5, 2024
Accreditation

The Department of Music is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music and has been since 1964.

Contact
Music
Undergraduate Programs
Kay Speidel, music-admission@uwm.edu

Graduate Programs
Tim Noonan, tpnoonan@uwm.edu

General Info & Questions
Contact Form | 414-229-4763