From the first semester of their freshman year through the final weeks of their senior experience, students at Duquesne achieve incredible growth as musicians. The Musicianship program provides an integral foundation for this growth. Through the Musicianship sequence, students learn the skills, analytical techniques, historical styles and practices necessary for developing a professional level of musical ability and literacy. Furthermore, students are encouraged to apply this knowledge to their own lives as musicians, through the analysis of performance, creative projects in composition, and critical thinking about the place of music within society.
Every day in the classroom, members of the Musicianship faculty seek to guide, inspire, and challenge students on the pathway toward becoming skilled, knowledgeable, and passionately dedicated musicians. Students benefit from having full-time professors dedicated to their musical development. Class sizes are small (15 – 20 students), ensuring that professors are able to assess each individual’s strengths and weaknesses. There is always a helping hand for those who may be struggling, just as there is advice and guidance for those who seek to further expand their skills.
It is important to note that the members of the Musicianship Department are, above all else, musicians themselves. The faculty is comprised of active performers, composers and researchers whose work contributes not only to the artistic community of Western Pennsylvania, but also to the global community of musicians. With performances, fellowships and presentations spanning the United States as well as Europe, Asia, Africa, and South America, our faculty stands in contact with the most vital musical developments throughout the world. While the faculty brings a wealth of professional experience to the School of Music, our principle objective is to translate this experience into great teaching. Particularly on the graduate level but with attention to outstanding undergraduates as well, students are encouraged to develop innovative scholarly projects. Following the advice of their faculty mentors, it is not uncommon for students to submit their creative work to academic publications or conferences.