MASTER OF MUSIC IN PERFORMANCE STUDIES

A collaboration between nationally recognized academic instructors and leading industry professionals, this unique one-year graduate degree program is designed to prepare students for successfully navigating the ever-changing landscape of today’s music industry while simultaneously assisting with the development of artistic identity as a performer.

The Master of Music (M.M.) from Musicians Institute combines advanced performance training with additional study in both traditional and contemporary disciplines such as music history, theory, education, research skills, recording technology, production, business relations and online brand management. Students further their performance expertise in one of five major instruments: Vocals, Keyboard, Guitar, Electric Bass or Drums.

Successful completion of both a written thesis and graduate recital are required of all candidates pursuing a M.M. in Performance from Musicians Institute. Whenever possible, visiting artists are invited into the classroom to participate in the group discussion and professional critique that serves as the intellectual foundation of the graduate program.

ENTRANCE REQUIREMENTS

Successful applicants to Musicians Institute’s Master of Music (M.M.) Performance program must hold either a Bachelor of Music (B.M.) degree or a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) with music as the primary focus. In addition to working knowledge of contemporary styles and advanced performance experience, students must demonstrate a strong academic record, language, writing & leadership skills and the ability to interact well with others while consistently displaying overall dedication to the worldwide advancement of music as an art form.

CURRICULUM

Course Title: Course Code: Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Major Area Total 25.0
Master of Music Applied Lesson 1-4 MM-B.PL, MM-D.PL, MM-G.PL,  MM-K.PL, MM-V.PL 2 2 2 2
Advanced Studio Ensemble 1-2 MM-P101-201 2 2
Graduate Performance Seminar 1-2 MM-P102-P202 1 1
21st Century Music Education MM-P307 2
Graduate Thesis MM-P210 3
Graduate Recital MM-P410 6
Supportive Music Total 16.0
Global Economics and the Performing Musician MM-P308 2
Recording Project 1-2 MM-P206-P306 2 2
Advanced History: Popular Music of the United States MM-P103 2
Contemporary Performance Styles and Analysis 1-2 MM-P104-P404 2 2
Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 1-2 MM-P105-P205 2 2
Electives Total 4.0
Various 0 0 2 2
Total 45.0 11 12 10 12
Last updated 08/17/2018

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

MAJOR AREA

MM-PL (MM-B.PL, MM-D.PL, MM-G.PL, MM-K.PL, MM-V.PL) | Applied Private Lesson | Credits: 2.00
Fostering the development of all students’ “individual voices” serves as the main objective within the graduate applied instrumental lesson program. One private lesson hour per week per quarter.

MM-P101 | Advanced Studio Ensemble 1 | Credits: 2.00
Comprised of both graduate students and senior faculty, these courses will enable students to develop the performance skills necessary for successfully navigating through contemporary music’s ever changing stylistic landscape. Group study of the physical & mental components that contribute to proper ensemble technique, sight-reading reading ability, improvisation and stylistic authenticity pertaining to key genres and repertoire serves as the curricular foundation for these performance-based classes. Two ensemble hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P201 | Advanced Studio Ensemble 2 | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P101: Advanced Studio Ensemble 1. Continuation of Advanced Studio Ensemble I. Group study of the physical & mental components that contribute to proper ensemble technique, sight-reading reading ability, improvisation and stylistic authenticity pertaining to key genres and repertoire serves as the curricular foundation for these performance based classes. Two ensemble hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P102 | Graduate Performance Seminar 1 | Credits: 1.00
This class allows students to present both research and solo/group performances relating to compositions and artists represented in contemporary music. Whenever possible, visiting artists are invited to participate in the group discourse and professional critique that serves as the intellectual foundation of Seminar I. In addition, this course functions as a primer for graduate thesis and recital presentation. One lecture hour per week for one quarter.

MM-P202 | Graduate Performance Seminar 2 | Credits: 1.00
Prerequisite: MM-P102: Graduate Performance Seminar 1. This class is a continuation of the topics covered in Graduate Performance Seminar I, but with an emphasis on original student composition. Students will present both research and solo/group performances relating to their compositions. Whenever possible, visiting artists are invited to participate in the group discourse and professional critique that serves as the intellectual foundation of Seminar II. In addition, this course functions as a primer for graduate thesis and recital presentation. One lecture hour per week for one quarter.

MM-P210 | Graduate Thesis Musician 2 | Credits: 3.00
Concurrent Enrollment of MM-P202: Graduate Performance Seminar 2 and MM-P205: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 2. The graduate thesis presents students with the opportunity to synthesize everything they have studied leading up to and during graduate study and in turn “give back” to the academic community through individual research. Ten-weekly mentoring sessions with a project advisor for one quarter, and a final presentation at the end of the quarter.

MM-P307 | 21st Century Music Education | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisites: MM-P202: Graduate Performance Seminar 2 and MM-P205: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 2. This course serves as an introduction to contemporary music performance education, the primary focus and goal being to equip advanced students with the tools necessary to become successful private teachers, small ensemble directors, and clinicians. Students and senior faculty will frequently work together helping to educate one another through mock-lesson environments established in class. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P410 | Graduate Recital | Credits: 6.00
Prerequisite: MM-P205: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 2. The graduate recital serves as the culminating performance event for all candidates pursuing a Master of Music degree in Performance from Musicians Institute. Students are responsible for selecting their own personnel and scheduling rehearsals. A complete repertoire list must be presented to both private instructor and Program Chair for approval by Week 4 of the quarter in which they expect to graduate. In addition, Program Notes giving background information about each composition to be performed must be written by the candidate and submitted to the Program Chair for approval no later than Week 8 of the quarter in which they expect to graduate. Ten-weekly mentoring sessions with a project advisor for one quarter, and a final performance at the end of the quarter.

SUPPORTIVE MUSIC

MM-P103 | Advanced History: Popular Music of the United States | Credits: 2.00
This graduate level course presents a survey of popular music genres and trends occurring in the United States from the post-civil war era through present day, with emphasis on the social, political and economic conditions affecting them. Genres to be discussed include Art songs, Spirituals & Folk music, County & Western, Blues, Bluegrass, Tin Pan Alley, Broadway, Jazz, Rock & Roll, R&B, Pop and Electronica/EDM. Additional study will center around American music’s influence on the music of other countries throughout the world. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P104 | Contemporary Performance Styles & Analysis 1 | Credits: 2.00
These performance courses examine the musical contributions of various artists in shaping the genres of Blues, Jazz, Rock and Funk/R&B. Classes will focus primarily on researching, analyzing and interpreting the compositions of representative artists. Specific attention will be paid to forging successful group dynamics and musical interplay between class-members. Weekly performance serves as a primary component of this course. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit.

MM-P105 | Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 1 | Credits: 2.00
Corequisite: MM-P102: Graduate Performance Seminar 1. Research Methods I introduces students to the analytical methodologies and bibliographic tools necessary for advanced study, writing and academic research in music. Along with analyzing and critiquing written works and sources, students will gain greater insight into the important role scholarly research plays in contributing to both the preservation and subsequent evolution of music as an art form. Level I places primary emphasis on the development of student research-skills. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit.

MM-P205 | Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 2 | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P105: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 1. Research Methods II places primary emphasis on the development of reading & writing-skills necessary for successfully completing the graduate thesis requirement, among other future academic endeavors. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P206 | Recording Project 1 | Credits: 1.00
Prerequisite: MM-P101: Advanced Studio Ensemble 1 and MM-P102: Graduate Performance Seminar 1. These courses prepare students for successfully navigating various recording studio environments as both artist and auxiliary participant. Recording Project I focuses on recording history, general acoustic theory, studio terminology, recording equipment setup, signal chain basics, the fundamentals of session preparation, timbral ear training & live tracking techniques using digital recording software. One lecture hour per week for one quarter.

MM-P306 | Recording Project 2 | Credits: 1.00
Prerequisite: MM-P206: Recording Project 1. This course builds upon the preproduction techniques learned in the previous course and focuses on practical application. While similar in design, it places primary emphasis on the recording, mixing, mastering and commercial presentation of student performances. One lecture hour per week for one quarter.

MM-P308 | Global Economics & the Performing Musician | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisites: MM-P102: Graduate Performance Seminar 1 and MM-P105: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 1. This course provides an overview of the music industry and its future prospects within the realm of global entertainment. Students will study and critique the varying dynamics at work pertaining to the production of “musical culture” between trans-national media conglomerates, independent companies, artists and the public. Additional focus will center on the role of music in the age of computers and the Internet and how the aforementioned technologies have altered the course and overall identity of the industry as a whole. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P404 | Contemporary Performance Styles & Analysis 2 | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P104: Contemporary Performance Styles & Analysis 1. This is the continuation of Contemporary Performance Styles & Analysis I. Students will analyze Brazilian, Folk, Afro-Cuban & Pop performance genres. Weekly performances and group analysis serve as the primary focus of these courses. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit.

ELECTIVES

MM-P120E | Music Technology in Live Performance | Credits: 2.00
This course explores the role of music technology as a tool for enhancing live performance. Curricular topics include click track programming, backing track production, sound replacement techniques, triggers, samples and equalization along with additional approaches to timbre modification. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P121E | Website Design for Musicians | Credits: 2.00
This course serves as an introduction to web design and self-promotion, the primary focus being to teach students how to build and maintain a fully functional and self-owned professional website, complete with E-commerce capability. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P122E | Social Media & Online Brand Management | Credits: 2.00
This course serves as an introduction to the study of both physical and online media management systems and marketing techniques employed by successful solo artists, groups, companies and labels. Partial curricular topics include image/brand theory & psychology, online marketing techniques & research, press release construction, email, mailing list & general etiquette considerations, funding & revenue stream generation and business plan development. Whenever possible, visiting artists and industry professionals will be invited to participate in class discussion and presentations. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P125E | Lyric Writing 1: Introduction to Lyric Writing | Credits: 2.00
This course enables students to develop the skills necessary to create, analyze, critique, and revise song lyrics in the contemporary songwriting market. Students will learn important concepts relating to lyrics, including finding inspiration, mastering tools of the craft, and tailoring lyrics to different styles and situations. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P225E | Lyric Writing 2 | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P125E: Lyric Writing 1: Introduction to Lyric Writing. This course enables students to develop the skills necessary to create, analyze, critique, and revise song lyrics in the contemporary songwriting market. Students will learn important concepts relating to lyrics, including finding inspiration, mastering tools of the craft, and tailoring lyrics to different styles and situations. This course will introduce advanced story-telling techniques. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P126E | The Performing Music Director | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P101: Advanced Studio Ensemble 1 & Approval of Program chair. This course explores the practical techniques and strategies used by producers, composer/performers, arrangers and music directors in successfully assembling performance personnel for recording and live situations. Critical listening and research along with compositional analysis of requisite artists and performances spanning a wide array of musical genres serves as the primary focus of this course. In addition, students will develop arrangements and write compositions inspired by the various skill-sets possessed by fellow classmates. Whenever possible, visiting artists and industry professionals will be invited to participate in class discussion and presentations. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter.

MM-P131E | Special Topics in Music Theory: Advanced Counterpoint | Credits: 2.00
This comprehensive music theory course explores the compositional practice of multiple independent melodic line construction through the various eras of western music history (Medieval through 21st Century). Analysis of the contrapuntal techniques employed by many of popular music’s most prolific songwriters serves as the primary focus of this course. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit with offering of new topic.

MM-P132E | Special Topics in Music Business: Intellectual Property Law | Credits: 2.00
This course explores the area of law that deals with protecting the rights of those who create original works. Analysis of copyright, patents and trademarks, the three main instruments used for protecting intellectual property, will serve as the primary focus of this course. Additional curricular topics include recording, publishing, artist management & merchandising agreements, legal precedent, licensing, negotiation, “points”, royalties and brand management considerations. Whenever possible, visiting artists and industry professionals will be invited to participate in class discussion and presentations. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit with offering of new topic.

MM-P133E | Special Topics in Music History: Music, Culture, & Ideas | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisites: MM-P102: Graduate Performance Seminar 1 and MM-P105: Research Methods for the Contemporary Musician 1. This advanced survey course examines the complex relationships between music and religion, politics, economics, race relations, history & gender and their subsequent influences in shaping various forms of cultural identity throughout the world. An examination of musical performance practices by traditionally underrepresented populations will serve as the primary focus of this course. Whenever possible, visiting artists will be invited to participate in class discussion and presentations. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit with offering of new topic.

MM-P134E | Special Topics in Music Improvisation: 1959 | Credits: 2.00
Prerequisite: MM-P101: Advanced Studio Ensemble 1 & Approval of Program chair. This course examines the recorded musical contributions of Jazz artists Miles Davis (“Kind of Blue”), Charles Mingus (“Mingus Ah Um”), John Coltrane (Giant Steps”), Dave Brubeck (“Time Out”) & Ornette Coleman (“The Shape of Jazz to Come”), whose seminal albums were each released in 1959. Analysis of various compositions and improvisational techniques employed by the aforementioned artists along with their subsequent cultural contributions will serve as the primary focus of this course. Specific attention will be paid to forging successful group dynamics and interplay between class members. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit with offering of new topic.

MM-PSL (MM-B.PSL, MM-D.PSL, MM-G.PSL, MM-K.PSL, MM-V.PSL) | Secondary Applied Private Lesson | Credits: 2.00
This is a course for students who wish to study privately with an instructor on an additional instrument of their choosing. Students may choose from the following instruments: vocals, guitar, keyboard, bass or drums. Two lecture hours per week for one quarter. May be repeated for credit.

COURSE CATALOG

For detailed course information and more, check out our Course Catalog!

GRADUATE INDUSTRY-READY

Upon graduating with your Master of Music Degree from Musicians Institute you will enter the workforce with:

  • EPK (Electronic Press Kit)
  • Commercial quality recordings and charts of your compositions & arrangements.
  • High-Definition videos of performances & recording Projects
  • Full scores demonstrating notation, arranging & transcription skills
  • Research and writing skills allowing for the publication of articles and scholarly research
  • Production & marketing skills for use with self-promotion & online brand-management

CAREER OPTIONS

The Master of Music Program provides graduates with essential knowledge and skills that may lead to careers in:

Performer/Recording
Artist Arranger
Film/TV Composer
Songwriter
Transcriptionist
Teacher

Mixing/Mastering Engineer
Studio Technician
Author/Music Critic
Studio Musician/Accompanist
Band Member/Sideman
Sound Designer

Music Director
Orchestrator
Multimedia Developer
Artist Relations Representative
Product Representative
Research Associate

FACULTY

LYMAN MEDEIROS

CREDITS: STEVE TYRELL, RANDY BRECKER, JANE MONHEIT, THE BOSTON POPS, MICHAEL BUBLÉ

JOE BAGG

CREDITS: BOBBY HUTCHERSON, BILL HOLMAN, BILLY HIGGNS, ANTHONY WILSON, CHARLES McPHERSON

KEN ROSSER

CREDITS: SMOKEY ROBINSON, MIKE EINZIGER (INCUBUS), NELS CLINE (WILCO), TODD RUNDGREN

IAN ROBBINS

CREDITS: BARRY MANILOW, BONNIE RAITT, WYNTON MARSALIS

JEFF COLELLA

CREDITS: LOU RAWLS, JAZZ TAP ENSEMBLE

DEVIN KELLY

CREDITS: CINESAMPLES & SONICSMITHS, CLARK TERRY, BOB BROOKMEYER

FACILITIES

  • Full production sound stages and recording studios
  • Fully equipped 24/7 practice facilities and computer labs with the latest industry standard equipment
  • Concert Hall access, with full audio/video recording capabilities
  • Multiple performance and recording studios available for student practice
  • Security on campus 24/7

WHY MI?

New Technology

MI offers a digital-based BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) curriculum, providing a comprehensive music education with exclusive downloadable eBooks available on any mobile platform.

Professional

Instructors are working professionals, touring and recording with top artists, who bring their experiences back to the classroom.

24-7 Access

Over 75 Private practice labs, 12 performance rehearsal rooms and 30 project recording studios are available for all your needs.

Hollywood Campus

MI’s state-of-the-art campus in the heart of the entertainment industry has a Concert Hall, computer labs, classrooms with full backline and a fully-equipped Music Library.

Personalized

Small class sizes, private lessons and Open Counseling sessions mean you get personalized attention and guidance from a variety of instructors.

All Music

500+ courses are offered every academic Quarter, covering a wide variety of core & elective subjects in music and the entertainment industry.

READY TO ROCK?

The first step in applying to any MI program is to complete an Application for Admission, and get started with the best music college!

QUESTIONS?

Have a question for our music school? Our admissions department is available to answer your questions, give us a call!

COURSE CATALOG

Program requirements of our music school, as well as tuition for individual programs, and course information.