Opportunities to study and make music at Notre Dame are wide-ranging, from majors and minors to lessons and performance ensembles.
Why study Music?
Studying music at Notre Dame offers avenues to build on the strengths, experiences, and training you bring to the program as well as new opportunities to engage deeply with familiar and unfamiliar sounds, traditions, and ways of understanding music through theories, histories, and cultures ranging from the Western classical tradition to musics around the world.
Our curriculum combines a strong foundation with a variety of advanced electives. It is designed to prepare you for professional careers in performance and academic study of music. You can also pair music with any other major if you wish to further your musical development while developing your knowledge in another subject, from anthropology to finance to computer science. The knowledge and skills developed through studying music will help you thrive in a wide variety of fields after graduation.
Learn more about how 100% of music majors have found success within 6 months of graduation.
As a music major, you can choose between two overlapping concentrations in academics and performance, with academic track students taking lessons and performance students enrolling in history, theory, and ethnomusicology courses. An honors option is available if you intend to pursue graduate study in music after graduation. Acceptance into the honors track is by invitation of the faculty during the spring semester of your sophomore year.
Beginning in Fall 2023, we are happy to offer a Minor in Music, an exciting 18-credit course of study that combines history, theory, and performance, with a lot of variety and pathways, including the option of applied lessons.
There are also two interdisciplinary minors: the Minor in Musical Theatre in conjunction with the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre is a 15-credit course of study in which you have flexibility to structure your curriculum to suit your interests in singing, acting, or songwriting, or working as conductor, impresario, stage director, or researcher. The Liturgical Music Ministry Minor is a 15-credit course of study focused on the history and theology of music in liturgical contexts.
How do I get started in music?
Undergraduates at Notre Dame do not formally declare their majors until their sophomore year. However, potential music majors ideally should begin their musical studies during their first year by taking Theory I and II, Musicianship I and II, participating in ensembles, and signing up for lessons. All interested students should indicate their intent to major in music to First Year Advising and to the Department of Music. Students will be assigned an adviser within the department for guidance with the completion of the curriculum.
Students applying to Notre Dame are invited to apply for the music major during the college admissions process. Current Notre Dame students with a particular interest in the performance concentration should also contact the department to arrange a meeting or audition with the principal faculty member in their particular instrumental or vocal area.
Professor Daniel Schlosberg
Director of Undergraduate Studies