Preparing the Next Generation of Conductors, Educators and Performers
The Master of Music Program (MM) at California Baptist University is one of the region’s most prestigious and recognized programs for the advanced learning of music theory and application. The program has three concentration options: Music Education, Conducting and Performance, all accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. The Conducting and Music Education concentrations prepare students to become accomplished conductors and effective educators within a variety of educational and religious settings. The Performance concentration equips aspiring performers with the skills, experience and confidence required to perform at the professional level, continue on to doctoral studies or to teach private lessons.
The CBU Master of Music program was developed by Dr. Gary Bonner, Founding Dean of the Shelby and Ferne Collinsworth School of Music and world-renowned conductor of church choral music. Since Dr. Gary Bonner's retirement in May 2012, the program is now under the leadership of Dr. Judd Bonner, who has 25 years of experience building and conducting choral and instrumental groups of all sizes and varieties. Through his unique perspective on connection with the ensemble members and the audience, energetic and enlivened performance style, and repertoire that resonates with a wide audience, Dr. Judd Bonner has successfully developed exciting and in-demand ensembles for the church, the school, and the university. Graduate students will benefit from direct access to Dr. Bonner's experience and expertise. He will be the lead conducting instructor in the MM program, joined by other outstanding, doctorally prepared and experienced School of Music faculty.
Recognized Faculty with Real-World Experience
CBU's distinguished School of Music faculty includes educators, conductors and performers with real-world experience teaching and performing in an array of private and public venues as well as educational and religious settings. Many of our faculty have built successful choral and instrumental groups as well as music programs. Instructors bring their working knowledge into the classroom experience, supplementing theory with practical applications.
Because MM class sizes are limited to no more than 17 students per class, students develop strong, supportive relationships with their faculty as well as fellow candidates. Students working toward their performance concentration additionally have the option to study with the instructor of their choice.
Advancing Your Knowledge and Career
One of the field's most recognized degrees from one of the region's most respected learning institutions, CBU's MM advances your expertise and value as a conductor, performer, and/or educator in a variety of educational, performance and religious environments. CBU's MM degree goes beyond traditional graduate programs, as well, by preparing candidates to establish, build and direct successful music programs that inspire excitement within schools and congregational communities.
Beyond the Classroom
CBU's MM program extends the learning experience beyond the classroom walls, allowing students the opportunity to put music theory into practice. Candidates engage with faculty and fellow students in a variety of environments and settings, including conducting seminars, reading sessions, and master classes. Students also benefit from our newest facility, the JoAnn Hawkins Music Building, equipped with the latest technology, including a multi-million dollar state-of-the-art recording studio, music labs, and 27 private rehearsal rooms each furnished with a baby grand piano.
Students concentrating in conducting have the unique opportunity to conduct CBU's exceptional orchestra, symphony, choral groups or other on-campus instrumental groups. Performance majors perform recitals on campus as well as at other stellar venues. Students may choose to join a wide variety of on-campus choral and instrumental groups, or start their own. This invaluable experience conducting and performing with others before a live audience builds confidence as well as competence.