Music (MM)

Program Overview

The Master of Music degree program at Binghamton University offers high-quality, intense study of music within a liberal-arts environment at one of the top public universities in the Northeast United States. Graduate music students receive personal attention from nationally and internationally renowned faculty, and students have numerous opportunities to work with guest artists through workshops, master classes, reading sessions and performances.

Graduates of Binghamton University’s MM program have performed in major opera houses, received national awards in performance and composition, gone on to doctoral studies at major universities and conservatories, and found success as educators.

The Master of Music program consists of seven concentrations:

Prospective students are encouraged to apply by February 1 in order to be considered fully for assistantships and fellowships. Please contact the Director of Graduate Studies in Music for more information.

Degrees Offered

  • MM in Music

After You Graduate

Alumni of Binghamton have gone onto various careers as musical educators at a university level, secondary level, or in freelance coaching. Others perform in a number of venues and contexts, or have proceeded to further graduate study. Besides TCO, our instrumental and choral groups have had the chance to accompany professional groups in the area in collaborative performances. Meanwhile composition students at Binghamton have competed at (and won) national competitions. The university’s Career Development Center is a further resource that can help students prepare for interviews, put together resumes, and find networking opportunities.

Admissions Requirements

To be eligible for graduate study, you must:

  • Provide a complete set of your undergraduate (and, if applicable, graduate) transcripts showing one of the following:
    • You have earned a bachelor's degree (or its equivalent) from a nationally or regionally accredited college or university
    • You are within one academic year of earning a bachelor’s degree (or its equivalent) from a nationally or regionally accredited college or university
    • You are eligible to apply as part of a memorandum of understanding between your current institution and Binghamton University
  • Have earned, at minimum, one of the following:
    • A 3.0 GPA over your entire undergraduate career
    • A 3.0 GPA during your last 60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits of your undergraduate degree, with most courses graded regularly (not as "pass/fail")
    • A 3.0 GPA in a graduate degree, with most courses graded regularly (not as "pass/fail")
    • In consideration of the different grading scales used around the world, each academic department evaluates international transcripts to determine on a case-by-case basis whether they demonstrate one of the above requirements.

All applicants should contact the director of graduate studies directly prior to submitting application materials for specific information pertaining to specialization-specific requirements, screening recordings, auditions and other aspects of the application process.

To apply, you must submit the following materials. For general guidelines for these materials, see the Admission Requirements website.

  • Online graduate degree application with graduate degree application fee
  • Transcripts from each college or university that you have attended
    • An undergraduate degree in music is desirable for admission. Candidates with majors in other fields may be considered on a case-by-case basis if there is evidence of significant undergraduate music coursework in performance, music theory and music history.
  • Personal statement of 2 to 3 pages describing your reasons for pursuing graduate study, your career aspirations, your special interests within your field, and any unusual features of your background that might need explanation or be of interest to the graduate admissions committee
  • Résumé or curriculum vitae detailing both educational and professional experience
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Official GRE scores for music history and literature applicants
  • Additional, concentration-specific application materials, which are uploaded to the Portfolio section of the online application. Materials are listed below, as well as on the department apply page.
    • For collaborative piano candidates: Click here for specific requirements. Auditions will begin in late February and will be arranged with the head of the program.
    • For composition candidates: PDF files of two or more recent, contrasting scores --- and accompanying recordings, as possible. MIDI versions are acceptable, but please include live recordings when available. Skype interviews will be held beginning in mid-February and are arranged by email with the program coordinator.
    • For conducting applicants: A recently recorded video file (10-30 minutes) of rehearsal and performance conducting; a recent audio file on the candidate's major instrument or voice, including at least two composition(s) in contrasting styles; and a resume of conducting experience, repertoire and career goals. Auditions will begin in February.
    • For instrumental performance applicants: A recently recorded pre-audition video file including at least two compositions in contrasting styles. Auditions with instrumental faculty will begin in February.
    • For music history and literature applicants: Official GRE scores and examples of written work. Interviews will be arranged by one of the musicology faculty.
    • For opera or vocal performance applicants: A recently recorded pre-audition video file including at least four compositions in contrasting styles, one each in English, French, German and Italian. Opera/oratorio and song literature should be included. Auditions will be held at Binghamton University on the weekend of February 14-16, 2020 and will be arranged with the program coordinator.

International students must also submit the following materials. For more information about these materials, see the International Students section of the Admission Requirements website.

  • International Student Financial Statement (ISFS) form
  • Supporting financial documentation (such as bank statements, scholarship or sponsor letters, etc.)
  • Proof of English proficiency (such as official TOEFL/IELTS/PTE Academic/Duolingo* scores)
    • *In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Graduate School at Binghamton University has temporarily approved the use of the Duolingo English Test as proof of English proficiency through the 2023 application cycle.

This information is subject to change. While we make every effort to update these program pages, we recommend that you contact the department with questions about program-specific requirements.


Degree Fall Spring
Music (MM)Rolling (February 10 Funding)Rolling (November 1 Recommended)

For more information, visit the Music website.