Collaborating with outstanding performers is an important part of the conducting experience at Northwestern.

Students engage in rigorous academic coursework, participate in twice weekly seminars with their principal teachers, and receive opportunities to conduct the school's major ensembles. There are 17 officially sponsored performing ensembles at the Bienen School.

The school's close proximity to downtown Chicago allows for a wide range of musical enrichment activities for both performers and conductors. Students may attend performances by such world-class organizations as the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Lyric Opera of Chicago, as well as at the Ravinia Festival and concerts at Millennium Park. Countless other cultural organizations throughout the area offer additional opportunities.

Chicago and the surrounding suburbs house many community, regional, and professional orchestras. These organizations give conducting students the ability to gain professional experience while studying at the Bienen School of Music. This is not only vital to the educational process, but also in establishing the contacts needed for post-graduate success.

All DMA students receive a full-tuition scholarship, stipend, and fully subsidized health insurance.

Performing Ensembles

The Bienen School of Music sponsors 17 major ensembles, including bands, choirs, orchestras, jazz, and contemporary music ensembles.

See performing ensembles

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