Degree Requirements

Doctor of Musical Arts: Voice and Opera Performance

Program of Study (18 units)

  • VOICE 510 Applied Voice (6 units)
  • MUSIC 540 Doctoral Music Research (1 unit; offered in fall quarter)
  • MUSICOL 400 Graduate Review of History (1 unit, offered in winter quarter)
  • VOICE 580 Recital (0 units; 4 registrations required)
  • VOICE 595 Final Project Requirement (1 unit)
  • Electives in Music Studies, 300-level or above (4 units)
    1 unit from the Music Studies Elective must also fulfill the MUS THEORY coursework requirement. To cover the Music Theory coursework requirement, one of the following courses must be taken*:
    MUS_THRY 316 16th Century Counterpoint (fall)
    MUS_THRY 435 Theory of Melody (winter)
    MUS_THRY 355 Post Tonal Analysis (winter)
    MUS_THRY 318 18th Century Counterpoint (spring)
    MUS_THRY 435 Advanced Tonal Analysis/Analysis of 19th Century Music (spring)
  • Electives in Music, 300-level or above (5 units)

Voice Recital Information for DMA Candidates

Three recital options are presented below for Doctorate of Music Arts in Vocal Performance.

Candidates must choose one of the options and not “mix and match” from the different options.

Requirement Options

  1. Four (4) recitals required plus:
    Major Research Document (100 pages) OR
    One of the 4 recitals being a Lecture Recital with a Performance Document (75 pages)
    None of the recitals are self-prepared
  2. Three (3) recitals required plus
    One Lecture Recital with a Performance Document (75 pages)
    The Lecture Recital is to be self-prepared
  3. Three (3) recitals required plus
    One Lecture Recital with a Performance Document (25 pages)
    The Lecture Recital is to be self-prepared, plus
    3 additional faculty approved courses at the 400 level in Music Studies.

A Lecture Recital, in each of the options above, is to be 45 minutes of singing and 30 minutes of speaking.

A major operatic role in a Northwestern University production, a major operatic role, or oratorio, in a non-Northwestern University production may substitute for one of the recitals, with the approval of the applied professor and Voice Faculty. The only exception to the recital replacement would be the self-prepared recital or lecture recital.

For the self-prepared recital, the candidate may take lessons with her/his faculty voice teacher, but may not work on the repertoire for the self-prepared at her/his lessons. No exceptions can be made to this rule. The candidate may work with a Bienen staff coach-pianist on her/his repertoire for the self-prepared recital.

Voice Recital Guidelines

Qualifying Examination

*If three courses are taken out of the four courses for the Music Theory Requirement, DMA students will have the option to waive the theory qualifying examination. Students must receive a grade of “B” or higher in each of the three courses to achieve the exemption. Learn more about DMA Qualifying Examinations

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