How much conducting time do students receive each week?
Choral conducting students work regularly with three types of choruses; community, collegiate, and professional. They work with the Bard Symphonic Chorus and the Bard Chamber Singers on Bard’s campus and they travel to New York City to work with the professional Bard Conductors Chorale. Additionally, students have opportunities to conduct on chorus concerts and assist with the Graduate Vocal Arts program mainstage opera. Opportunities to conduct instrumentalists are also available to choral conducting students.
Orchestral conducting students have bi-weekly sessions with the Orchestral Conductors Ensemble, a small ensemble of members of The Orchestra Now and the Bard Conservatory Orchestra. Preparation for these sessions is done through regular class work with piano. Students also work once each semester with full orchestra in special reading sessions with the Bard Conservatory Orchestra.
Are there other opportunities to conduct in the greater Bard community?
In the past, conducting students have participated in the following additional opportunities:
- Serving as assistant conductor for the Bard College Orchestra
- Performing undergraduate composition projects and opera scenes
- Assisting with the graduate operas
- Performing the Graduate Vocal Arts Program’s Winter SongFest
- Volunteering for homeschooled ensembles
- Creating and directing extracurricular ensembles
Will I have the additional opportunity to perform with my primary instrument?
Yes, there are many opportunities to continue performing. Some past examples include:
- Performing in the required composition class
- Participating in the Bard College Orchestra
- Performing in other students’ recitals
- Forming extracurricular chamber ensembles
What are past Graduate Conducting students doing now?
The unique and hands-on opportunities available to the Bard Conservatory Graduate Conducting Program have lead our students to exciting and varied careers. Distinctions of our graduates include:
Ensembles and Institutions: BBC Symphony; Brooks School, director of choral and classical music; Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Orchestra, assistant conductor; Collegiate Chorale, assistant conductor; Hilliard Ensemble; Luzerne Music Center; New York Youth Symphony; Opera Philadelphia; Tulsa Oratorio Chorus, assistant artistic director
Festivals: Bang on a Can Marathon; Night at Proms 2015; Opera Company of the Highlands 2011
Venues: Carnegie Hall; Le poisson rouge; Lincoln Center; Merkin Concert Hall
Is it possible for conducting students to take regular Bard College classes?
Due to the very full curriculum of the Graduate Conducting Program, it is generally not possible for students to take additional college courses.