The 21st Century Musician Initiative is a complete re-imagining of the skills, tools and experiences necessary to create musicians of the future instead of the past—flexible, entrepreneurial musicians that find diverse musical venues and outlets in addition to traditional performance spaces, develop new audiences and utilize their music innovatively to impact and strengthen communities.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does the initiative include?
It includes the expected training of any serious music school including:
• Individual training in applied music to achieve artistic excellence
• Rigorous coursework in music theory, music history and other courses within the School of Music and the College of Liberal Arts
• Large and small ensemble experiences and performances
• Opera and musical theater productions
It also includes:
• A revised curriculum
• The creation of premier undergraduate touring chamber ensembles
• New recording opportunites
• Visits by living composers
• Performances in atypical venues
• A guest artist series
• National and international touring
• Interdisciplinary festivals
• Innovative performances
• Educational experiences for students to work as teaching artists
Beyond the impact on the School of Music, this initiative will create opportunities to reiterate, reinforce and demonstrate the power and importance of music in the life well-lived for liberal arts students at DePauw and the wider community.
What other changes would a music student experience as part of this initiative?
More than a set of courses, this initiative will be an ethos at DePauw. From their first days on campus, music students at DePauw will be surrounded by opportunities and expectations to “make a difference” with music. Every musician will be trained to think creatively and entrepreneurially about music, musical opportunities and about the future of music.
Every student will develop a new focus on the power of music in communities and the imperative to consistently cultivate new audiences. Initiatives such as the Greencastle Middle School Adoption that the School of Music implemented in 2012 will provide opportunities for students to work in public schools and develop school-aged programming for their own music. The opportunity to work in the Preparatory Program will help them develop their teaching skills. Performances in atypical venues such as Almost Home and Starbucks, and opportunities to provide meaningful musical engagement in senior centers, retirement homes, churches, pre-schools and the like will abound.
Why is DePauw well positioned to deliver this initiative?
DePauw is well positioned to create 21st century musicians because:
• It provides a fully accredited school of music focused on undergraduate students alongside a premier liberal arts college of national prominence.
• Our School of Music creates the 21st century musician; our College of Liberal Arts promotes the value of the life well lived. This synergy affords School of Music students the opportunity to establish community and audience-development skills while providing opportunities for meaningful engagement in the arts to the liberal arts students.
• School of Music students can pursue study outside the traditional music education curriculum with complete access to what is offered in the College of Liberal Arts.
• DePauw encourages College of Liberal Arts students to observe, participate, study, engage and/or perform along with the School of Music students.
• It allows numerous opportunities for undergraduates to perform (to “be heard”) as there are no graduate students with whom to compete.
• While DePauw expects excellence in musical performance, it provides students the foundation to shape a life in music that could include arts administration, arts advocacy, or musical entrepreneurship.
What attributes do we expect our graduates to have as 21st Century Musicians?
DePauw’s 21st century musicians will be:
• Skilled in their music discipline of choice
• Flexible in their performance experiences and opportunities
• Creative and innovative in developing new pathways, performances and organizations
• Entrepreneurial in spirit and in their pursuit of music as a vocation or avocation
• Experienced in connecting and motivating people through the transformative power of music
• Passionate in advocating the value of the arts in a life well lived
What kind of careers or opportunities can graduates of this initiative expect?
21CM graduates will have the skills that all undergraduate musicians gain, but will also understand how to connect to modern audiences and how to find their own niche in a competitive market. While some may become flexible performers, others will apply their skills to a wide variety of careers, such as arts managers, teachers, administrators, or arts advocates.