2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog

School of Music

School of Music Overview

The School of Music offers the Bachelor of Music degree (BM) with majors in performance, piano pedagogy, theory/composition, and church music; the Bachelor of Music Education degree (BME) with a concentration in vocal or instrumental music in preparation for all-level certification; the Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) in music; and a music minor.


Acceptance to the School of Music requires passing an audition in the primary performance and scholarly area. Before an audition can be scheduled, applicants must submit a completed School of Music Audition Request Application, a résumé highlighting musical activities and an essay discussing a musical topic or experience. In addition, two separate letters of recommendation attesting to the candidate's musical accomplishments and ability must be provided. These required materials are uploaded through the School of Music Web site.

Applicants applying in music composition must also mail physical copies of original scores and papers to the School of Music in support of their application. Applicants unable to visit the campus for a live audition may submit a video audition with the above required materials. Detailed audition repertoire requirements as well as mailing instructions are available on the School of Music website.

After satisfying all of the above requirements, final acceptance to the School of Music is contingent on being admitted to TCU.

Pre-Major Status

All incoming music students are designated as music pre-majors (MUPM). A student must complete the above application requirements and pass an audition in the primary performance and scholarly area in order to be eligible for music major status. Once eligible, the student completes and submits a signed Change of Major form to the School of Music office.

Honors College

Music majors who plan to pursue Departmental Honors must be members of the Honors College and should enroll in MUSI 40003 the fall semester of their senior year.

School Facilities

The TCU School of Music is housed in historic Ed Landreth Hall, the Mary D. and F. Howard Walsh Center for Performing Arts, Secrest-Wible Building, Foster Hall, Waits Hall and Jarvis Hall and the new TCU Music Center. The Ed Landreth building includes the music offices and conference room; teaching studios; classrooms, a computer lab; practice and rehearsal facilities; and a 1,200-seat auditorium, once home to the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Instrumental resources include numerous upright and grand pianos, four pipe organs, two harpsichords, a clavichord and a collection of authentic Baroque instruments.

The Walsh Center is home to the unique 325-seat PepsiCo Recital Hall, which is well known for its unprecedented acoustical design. The Walsh Center also contains an instrumental rehearsal hall, a choral rehearsal hall, an electronic piano laboratory, piano teaching studios and piano practice rooms all furnished exclusively with Steinway pianos.

The Music Center includes over 7,500 square feet of band, orchestra and percussion rehearsal space, as well as instructional facilities, faculty studios and practice rooms. At the heart of this new building is the Van Cliburn Concert Hall at TCU, an intimate 700-seat, state of the art hall.

Located on the southeast side of the TCU campus, the Secrest-Wible Building serves the TCU Opera and contains a 100-seat rehearsal studio theatre, classroom, and the John Large Vocal Arts Laboratory.

The third floor of Jarvis Hall contains teaching studios, two classrooms, the Upchurch Studio for Electro-Acoustic Music, the Music Education Resource Library and the School of Music student lounge.

In addition to these five buildings, practice rooms and teaching studios are located in Waits and Foster residence halls; and a large, comprehensive music library complete with recordings, reference books, texts, scores, and a listening room is housed in the Mary Couts Burnett Library.

School of Music Requirements

Keyboard Skills

Unless exempted by testing, all music majors, register for MUSI 11030, (Class Piano), in the first semester, and must continue in classes until they pass the Keyboard Proficiency exam. This requirement must be met by the end of the sophomore year. Students are not allowed to register for upper-division courses in music until this requirement is met. Piano and organ majors meet this requirement by taking MUSI 20071 and 20081, (Functional Piano).


All music majors participate in school and studio recitals. Students majoring in performance are required to present a half recital during their junior year and a full recital during their senior year. Students majoring in music education are required to present a half recital, typically the semester before student teaching.


A jury examination takes place each semester for majors and minors in performance courses and annually for theory/composition majors beginning the sophomore year. At the end of the sophomore year, this examination determines whether the student is permitted to enroll in upper-division performance and composition lessons. The junior jury and/or recital determine admission to senior standing for performance majors.

Recital/Concert Attendance

Music majors are required to pass MUSI 11000, Recital/Concert - Attendance (Recital Hour), for each regular semester. This is a pass/fail, zero-credit hour course. First-year students may enroll in UNLF 10211, University Life, during the fall semester and then take Recital Hour in the spring. B.M.E. students do not take Recital Hour the semester they are student teaching. Ninth semester students are not required to enroll in Recital Hour.

To receive credit, students must attend a total of 15 events each semester; 6 classes and 9 performances, chosen from faculty and guest artist recitals, student recitals and TCU ensemble concerts. Programs must be signed by a TCU faculty member at the end of the concert for it to count toward attendance. At the end of the semester, students fill out a Recital Hour Concert Attendance sheet and submit a packet of signed programs. The packet is due in the SoM office by 5 p.m. Friday after the last day of classes.

Two-steps ensure that students in the School of Music are fulfilling the requirements for Recital Hour:

  • Students must pass 3 semesters of Recital Hour before they are eligible to sign up for their sophomore barrier.
  • Students must pass 6 semesters of Recital Hour before they are eligible to sign up for their senior recital.

Failure to do these steps may impact progress toward completion the degree program.

Passing Grade Requirement

All music courses taken in the major or minor sequences must be passed with a grade of "C" or better to fulfill graduation requirements.

Performance Major Requirements

The School of Music offers the BM with a major in performance in the following areas:

  • Piano
  • Organ
  • Piano Pedagogy
  • Wind and Percussion Instruments
  • String Instruments
  • Voice