Music Student Experience
Baker Music students have all the advantages an intimate, small college environment affords plus the performance opportunities of much larger schools. The student experience in the music program at Baker extends far beyond the classroom, even around the globe. This ability to offer students a wide range of musical experience makes Baker’s music program truly unique.
The Baker University Music Department Lab School offers excellent teaching experience to qualified Baker music students. Baker students are able to hone their skills by teaching beginning music students the fundamentals of their instrument right on Baker’s campus. The Lab School, managed through the music program, is just one more reason why Baker is the place for great musicians.
The National Association for Music Education is an organization on campus for students who are interested in music. Membership is open to all students, and is not restricted to music majors and minors. This organization offers a variety of activities throughout the year, including attending statewide conferences and helping with local music festivals. The club also provides a fun atmosphere for students to interact with one another and music faculty members. Learn more about NAfME.
Applied Private Lessons
Through private lessons, you’ll have the possibility to improve as a musician with the personal attention of a faculty member, who will track your progress and provide guidance. The Baker University music program offers private lessons in voice, guitar, strings, brass, woodwinds, percussion, piano and organ. These lessons offer you the opportunity to make great strides in improving your musicianship. The lessons may be taken for 1 credit (a 30 minute lesson per week) or for 2 credits (one hour lesson per week.)
With the addition of 12 new Yamaha practice room pianos, a Yamaha Grand Diskclavier, a Yamaha Conservatory grand piano, and a new Steinway D, 9-foot artist model grand piano, the keyboard instruments available to Baker students are the finest in the region. Baker’s quality facilities also include a new electronic piano laboratory for group instruction, MIDI keyboards and synthesizers in the Music Computer Lab and a 28-rank Reuter pipe organ.
Music Labs & Forums
Each Tuesday during the fall and spring semesters, the music program holds either a music lab or music forum. These are yet another opportunity for Baker music students to gain performance experience. Music majors and nonmusic majors in private lessons perform the pieces they’ve been working on at music forums, showcasing their progress in a performance setting open to the campus community. Music labs allow music students to perform before a group of peers, who then provide feedback.
Juries & Portfolio
At the end of each semester, music students and those enrolled in private lessons perform before the music faculty, who assess the progress of each student. Music majors are expected to maintain a portfolio throughout their academic career, accumulating a repertoire of performance pieces and demonstrating the student’s growth in skill and knowledge.
Junior & Senior Recitals
Music majors work closely with music faculty in selecting, researching and preparing a repertoire of vocal or instrumental music. In your junior and senior year, you will have two recitals, allowing you to showcase the skills you have acquired during your time at Baker.
Large Ensembles & Chamber Ensembles
The music ensembles at Baker are part of the core of the performance life of the university. Nearly one in four Baker students study and perform in music ensembles. Performance opportunities abound, with student musicians showcasing their talent in University Community Choir, Concert Choir, Symphonic Band, Wildcat Athletic Band and Orchestra.
Chamber ensembles provide Baker music students with a more intimate performance experience. As a music student, you can audition to take part in one of several smaller ensemble groups: Chamber Choir, String Ensemble, String Quartet, Woodwind Ensemble, Brass Ensembles, Jazz Ensembles, Percussion Ensemble and Guitar Ensemble.
The music program offers Interterm courses to offer you unique musical experiences. Every three years, the department offers an international tour to members of Baker’s choral and instrumental groups. Recent tours have included England, Ireland and Italy. You will have opportunities to enhance your musical experience on campus, as well. Musical theatre productions and area tours have also been held during these three weeks in January.
Those who study in the small community of Baldwin City aren’t limited to small-town resources. Within a short driving distance of Kansas City, Topeka and Lawrence, music students can catch performances of the world’s greatest musicians through the Lyric Opera of Kansas City, the Kansas City Symphony, the Topeka Performing Arts Center and Lawrence's Lied Center to name a few.
To obtain your certification in Music Therapy, you begin by completing a Bachelor of Arts in Music or a Bachelor of Music Education at Baker and then take up residence at the University of Kansas. During your time at KU, you will complete a six-month internship in a clinical setting approved by the National Association of Music Therapists. Upon completion of the program, you will be qualified for music therapy practice in hospitals, institutions for exceptional children and adults, community mental health facilities, geriatric facilities and other health-related settings.