Music Performance

Music Performance

Converse Music Performance

Are you a passionate lover of music? Are you a driven performer? Do you want to develop your musical talent in a caring, professional environment?

Consider studying Music Performance at Converse College, the nation’s only professional school of music within a liberal arts college for women and the first women’s college in the world to be named an All-Steinway School.

Degrees Offered

Related Degrees

About Music Performance

Students from throughout the world have made their way to Converse’s Petrie School of Music to study Performance with our artist-teacher faculty. The main focus is individual performance instruction, but the program also emphasizes music theory and history/literature, pedagogy and ensemble participation.

Music PerformanceThe Converse environment promotes a strong work ethic within a caring and supportive atmosphere. Our students push themselves and encourage each other to be the best musicians they can be.

More reasons to choose Converse:

  • Our remarkably low 7:1 student/teacher ratio ensures ongoing personal interaction with faculty.
  • You’ll gain valuable experience teaching lessons in the Lawson Academy of the Arts, just part of the “Creativity That Works” program that will prepare for life as a professional.
  • You’ll have the chance to interact with some of the world’s most accomplished musicians in master classes and workshops.
  • Our reputation has attracted students from Ireland, Italy, Egypt, Sri Lanka, Panama, El Salvador, Ecuador, and beyond.
  • Our faculty are professional artists who have collectively performed in 48 states and in 47 countries.


Travel Opportunities

As a Petrie School of Music student, you’ll have opportunities to study and perform both nationally and internationally.

My Summer at Brevard Music Center

Hannah Powell ’15 spent a summer at the Brevard Music Center on a full scholarship. Surrounded by many incredible musicians, Hannah said, “I thrived on the passion for music I could feel in the air.” Read more.

Vlogging the German Music FestivalVlogging the German Music Festival

Students from the Converse Orchestra and Converse Chamber Singers traveled to Oppennau, Germany to perform at the Festwoche klassischer Musik and get an in-depth exposure to German culture and European arts. Watch the video blog.

Performance Opportunities

The Petrie School of Music provides over 150 performance opportunities a year including:

  • Weekly student recitals
  • A staged, costumed major opera presented each year by the Converse Opera Theatre in addition to one-act operas and opera scenes

    Performance Opportunities

  • Performances by the Converse Symphony Orchestra
  • Performances by the Spartanburg Festival Chorus which often include large-scale works with orchestra
  • Performances by the Converse Wind Ensemble
  • Several annual concerts by the Converse Chorale
  • Apprentice program with the Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra

In addition, you can create your own ensemble centered on your interests and earn academic credit!

Guest Artists

Each year, some of the world’s most accomplished musicians visit the Petrie School to perform and conduct master classes. Recent artists include:

  • Chanticleer, Grammy Award-winning chamber ensemble
  • Joan Tower, Grammy Award-winning composer
  • Libby Larsen, acclaimed composer and producer
  • Boston Brass
  • Guarneri String Quartet
  • David Daniels, the world’s foremost countertenor
  • Dame Evelyn Glennie, acclaimed solo percussionist and composer

Music Performance CourseworkThe Bachelor of Music (BM) in Performance will equip you for graduate study for a professional career as a classical musician.

In addition to receiving weekly private lessons, you’ll also attend weekly studio seminars conducted by the primary teacher.

About thirty-six percent of the courses required for the Bachelor of Music degree in Performance are performance and performance-related courses, thirty percent are music history and music theory courses, twenty-four percent are general education required courses and electives, and ten percent are ensemble, conducting, and music elective courses.

For full course requirements, see the academic catalog.

What are common careers with a Music Performance degree?

Perform in a professional orchestra. Sing with a professional opera company or choral organization. Perform solo and chamber recitals. Become a coach or collaborative pianist. Teach in public or private schools. Teach privately, or as a college professor. Work in churches and community musical organizations. Work in arts management. Attend law school. The discipline acquired through performance study will you serve you well in any profession.

What are Music Performance alumnae doing?

Our graduates can be found on Broadway, in major symphony orchestras, opera houses, regional and municipal symphonies, jazz groups, chamber orchestras, colleges, universities and conservatories around the world.

Kristina Lewis ’09

My Journey from Behind the Piano to Center Stage: Kristina Lewis ’09

“Converse College has been one of the greatest blessings in my life. The leadership and support of the faculty, along with the great friendships I made with my colleagues, allowed for an atmosphere of the utmost inspiration.” Read more.

Changing Children’s Lives through El Sistema

Andrea Profili ’08 participated in the prestigious Abreu Fellows Program, based at the New England Conservatory, to work with the youth orchestra movement El Sistema. Read more.

Grad Schools

  • The Juilliard School
  • New England Conservatory
  • New York University
  • Boston Conservatory
  • Florida State University
  • Indiana University
  • University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music
  • Manhattan School of Music
  • Peabody Institute
  • Royal Academy of Music, London


  • Bates College, Professor
  • Valley Symphony Orchestra, Principal Flute
  • South Carolina Metropolitan Opera, Performer
  • College of Charleston, Professor
  • Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, Faculty
  • Tryon Fine Arts Center, Executive Director
  • Aspen Music Festival, Opera Performer
  • Valparaiso University, Professor
  • Metropolitan Opera Chorus, Performer
  • The Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, Lead Performer

Music Performance Stories

See COVID-19 campus updates, office hours and resources  COVID-19 Updates >