Study Abroad Options for Music Majors

IES Vienna
IES Milan
IES Amsterdam
City University

IES Vienna

IES Vienna offers a Music program specially designed for Music Performance majors and other talented instrumentalists and vocalists.  The program consists of a selection of offerings in Music History, Music Theory, and Performance Studies and Language courses in English and German (for those qualified).  The Music History and Music Theory courses are open to all students (usually Music majors) with the appropriate prerequisites; Performance studies are available only to those students admitted to the Music Performance Workshop.

The Music Performance Workshop is designed to offer instrumentalists and vocalists the opportunity to expand their repertoire and enhance their performance skills.  To be admitted to the workshop, students must submit a workshop application with their IES application form and have an on-site interview and audition.  Refer to for a workshop application.  STudents admitted to the Music Performance Workshop are also eligible to receive private instruction.  IES subsidizes such instruction up to 400 Euro per semester.  Students are also encouraged to audition for orchestral and choral groups.

In addition to courses at IES, music students with an adequate command of German may enroll at the Universitt fr Musik und darstellende Kunst to take lecture courses and seminars for IES credit.

Students should bring their own musical instrument to Vienna, if feasible, since instrument rental can be expensive.  The IES Center has a limited number of lockers on the premises for instrument storage.

The IES Center offers five practice rooms at the Palais Corbelli plus its own off-campus practice facilities, which consist of six practice rooms--each equipped with a  piano, bench, chair, mirror, and stand as well as a separate lounge.  The practice facilities are a ten-minute subway ride from the IES Center and are open weekdays from 8:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m.

IES Milan

IES Milan provides a full range of music opportunities for instrumentalists, vocalists, composers, and music performance majors.  In addition to offering several music courses each semester, IES works closely with the Accademia Internazionale della Musica (the largest private music school in Italy), which includes schools in jazz, choral, classical, contemporary, and early music, to facilitate students' music enrollment options and ensemble work.  Using a highly customized approach, the IES Milan Director, an accomplished musicologist and active composer, works closely with students to tailor a program that meets their musical needs and interests.  Students may choose to take instruction and performance at the Accademia (instruments, voice, theory, composition, orchestra, ensembles--see, which provides a more integrated experience since they study alongside Italian and international students, or they may request private instruction.  Students with no prior Italian may enroll in technique and performance classes whereas an advanced level of Italian is required for theory and history classes at the Accademia.  Private non-performance music classes may be arranged in Italian or English.

Based on the number of contact hours, students earn two- to three-credits for private lessons, and ensemble work.  Music students typically take from one to three music courses each term, combining private lessons with theory courses at the Accademia and IES.  Limited practice space is available at the IES Center, and housing is arranged so that piano and voice students can practice at home, as is common for Italian music students.

Although all applicants will be automatically admitted, in order to earn placement at an appropriate level, music students must submit a music application form and audition tape, CD, or video several months prior to the program start date.  Final arrangements are made during orientation week based on meetings between the student and IES Director.

IES Amsterdam

At the largest and most diverse conservatory in the Netherlands, the Amsterdam School of Music (ASM) takes full advantage of Amsterdam's established reputation in music, both classical and contemporary.  The school is dedicated to upholding the highest standards of teaching, performing, and creating music.  It aims to provide knowledge, insight and skills, and to train students to become versatile musicians at the highest level in every sphere of professional musicianship.  Students who study at ASM should be strong Performance, Composition, or Theory majors with the motivation and intention to become professional musicians or music scholars.

Situated next door to the famous Concertgebouw, one of the world's acoustically finest concert halls, ASM is located in the beautiful museum district.  At the heart of the Netherlands' cultural and musical tradition, the school gives students access to an impressive breadth of classical, jazz, and popular music.

A member of the Amsterdam School of the Arts, ASM was originally established as the Sweelinck Conservatory in 1884.  Today, most instruction is held at the former Sweelinck Conservatory, a vibrant institution with nearly 1,000 students studying Classical and Jazz Music.  Because ASM welcomes a substantial number of international students, the vast majority of the courses are taught in English. 

In close consultation with advisors, students will establish a highly-individualized, full-time (15 credit hours) course of study within the concentration of Jazz or Classical music.  Each combines practical and theoretical aspects of music study with various electives and optional courses.  The mandatory practical component of study is composed of a combination of one-on-one and small group instruction.  This course of study includes highly-individualized instruction with a tutor, participation in an extensive chamber music and ensemble program, and culminates in final performances.  The theoretical component is aimed at developing musical imagination and perception.  Core subjects include offerings in Ear Training (Aural Skills courses), Analysis, Harmony, and Counterpoint.

Course Offerings:

Voice, String Instruments, Brass Instruments, Woodwind Instruments, Piano and Other Keyboard Instruments, Percussion, Historical Instruments, Composition, Conducting, or Church Music

Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Bass Trombone, Voice, Piano, Double Bass, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drums; Composition/Arranging, or Music Theory

Elective Courses:
The elective/optional component includes additional Performance and Theory options.  Within both of the Classical and Jazz departments, elective courses are available in:

  • Analysis
  • Arranging
  • Chamber Music
  • Composition
  • Conducting
  • Continuo Playing and Directing Ensembles
  • Counterpoint
  • Drama
  • Ear Training
  • Harmonic Analysis of the Piano
  • Harmony
  • Music and Social History (History of Western Music)
  • Orchestra or Ensemble Projects (big band, baroque ensemble, jazz formations, gamelan fusion groups)
  • Piano

City University

The Department of Music at City University provides music majors with the opportunity to study music in a friendly and informal atmosphere, and offers access to excellent facilities. The courses available bring together the areas of Western and non-Western music and include modules in applied areas such as music therapy. Students have the opportunity to take part in performance activities through joining one of City’s ensembles. The Department’s course options alternate each year so not all courses will be available every year.

The following course list is intended as a broad guide to modules normally available to study abroad students:                        

  • Investigating Western Music                   
  • Music, Sound and Technology
  • Music, Sound and Language of New Media
  • Latin-American Music Studies
  • Digital Sound
  • New Music Languages
  • African-American Music
  • Indonesian Music
  • Jewish Music
  • Music Business
  • Music Therapy
  • Sonic Communication
  • Sound Synthesis
  • The Impact of Wagner
  • Fact & Fiction: Representations of Composers
  • Music Aesthetics & the Enlightenment
  • Music Traditions of the Middle East
  • Mozart

Ensemble Performance:

  • African Drumming
  • Balinese Gamelan
  • Big Band
  • Chamber Choir
  • Javanese Gamelan
  • Jazz Workshop
  • Symphony Orchestra