conductor at podium
Professor of Conducting Robert Spano ’84 leads a performance of the Oberlin Orchestra. Photo credit: John Bucher
Program Overview


Program Type: Graduate
  • Master of Music (MM)
Division: Conducting and Ensembles

Conducting is a graduate-level program that includes courses in choral and instrumental conducting at the beginning and advanced levels. Baton and rehearsal techniques, score preparation, and interpretation are stressed. Participating in student ensembles and helping them prepare for public performance is an essential part of the conducting curriculum.

Oberlin Orchestra in Finney Chapel
Oberlin Orchestra performance in Finney Chapel. Photo credit: John Seyfried

Oberlin Orchestra

Oberlin sponsors approximately 500 concerts on campus each year, including recitals and concerts by the more than 25 student ensembles. From jazz to contemporary guitar, classical to popular, computer-generated to acoustic, and from time-tested compositions to newer works, the college and conservatory present performances to satisfy any musical interest.

Sample Courses

  • APST 260 - Conducting I: Techniques of Conducting 2 credits
  • APST 350 - Conducting III: Instrumental 2 credits
  • APST 460 - Seminar in Choral Conducting and Literature 4 credits
  • APST 561 - Seminar in Choral Conducting and Literature 4 credits

Conducting Faculty

Conservatory faculty maintain active performance schedules while remaining accessible and committed to their students. Individual instruction is paramount to helping students develop their mechanical, technical, stylistic, psychological, and musical skills.

Explore Faculty within Conducting

“It is important that students are active in the process of creating music.”

Raphael Jiménez, Ruth Strickland Gardner Professor of Conducting
See Profile

Conducting News

A sepia image of woman with long hairand white blouse facing forward.

A Conversation with Phlox Ensemble Conductor Sophia Bass

January 30, 2020
The Phlox ensemble, an orchestra and choir promoting women and trans individuals in classical music, is an intensive winter term project that provides a space for students of traditionally underrepresented gender identities and those with a commitment to gender inclusion to engage with classical music.