Northwestern University Bienen School of Music

Northwestern University has always looked ahead toward the future of music. Today young musicians face an interconnected market where success requires not only exceptional musical skills but also new ways of distributing art and sharing creativity worldwide.

For decades the Bienen School has offered dual degree programs for undergraduates whose intellectual curiosity in diverse areas—from science and technology to marketing and cultural studies—matches their passion for music. In addition, our graduate programs specialize in training highly skilled performers and scholars to broaden their entrepreneurial mindset and challenge new audiences.

Visit our campus, experience our city, and discover our passion for musical artistry.

The Bienen School of Music has an enrollment of more than 600 undergraduate and graduate students and a world-renowned faculty of 120, including members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and other major ensembles. Students pursue degrees in performance and music studies as well as dual degrees across the University, combining music with liberal arts, communication, education and social policy, engineering, or journalism. Alumni of the Bienen School of Music hold positions as performers, administrators, and educators in America’s leading arts and educational institutions.

Chicago is one of the world’s leading musical cities—home to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Lyric Opera of Chicago, more than 100 regional orchestras, and countless music festivals, concert venues, and jazz clubs. Just north of Chicago, the Bienen School of Music offers more than 400 concerts each year by renowned guest artists and the school’s 16 large ensembles—including orchestras, choruses, and wind and jazz ensembles. Northwestern’s Institute for New Music provides an intellectual and performance hub for creating and exploring all forms of today’s music.

Stream online videos and browse the entire video collection of concerts, master classes, and recitals through the Davee Online Media Library at

A life devoted to music can follow many different paths — performer, scholar, teacher, arts administrator, critic. Each requires talent, dedication, and commitment as well as a belief in the importance and necessity of music in today’s challenging world.

Dr. Toni-Marie Montgomery,
Dean of the Bienen School of Music

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