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Program requirements

View major/minor requirements,
or browse the full catalog.

Upcoming events

Into the Woods

In fall 2013, the music and theatre programs are collaborating on Stephen Sondheim's musical Into the Woods. A call for auditions will be posted after the first of the semester.


Darrell Born
Rebecca Edwards
Phil Lawson
Brad Schrandt

Contact information

Darrell Born, chair

Music Program (M., m.)

Department overviewMusic (M., m.)Theatre arts (M., m.)

Music at Saint Martin's is a dynamic program that combines academic excellence with intensive performance opportunity. Courses integrate the study of music literature, history and theory with musical performance as a means of developing intellect, familiarity with a variety of cultures, and interpersonal relationships.

Saint Martin's is noted for small class sizes, rigorous education and a close working relationship with faculty members. Whether you aspire to a Bachelor of Arts or a minor in music, we are dedicated to your growth as a musician and a human being. We are rich with talented regionally-based faculty who are available to support your musical passion, whatever that may be. Play French horn? We've got a world-class instructor for you. Guitar? Our guitar professor is a seasoned professional who can help you develop your technical proficiency at the same time he gives you advice on being a studio musician in L.A. Your experience at Saint Martin's University is tailored to your interests and talents.

At SMU you'll learn music theory and piano proficiency while auditioning for, and performing with, regional ensembles. You will study privately with the best that the Pacific Northwest has to offer and work with such distinguished master teachers as Marni Nixon, the original Peter Pan, and Scott McCoy, author of Your Voice: An Inside View.

In addition to our core curriculum, we offer courses in opera, acting for singers and musical theatre. Our goal is to get our students on stage, performing and sharing their talent with the world. Our graduates leave Saint Martin's with the academic and performance skills necessary to succeed within the music industry, or related fields, with confidence, professionalism and poise.

Washington State teacher certifications

Saint Martin's offers three Washington State teacher certificate endorsements in music through our College of Education and Professional Psychology:

  • Choral
  • Instrumental
  • General

For additional information, please review the appropriate music endorsement form or contact the College of Education and Professional Psychology at or 360-438-4333.

Piano proficiency

As part of the major, minor and endorsement courses of study, students are required to pass a functional keyboard proficiency examination. Students with prior piano training can meet this requirement by passing the piano proficiency examination. All other students will take applied piano instruction.

Required ensembles

After they have declared a major, minor or endorsement, music students are required to participate in a major ensemble as well as applied lessons in their major instrument/voice each semester.

Those students awarded music scholarships are required to be actively involved in the appropriate large and small performance ensembles within the music department and to maintain high academic standards.

Performance opportunities

The Saint Martin's Chorale performs a series of concerts each year that range from major works to pops. All music students are required to participate in the chorale.

  • Sacred Music Concert
    The Sacred Music Concert is held in the Abbey of Saint Martin's to celebrate Saint Martin's Feast Day and All Saint's Day. All the music in this concert is sacred in nature and includes styles ranging from Renaissance to Gospel to contemporary.
  • Christmas Concert
    Our Christmas pops concert is held in the Hal and Inge Marcus Pavilion. A collaboration with the American Legion Band, this joyous concert features big band works, traditional Christmas Carols, excerpts from the Messiah and a visit from Santa himself!
  • Hope Concert
    A student showcase, the Hope Concert is a fundraising event that raises money for global and local charities, services, events, and activities. Past concerts have contributed to:
    • A water purification system built by our engineering department and send to Tanzania
    • AIDS awareness in the Sudan
    • Haven House for at-risk youth
    • Habitat for Humanity efforts for the victims of Hurricane Katrina
  • Major works concert
    Major works are the backbone of any music program. Each year we perform one major work exposing students to great composers such as:
    • Giacomo Puccini
    • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    • Gabriel Fauré
    • Johannes Brahms
    • Gioachino Rossini

SMU on-campus ensembles are a creative space where each year the players determine the flavor of the group. Led by Brad Schrandt and Phil Lawson (bands and guitar ensemble, respectively), these musical collectives maximize the talents and instrumentation available to create a singular experience for both players and audience.

  • SMUTastics! SMU's own jazz band
  • Pep band
  • Guitar ensemble

Those students interested in opera are able to participate in scene stage complete operas.

  • Marriage of Figaro, Mozart (English)
  • Die Fledermaus, Strauss (English)
  • West coast premiere of Too Many Sopranos, Penhorwood
  • Old maid and the Thief, Menotti (English)
  • Chorus and Campremario in La Traviata with Opera Pacifica
  • Scenes:
    • Cosi Fan tutti
    • The Magic Flute
    • Gon Giovanni

In addition to on campus and program-related performance groups, students may participate in community ensembles. Admittance to these groups is audition-based, giving students intimate experience with the audition process.

Master classes

The master class is an educational experience where students learn from industry professionals (i.e. "master teachers") in a concentrated group session. Instruction is given by the expert to only one or two students during the master class. The remaining students observe the instruction as a means of optimizing the learning experience for all students attending. Saint Martin's hosts one to two master classes per year.

Music at 11

Music at 11 is a monthly recital series featuring seasoned classical musicians and consummate performers. These formal events provide students with critical exposure to guest artists who demonstrate protocol and process, instrumentation, periods and genres. Students are able to apply the lessons learned from these recitals to their own monthly public studio workshop performances. Master classes with guest performers are often included.

Abbey Events

Periodically, Saint Martin’s Abbey Events sponsors recitals with aspiring world-class musicians. Through workshops and master classes conducted by these rising stars, Saint Martin’s students are exposed to, and learn from, peer musicians who demonstrate both the technical facility and emotional maturity required to achieve success.

College of Arts and Sciences