Chamber Music

At a school where the achievement of artistic excellence is the driving force of all performance programs, the Department of Chamber Music is where students are empowered to define, strive for, and expand their own conceptions of artistic excellence. The department was founded with the belief that chamber music offers today’s musicians the most vibrant avenue of creative expression along with abundant entrepreneurial career opportunities. Providing close, in-depth interactions with an exceptional faculty, the department develops the skills required to perform some of the best pieces of classical music ever written – from the traditional canon as well as new music – while stretching the boundaries of what classical music can and should be.

Working in small groups requires students to have a voice in repertoire, rehearsal planning, pedagogical goals, performance standards, and collaborative efforts. Chamber music encourages students to ask questions and take responsibility for the answers, especially when the answers might lead to a new way of achieving excellence. Collaborating closely with colleagues in multidisciplinary projects allows for new thought processes, new artistic priorities, and reinvigorated attention to the core activities of their own practices.

Led by Matt Albert (chair), a founding member of the cutting edge chamber ensemble Eighth Blackbird, the chamber music faculty comprises representatives of the School’s celebrated departments, including all instruments as well as theatre, jazz, musical theatre, dance, musicology, music education, composition, conducting, voice, and performing arts technology. In addition, an exceptional range of world class guest artists visit annually to conduct master classes and workshops. All of the resident faculty and the visiting artists excel in this genre, and they are moving it forward with their thinking, practice, and teaching.

Chamber music students work in state-of-the-art facilities, including the Earl V. Moore Building, which recently received a $29.5 million expansion and renovation, and they receive unprecedented entrepreneurial and career planning support through the school’s EXCEL program (Excellence in Entrepreneurship Career Empowerment & Leadership), poised to become the nation’s top program for funding student entrepreneurial ventures in the performing arts.

The department sponsors the Dale and Nancy Briggs Chamber Music Competition, which is exclusive to SMTD students. In addition, Ann Arbor abounds with cultural opportunities, including the University Musical Society (UMS), which presents world acclaimed artists in music, theatre, and dance, and features an exceptional chamber music series annually.

The University of Michigan is renowned for developing excellence. Combining the focus and rigor of a conservatory with the academic breadth and depth of a major public research university, an SMTD education is a transformative experience. Students receive a comprehensive program of instruction, performance, and pedagogy, along with academic opportunities made possible through the University’s vast spectrum of top-rated programs. The School fosters innovation, values diversity and inclusion, and graduates fully-engaged citizens who are eager to make a difference in their field and community.

Participating in chamber music during my time here has allowed me to work with an incredible number of faculty members that I would not have worked with otherwise; I’ve learned important things from each and every one of them, both as a chamber musician and a soloist.

Hanna Rumora (BM '18, cello)


Academics & Opportunities

Explore the academic options and resources offered through the Department of Chamber Music.


More Chamber Music events


The Akropolis Reed Quintet was founded in 2009 at the University of Michigan and is the first ever ensemble of its makeup to win a Fischoff Gold Medal (2014), Grand Prize at the Plowman and MTNA national competitions, and 6 national chamber music prizes in total.

Here are just a few of our celebrated alumni:

Donald Sinta Saxophone Quartet DAN GRASER (DMA, MM), JOE GIRARD (MM, BM), ZACH STERN (MM, BM, saxophone and music education), DANNY HAWTHORNE-FOSS (MM, BM ’11) 2018 Fischoff Competition Gold Medal, Senior Winds

Vanguard Reed Quintet SAGAR ANUPINDI (BM ’18,oboe), MICKAYLA CHAPMAN (MM ’18, clarinet and chamber music), SEAN MEYERS (MM, saxophone), DANNY MUI (SP, bass clarinet), JOE SWIFT  (MM, bassoon and chamber music) 2018 Fischoff Competition Silver Medal, Senior Winds
PRISM Saxophone Quartet
Rhyta Musik

Ways To Connect


734.764.0593 (SMTD Admissions)
734.763.5461 (Events Line)
734.764.2538 (SMTD/UMS Ticket Office)


Matt Albert (Chair) or


Department of Chamber Music
Earl V. Moore Building
1100 Baits Drive
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2075