Designed for students seeking the highest degree in the field, the DMA is a rigorous three-year course of study culminating in two solo recitals, a lecture-recital, a collaborative recital, and a doctoral document.
The doctoral degree is awarded on the basis of demonstrated competence, not on the basis of a specified number of credit hours. Completion of the program normally requires six terms of full-time study beyond the master’s degree. Students are expected to attain candidacy effective at the beginning of the sixth term.
Course elections must include the following:
- Music Performance 891: Directed Performance (2-6 hrs), elected each term in residence as a pre-candidate
- Music Performance 995: Dissertation/Candidate (8 hrs), elected each term in residence as a candidate, or at least one term.
- Early Music 587: Harpsichord Pedagogy
- Early Music 588: Harpsichord Maintenance
- Early Music 783: Advanced Continuo and Partimento
In addition, students elect at least one course from the following:
- Early Music 781: Seminar in Performance Problems
- Early Music 782: Topics in Historical Performance
- Early Music 550 Basso Continuo
- Early Music 551 Basso Continuo II
Early Music Ensemble
Four terms of Early Music Ensemble
Musicology & Music Theory
- Musicology 503: Bibliography of Music (3 hrs), elected in the first term of enrollment as a pre-candidate
- A minimum of fifteen hours of graduate work in music theory and musicology, or at least five courses totaling a minimum of twelve hours. At least one of the musicology courses must be at the 600-level.
Additional course work as prescribed by the student’s advisor.
At least one academic year of full-time residence is required.
Minimum Repertoire Requirements to Receive the Degree
Five transcriptions of Lully
Two preludes and fugues from the Well-Tempered Clavier, Book One
Two preludes and fugues from the Well-Tempered Clavier, Book Two
Two Partitas, not including BWV 825
Two French Suites
One English Suite
Brandenburg Concerto #5 and one other solo keyboard concerto
One sonata after Reincken and one concerto after Vivaldi
Three Pavanes and Galliards
Five other works of varying genre
One ordre from each livre
Four preludes from L’Art de toucher le clavecin
Two suites and four unmeasured preludes
Four toccatas, four contrapuntal works, one set of variations
Two suites, two toccatas, two contrapuntal works
E.J. de la Guerre
Two suites or sets
Four works by composers other than Byrd
17th Century Italian
Six works by composers other than Frescobaldi
18th Century French
Three suites or sets by Duphly, Forqueray, or Royer
Six works including at least three works by women composers
Transcriptions of two movements from J.S. Bach’s Solo Cello Suites and
two dances from Purcell’s dramatic works
Two solo sonatas and two trio sonatas
Two Sonatas for Violin and Obbligato Harpsichord
Two Sonatas for Flute and Obbligato Harpsichord
One Sonatas for Viola da Gamba and Obbligato Harpsichord
Three Sacred Cantatas (organ or harpsichord)
Two solo violin sonatas and two trio sonatas
Two instrumental chamber works
One Leçon de Tenebrae
E.J. de la Guerre
One instrumental and one vocal work
Two vocal works and two instrumental works
Three choral works
Dido and Aeneas
One set from the Pièces de clavecin en concert
J.H. Schmelzer/H.I.F Biber
Two Paris Quartets
Gloria, RV 589
17th Century Italian
Four instrumental and four vocal works, including Castello and Fontana
17th Century French
Four vocal works
Four works, including two of women composers
Substitutions, including commissions of new work, may be made in any category with the approval of the advisor.
Requirements for Candidacy
A basic reading knowledge of two foreign languages selected from French, German, Italian, or Spanish.
Every doctoral student in the School of Music, Theatre and Dance must satisfy the pedagogy requirement during the first two terms of enrollment. A list of courses that satisfy this requirement may be found in the Handbook for Rackham Students in Music, Dance, or Theatre.
Preliminary Examinations Prior to Candidacy
- Music History General Preliminary Examination (or the coursework alternative)
- Music Theory General Preliminary Examination
- Performance Preliminary Examination in the field of specialization
- Comprehensive Oral Preliminary Examination
The preliminary examinations required for admission to candidacy are taken after the student has satisfied the language, residence, and pedagogy requirements; has completed most of the course work; and is prepared to concentrate his or her efforts on the dissertation recitals. At least two courses in musicology, including MHM 503, must be completed prior to taking the preliminary examination in that field, and at least two courses in music theory must be completed prior to taking the preliminary examination in theory. During the examination in performance the applicant must satisfy a jury that he or she has achieved the requisite musical competence to undertake the preparation of the public programs to be presented in lieu of a written dissertation.
Candidacy will be conferred upon completion of these requirements and examinations. A dissertation committee must have been appointed by the time candidacy is achieved.
- One lecture-recital: the lecture-recital may be presented in the forum of the Early Music Ensemble, in the Doctoral Seminar, or in public. It will be comprised of music studied in the Ensemble or Seminar, or types of music not included in the solo recitals. The lecture-recital may be given as a pre-candidate or as a candidate.
- One collaborative recital: The collaborative recital may be given as a pre-candidate or as a candidate and must include vocal and instrumental music. Leading a larger ensemble from the keyboard for a portion of the recital is recommended.
- Two solo recitals after reaching candidacy: repertoire will be selected to fulfill the needs and interests of the student.
- Written document: A scholarly essay or research paper of approximately 5,000 words suitable for publication. Topics could include a source or genre study, a critical edition, a discussion of a particular problem in harpsichord performance or interpretation, or an interdisciplinary analysis of a work or group of works.
An abstract listing the music performed and, if space permits, providing program notes and commentary is required.
Final Oral Examination
A final oral examination concerned primarily with the field of specialization will be conducted by the dissertation committee after all of the other requirements have been completed.
For requirement details, please see the Degree Requirements and Term-by-Term Layout for Current Students.
Nearly all DMA students receive full-tuition fellowships. Most also receive health benefits and a stipend attached to a Graduate Student Assistantship, which can vary in proportion to the appointment fraction and the duties associated with it. In addition to the funding packages offered by the SMTD, Rackham students are also eligible to apply for a wide range of fellowships to fund research, travel, and performance.
How To Apply
Applicants to the Doctor of Musical Arts in Performance: Harpsichord must have completed a master’s of music degree in harpsichord or equivalent to be eligible for admission.
Repertoire Requirements for Admission
- J. S. Bach: two suites from the French Suites, English Suites, or Partitas
- J. S. Bach: two other major works (toccatas, solo concerti, etc.)
- J. S. Bach: six preludes and fugues from the Well-Tempered Clavier
- D. Scarlatti: six sonatas
- French music: one seventeenth-century suite and one eighteenth-century suite
- Northern seventeenth-century school (Byrd, Sweelinck, etc.): two works (a pavan-and-galliard pair, a fantasia, a variation set, etc.)
- Ensemble works with obbligato (not basso continuo) right hand: two works by J. S. Bach (e.g. BWV 1014-19, 1027-30) or Rameau (Pieces de clavecin en concerts)
Other works may be substituted with the approval of Professor Joseph Gascho.
- Apply to U-M via the Rackham Graduate School Application by December 1
- Submit an SMTD Artistic Profile by December 1
- Have all supplemental materials sent to the Rackham Graduate School
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