Master of Arts in Teaching in Music (Los Angeles)


Program Description

Longy offers the first, one-year accredited degree program in the world inspired by El Sistema, the Venezuelan program that is changing the lives of children in underserved communities through intensive music instruction.

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program was developed with the LA Phil to establish a hands-on approach to learning. Now in partnership with the Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA) and Street Symphony, you will “learn by doing” by working in the surrounding underserved neighborhoods of the Rampart District of Los Angeles. Within weeks you will gain new skills by being mentored in community music and El Sistema-inspired programs, by teaching in urban public schools throughout Southern California, and by supporting communities who experience homelessness such as Skid Row.

The MAT in Music offers a unique and powerful graduate study in performance, music pedagogy, and social justice, as well as access to MAT faculty, including prominent Los Angeles musicians and leading scholars in music and education. We are looking for inspired artists from all musical backgrounds—classical, pop, world, folk, jazz, instrumental, vocal, conducting, and more.

With an intimate class size of 12-15, Longy offers a personal learning environment that encourages innovation and allows for more individualized attention. MAT graduates are awarded a California single-subject K-12 teaching credential in music.

Major Areas

  • Brass
  • Composition
  • Conducting
  • Jazz/World/Folk
  • Percussion
  • Piano
  • Strings
  • Vocal Performance
  • Woodwinds.

Level: Graduate (conservatory diploma or bachelor’s degree required).
Normal Program Length and Credits: 1 year (July-June), 63 credits required for graduation.

Application Requirements

  • Complete the Online Application.
  • Submit a recorded audition (please see Audition Repertoire Requirements below).
  • Submit Required Supplemental Materials.
  • Resume, personal statement, 2 letters of recommendation (submitted through the online application).
  • Transcripts/academic records* (transcripts must be in English).
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores* (non-native English speakers only).

All applicants must have received a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution with a major in music or music education. We will also consider applicants who have received a bachelor’s degree in another discipline with a concentration in music. Students must have completed core courses in music theory and music history prior to the MAT.

Audition Requirements and Repertoire

Video recording required

We do not expect applicants to submit a studio-quality recording; we are listening for the quality of musicianship and performance, not the quality of the recording itself. Video is preferred. Please upload all video and sound recordings directly to the online application. Do not mail scores, DVDs, and/or CDs.

Instrumentalists, Vocalists, Conductors, and Composers, submit at least two audition videos:

  • Submit one video recording on your primary instrument or voice.
  • Submit one of the following: contrasting work on your primary instrument, a work on your secondary instrument, conducting video, or composition portfolio.

Jazz/World/Folk Musicians submit at least two audition videos:

  • Two prepared and contrasting pieces of your choice
  • MAT welcomes applicants who are trained in non-classical music of all types. The suggested repertory includes the following:
    • a tune from a well-known artist or band of any style
    • a tune from the standard jazz repertory with your own improvisation
    • a composition from the instrumental or vocal repertory of your chosen genre. Only one of the two may include your own original composition

Your audition portfolio may include other media on secondary instruments and/or examples of your teaching background.  We want to learn more about you as an artist and educator.

Course Highlights

Writing and Thinking: MAT students gather for a weeklong intensive introductory course modeled after Bard’s signature Writing and Thinking workshop. Here they examine core beliefs and assumptions about music and education and begin to build the sense of community integral to the MAT.

Core Courses: MAT students are required to take four graduate-level courses in music and four graduate-level courses in education. These courses are thematically designed to answer essential questions about teaching and learning and are framed by practice-based research.

Teaching Laboratory: MAT students, joined by resident faculty and outside guests, convene for weekly sessions that examine the practical applications of concepts and ideas they encounter in their core courses.

Teaching Practicum: As teaching interns, MAT students design and teach classes, assess student understanding, and modify practices to adapt to students’ needs. MAT students teach in school classrooms, community music centers, and El Sistema-inspired nucleos.

Private Lessons: Students enrolled in the MAT take private lessons on their major instrument, voice, composition, or conducting with members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and other Los Angeles-based professional musicians.

Research Projects: MAT students work closely with faculty mentors to prepare two final research projects: a performance-based presentation, as well as a scholarly inquiry, focused on teaching and learning in the classroom.

Last updated Sep 2020

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About the School

The world needs music now more than ever. At Longy, we prepare students to become exceptional musicians who can engage new audiences inside and outside the concert hall, who can teach anyone, anywhere ... Read More

The world needs music now more than ever. At Longy, we prepare students to become exceptional musicians who can engage new audiences inside and outside the concert hall, who can teach anyone, anywhere, and who can use their artistry to change lives in communities around the world. Join us, and become the musician the world needs you to be. Read less