The Setnor School of Music offers the highest level of musical development within a major research university and supportive student body.


We encourage the widest possible range of creative options for our students, recognizing that the Western classical tradition continues to grow and expand and that it is only one in a world of myriad others.


Music ensembles

Classical, jazz, funk, and rock


Music department founded at Syracuse


Free performances in Setnor Auditorium

Students, faculty, and guest artists

Why Choose Setnor?

Music has thrived at Syracuse University since 1877, when the Department of Music was founded and Syracuse became the first university in the United States to grant a degree in music and require four years’ study in both music and theory.

What makes the Setnor School a great place for you to study music?

  • Our students: they are curious, self-motivated, and driven.
  • Our faculty: they are practicing professionals and teachers with whom you can establish close, supportive relationships.
  • Our programs: many offer students the opportunity to choose a course of study on their instrument or voice in either classical or jazz and commercial music.
  • Our performing ensembles: we offer instrumental and choral ensembles of all sizes and musical styles.
  • Our visiting artists and speakers: our lively and diverse schedule includes musicians as well as top music industry professionals.
  • Our community: Setnor students and faculty form a close-knit group and love to collaborate with and challenge each other.
  • Our University: unlimited opportunities for musical growth and professional development abound within the major setting of Syracuse University.

Now known as the Rose, Jules R., and Stanford S. Setnor School of Music, the school continues this proud tradition by offering professional-level training through challenging and relevant degree programs that allow talented musicians and future music industry leaders to excel both collectively and as individuals.

We believe all our areas of emphasis are interdependent and integral to the success of the school, the health of the profession, and the evolution of culture, and we therefore strive for the highest standards in every one of these degree programs.

We recognize that inherent in these endeavors is a responsibility to the campus community, the community beyond campus borders, and our culture as a whole. Hence, we are committed to serving a larger public through outreach and education, working to create an inclusive environment in which all can develop their gifts.

Undergraduate Majors

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Graduate Degree Programs

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Setnor School of Music Mission Statement

To offer opportunities for the highest level of professional musical development within the context of a broad, humanistic education.

To encourage and facilitate the broadest possible range of creative options for students and faculty, recognizing that the Western classical tradition continues to grow and expand, and that it is only one in a world of myriad others.

To uphold the School’s role and responsibilities as a citizen of the community, and of the larger culture, by serving the community through outreach and education, and by creating and maintaining an inclusive environment in which all can pursue musical interests and develop their gifts.

To offer substantive musical opportunities for non-music majors from all corners of the University.


The Setnor School of Music is an accredited charter institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM). Accredited programs at Setnor include music (B.S.); composition (B.M., M.M.); conducting (M.M.); music education (B.M., M.M., M.S.); music industry (B.M.); performance (B.M., M.M.); sound recording technology (B.M.); and voice pedagogy (M.M.).

Recent Setnor School of Music News

  • Anne Laver

    Faculty News

    Anne Laver, assistant professor of applied music and performance (organ) in the Setnor School of Music, published the article “Blending the Popular and the Profound: Organ Concerts at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition.” in the Journal of the Society for American Music 16, no. 2. The article presents an analysis...

  • William Knuth

    Faculty News

    William Knuth, assistant professor of applied music and performance (violin and viola) in the Setnor School of Music, was invited to perform this summer as part of the AIMS Festival Orchestra in Graz, Austria, as well as give chamber music performances throughout Graz and Southern Austria.

  • Natalie Draper portrait.

    Faculty News

    Natalie Draper, assistant professor of composition, theory, and history in the Setnor School of Music, recently had her choral setting of Edgar Allan Poe's "The Bells" premiered by Beth Willer and Peabody's NEXT Ensemble as part of their commissioning initiative to celebrate 150 years of composition at the Peabody...

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