Music Major Overview

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The Music major at Bluefield College will receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.

The Music major may elect a concentration in Applied Music (vocal or piano, pedagogy), Church Music, General Music, or General Music with Teacher Licensure.

Attention Music and Non-Music Majors!

The Department of Music at Bluefield College offers a broad range of courses and activities, individualized instruction in a unique mentoring environment, an outstanding and highly qualified faculty, scholarships and financial aid, performance opportunities on and off campus, and the Bluefield College Performing Arts Series to Music and Non-Music majors alike. A minor in Music is also available. No minor is required with a Music major, but students may elect to pursue a minor if they so desire.

Click the Academic Catalog image to view course descriptions for the Music major.

Internships

All students with a concentration in Church Music are required to complete an internship. Church Music interns are partnered with a Minister of Music/Worship Pastor, who supervises their work in the music ministry of the host church. All Music Education students complete a semester of student teaching in lieu of an internship requirement.

Common Sites for Internships

Church Music internships are hosted by larger churches in the region during the summer and by local churches in the Bluefield area during the academic year. Student teaching placement occurs each semester through relationships with the school systems of Tazewell County, Virginia, and Mercer County, West Virginia.

Major Outcomes

Music Majors are globally aware and equipped through the development of creative thinking and problem solving strategies essential for artistic expression. Additionally, the performance of music from many cultures and international touring opportunities helps our students to genuinely appreciate a wide variety of cultural expressions.

Career Opportunities

  • Accompanist
  • Conductor
  • Music Educator
  • Private Studio Teacher
  • Solo Artist
  • Worship Leader

Positions Held by Alumni

  • Executive Director of the American Choral Directors Association
  • Director of Music, Forest Road United Methodist Church
  • Elementary Music Teacher, Hayes, Virginia
  • Graduate Writing Instructor, Liberty University
  • Director of Music, Richlands United Methodist Church
  • Choir Director, Graham High School
  • Band Director, Bluefield High School
  • Band Director, Graham High School
  • Band Director, Patrick County High School

Performing Ensembles

Bluefield College students have the opportunity to participate in eight different performing ensembles. All ensembles are open to both Music and non-Music majors and satisfy the requirements of the Department of Music's scholarships.

Concert Band

A non-auditioned ensemble that performs for on-campus and community events. It is open to instrumentalists with high school band or equivalent experience. The Concert Band is directed by Dr. Charles Priest, Assistant Professor of Music.

Masterworks Chorale

A choir of Bluefield College students, faculty and staff, and community members, performing large-scale classical works and selections from the sacred and secular choral repertoire. Recent concerts have included Vivaldi’s Gloria with the Bluefield College Orchestra, Benjamin Britten’s A Ceremony of Carols, and portions of Handel’s Messiah. The choir rehearses Mondays from 7:00-9:00 p.m. in Shott Hall. No audition is required for membership. Directed by Dr. John Moir, Assistant Professor of Music.

Opera Theatre Ensemble

Opera Theatre Ensemble provides singers with the opportunity to perform solos, scenes, and ensembles from operatic literature, while bringing together the skills of singing, acting, and movement. Typically offered in alternate years, the course is open to students and community members by audition. Directed by Dr. John Moir, Assistant Professor of Music.

Praise Singers

An auditioned vocal group and band performing Contemporary Christian, Praise, and Worship music throughout the region. Praise Singers serves regularly in leading campus worship. Directed by Dr. Charles Priest, Associate Professor of Music.

Stadium Band

An auditioned instrumental ensemble whose primary purpose is to perform for various Bluefield College athletic events. Directed by Dr. Charles Priest, Assistant Professor of Music.

Variations

A select, auditioned chorus of 20-28 members that performs a wide variety of challenging choral literature. Variations tours annually throughout the region, singing at churches, conferences, and public and private schools. Variations has performed in New York at Carnegie Hall and at the Lincoln Center, and has toured internationally in Austria, Italy, and the Czech Republic. Directed by Dr. John Moir, Assistant Professor of Music.


The Music Department at Bluefield College not only improved my performance skills, but added a depth of knowledge and understanding to how music is created. With the varied number of ensembles, I was able to perform in a wide variety of genres and perform works from the great composers throughout history. With the skills I obtained at BC, the doors for my musical career are wide open.

Nicholas Hinkle, Princeton, WV, Class of 2016