3. University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre, and Dance – Ann Arbor, MI
Notable Faculty: Stephen Rush, Erik Santos, Jason Corey
The University of Michigan features state of the art sound technology equipment located in their state of the art building known as the Duderstadt Center. Music production majors are able to choose from a variety of music production degrees that are most suitable for their interests, with many of the production degrees combining secondary focuses in performance, composition, or sound engineering. The program is officially known at the college as the “Performing Arts Technology” department, and has launched many graduates into the ranks of top professions throughout the nation.
2. New York University – New York, NY
NYU actually has two departments for music production, one in the “Tisch” School known as the Clive Davis Department of Recorded Music, and one in the “Steinhardt” School that is focused on music technology. Both are excellent, but have major differences between the two.
The Clive Davis Department is designed for musicians who aspire to be “entrepreneurs” of music, according to the college’s website. Their graduates have gone on to become CEOs of record labels and have started up a number of music businesses. Their take on music production education is unique, as it is more focused on actually launching the musician into entrepreneurship, rather than just focusing on producing music.
At the Steinhardt school, we see an excellent program that is much more conventional. Their music technology department features a 7,500 square foot recording studio with state of the art equipment. Most importantly, their alumni have ascended the ranks of excellent careers, including media jobs attained at Google, professorships at various universities, and freelance post-production engineers. More alumni stories can be found here.
1. Berklee College of Music – Boston, MA
With state of the art facilities and a faculty of extraordinary record, the Berklee College of Music is, along with NYU, possibly the most prestigious and advanced college for music production in the entire world. With ten recording studios on site, students are given a virtually unlimited amount of time and space to work alongside master sound engineers as faculty. Every school year, according to the website, students are collectively given well over 10,000 hours of hands-on time in the recording studio, ensuring optimal technique and proper knowledge for the real world of music production.
Additionally, Berklee students are given the opportunity to produce electronic music and take courses on the aesthetics of production. By the time students graduate from this program, in addition to many hundreds of hours of work in the recording studios, student will have advanced ability with Pro Tools, MIDI/digital audio workstations, studio console equipment experience, and mixing techniques such as using panning, compression, and EQ.