Welcome to Music at Ave Maria University! Our department features a major and a minor in music, as well as opportunities for students of any major to join us in making music. We are pleased to offer music scholarships for music majors and a special choral scholarship for non-majors. We cordially invite you to complete your audition with us.

This year our students will be inspired and challenged by their work in many solo, ensemble, and scholarly contexts. Let your voice be heard in the AMU Choir, Opera-Music Theater Workshop, or the Gregorian Chant scholæ! Opportunities for individual growth include master classes and recital performances, and interaction with music scholars and active professionals in the field. Members of our Senior class will be preparing their Senior recitals, as well as preparing to attend graduate schools or to assume leadership positions in communities, churches, and schools. It is an exciting time to be a part of music at AMU!

Please use the side navigation bar to find important information about the next steps toward joining us a student musician. We would be very happy to meet you!

Required Courses

MUSC 104 Music Theory I

MUSC 105 Music Theory II

MUSC 106 Aural Skills I

MUSC 107 Aural Skills II

MUSC 108 Class Piano I

MUSC 109 Class Piano II

MUSC 111-114 Applied Voice, Organ, Piano, or Composition (4 credits required)

Any music elective (2 credits required)


    • MUSC 101M/MUSC 101W
    • MUSC 200 Ave Maria University Concert Choir
    • MUSC 400 Vocal Pedagogy
    • MUSC 401 Music Technology
    • MUSC 410 Chamber Choir
    • MUSC 430 Conducting I
    • MUSC 431 Conducting II

Alexandra Carlson, D.M.A.

Adjunct Professor of Music – Piano

Education:D.M.A., Chamber Ensemble, State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory, M.Mus., Piano Performance,
State Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory

Taylor Ferranti, D.M.A.

Visiting Associate Professor of Music

Education: D. Mus., Voice Performance/Voice Science, Louisiana State University; M. Mus., Voice Performance, Boston Conservatory; B. Mus., Voice Performance, Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam
Phone: (239) 280-1592
Fax: (239) 280-1637

Brice Gerlach, Ph. D.

Adjunct Professor of Music – Organ

Education: Ph.D., Choral Conducting, Indiana University, M. Mus., Organ Performance, Indiana University, B. Mus., Organ Performance, Eastman School of Music
Fax: (239) 280-1637

Seunghee Lee, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Music

Education: Ph.D., M.F.A., Music Composition and Theory, Brandeis University
M.M., Music Composition, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
B.M., Music Composition, Ewha Womans University, Seoul, Korea
Office: Canizaro Library 252
Phone: (238) 280-1588
Fax: (239) 280-1637

Are there scholarship opportunities?

Yes! Ave Maria University offers a variety of scholarship opportunities, including a very competitive Academic Scholarship based on GPA and standardized test scores, as well as merit-based Music Major Scholarships.  AMU now offers a new Choral Scholarship as well, which is available to any qualified student (non-music majors) in connection to performance in an AMU choral ensemble.

How can students not majoring in music participate in music at AMU?

The music department offers several courses that are open to non-music students, including: choral ensembles; chamber music, which regularly includes stringed and other instruments; private lessons (piano, organ, or voice); and music theory and musicianship.   Qualified student instrumentalists frequently perform with the University choir at liturgical events on campus.  The music minor is a further option for students sufficiently proficient in piano, organ, or voice.  The Choral Scholarship is available to qualified students regardless of major, in connection to performance in an AMU choral ensemble.

What is the music minor?

The minor in music is a good option for students who love music and wish to continue to study it, but intend to major in another area.  The coursework consists of the first part of the major coursework:  first-year music theory and musicianship, music history, lessons, and ensemble.  All other music coursework is also open to minors (with prerequisites).   Most students spread the music minor coursework across three years or four years as they complete their major, but it can sometimes be completed in two years.  The credits required to complete the music minor fit within the usual 128 credits required for a degree at AMU.

Does the music department participate in liturgical musical activities?

Yes! The cultivation liturgical music tradition of the Church is an institutional commitment for the department of music at AMU.  We participate in Masses at the Ave Maria Oratory, and we frequently participate in liturgies at various parishes in the region.

What instruments are available for student practice, instruction, and performance?

Yamaha G3

Yamaha C7

Steinway Model A

Mason & Hamlin Grand

Marshall & Ogletree Organ, Opus 5 (4 manuals)

Several smaller pianos and organs for practice

Choral Scholarships

The Department of Music has an active choral program that is becoming recognized throughout Southwest Florida for its dynamic performances. We are pleased to offer Choral Scholarships to incoming students who are not majoring in music.  The scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate strong vocal and sight reading skills, and have earned a minimum ACT score of 23 or SAT equivalent.  Students holding a choral scholarship maintain membership in an AMU mixed choral ensemble each semester.

Choral scholarships are renewable for up to four years, and are made in addition to other institutional scholarships a student may receive. Auditions for the Choral Scholarship are available on-campus only.  Please refer to the other Auditions tabs see the Choral Scholarship Auditions page for information on how to audition.

Music Major Scholarships

The Department of Music is pleased to offer competitive Music Major Scholarships to incoming students majoring in music.  Awards are made to those students who qualify via their audition performance and sight reading ability.  All music major auditions completed before April 30 are considered for the Music Major Scholarship. Priority consideration is given to on-campus auditions.

Music Major scholarship awards are renewable for up to four years, and are made in addition to any other institutional scholarship awards a student may receive.  Please see the Music Auditions and Major and Minor Auditions pages for more information. Please refer to the other Auditions tabs for information on how to audition.

General Audition Requirements for the Degree Program in Music

The Department of Music accepts students in piano, voice, and organ.  Admission to the music degree program is dependent upon the successful completion of:

  • An audition performance in piano, voice, or organ
  • Diagnostic evaluations in sight reading
  • An interview with Music faculty

Successful auditions will demonstrate technical and musical maturity, and the potential for advanced study in music.

Auditions may be performed on-site during a campus visit or recorded and submitted online via an emailed YouTube video. On-site auditions are highly recommended. Campus visits for auditions should be scheduled through the Admissions Office. If a recorded audition is the only means by which a candidate can complete an audition, preference is given to video recordings.

Eligibility to Audition

Piano:  At least four years of piano lessons are required to be eligible to audition, with at least one year immediately prior to the audition.

Voice: At least one year of lessons prior to the audition is required for eligibility.

Organ: At least one year of lessons prior to the audition, along with sufficient background on the piano, is required for eligibility.  Additional years of lessons on the organ, rather than piano background, may also satisfy the eligibility requirement.

All auditioners should be seniors in high school, or otherwise prepared to enter the university in the fall following the audition.  Exceptions to eligibility requirements are made only with the permission of the Department of Music.

Audition Repertoire Requirements

All audition pieces must be from the classical repertoire.  Broadway and popular styles are not acceptable. Students may perform 1 – 3 works, which should show contrast in musical style and tempo.

  • Vocalists must perform from memory. An accompanist is provided for vocal auditions. PDFs of accompanist parts must be emailed to the departmental assistant at least one week prior to audition.
  • Pianists are very strongly encouraged to perform from memory.
  • Organists need not perform from memory.
Audition Application
Apartment/Unit Number

Please list the title and composer for the work(s) you will perform in your audition


Admission to the music minor is by audition only.  Auditions for prospective music minors normally take place just prior to the start of the semester in which the student intends to begin the coursework for the minor, though students may audition at an earlier date.  Music minor auditions follow the same requirements and process as auditions for the major.

Incoming students not intending to major in music may complete an audition for a Choral Scholarship during a campus visit.  Music Minors are also eligible for the Choral Scholarship. Auditioners should have a strong vocal or choral background and good sight reading skills, and must earn a minimum ACT score of 23, or SAT equivalent.  To schedule a choral scholarship audition, please complete the Audition Application form, and the Campus Visit form.

The audition consists of:

  • Vocalises (we will demonstrate what to do.)
  • Performing a prepared piece. This piece can be anything you choose: a solo piece, your part of a choral work you have studied, etc.
  • Sight reading
Learn more about the Music Department and the Music MajorView the Academic Catalogue