Voice studies at VCU Music focus on developing the highest possible level of performance while providing the essential context of a well-rounded music education.

Degree programs and curriculum

Students who complete the music curriculum in voice can receive a Bachelor of Music with a concentration in performance and an emphasis in voice, a Bachelor of Music with a concentration in Music Education and a choral emphasis, or a Bachelor of Arts in Music.

Once accepted into one of the programs, all voice students participate in weekly master classes, which serve as informal performance laboratories. Music majors also attend weekly convocations that offer students an opportunity to perform in a concert setting. In addition to the core curriculum, vocal performance majors take additional courses in song literature, voice pedagogy, opera theater, lyric diction and foreign language. Choral music education majors study lyric diction and the music education curriculum, which includes choral methods and rehearsal techniques. Music education majors may also take opera theater and additional vocal electives as time permits.


The success of our program is demonstrated by the consistently strong showing of our students and alumni in major regional and national competitions, as well as the number of VCU graduates performing on the international stage. In recent years, our graduates have performed at the New York City Opera, Opera Bastille (France), Vienna State Opera (Austria), Glyndebourne Opera (England), Houston Grand Opera and the Metropolitan Opera, among many others. Many of our graduates have gone on to pursue advanced degrees at institutions such as the Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Eastman School of Music, Peabody Conservatory and Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music.

Our voice majors in music education successfully take their performing skills into the classroom with at 100 percent job placement rate. Their choral ensembles regularly receive the highest ratings in competitions and state festivals. Many of our music education graduates have taken state and regional leadership positions in VMEA and ACDA.

Guest artists and master classes

VCU’s voice faculty and students maintain close ties with professional arts organizations in the greater Richmond community and beyond. The Virginia Opera regularly conducts seminars for voice students in both a master class setting and in the VCU Opera program. Guest artists with the Mary Anne Rennolds concert series also present master classes. In addition, VCU Opera hosts guest artist workshops and master classes on a regular basis.

Interested in auditioning? Please view the voice audition tips.