All students at Berklee College of Music enter with a principal instrument.
No matter what major you end up pursuing, you will complete at least four semesters of private instruction, labs, and ensembles with this instrument. This fulfills your performance core requirement.
Find Your Voice
The Voice Department at Berklee will widen your range of styles while also helping you focus on your goals as a singer. From jazz and R&B to rock and country to a variety of global styles, you'll find your voice while creating lasting relationships with faculty and peers at the world's largest independent music school and the premier institution for the study of today's music.
Program at a Glance
You will discover your vocal range and develop your own style. Rather than limiting you to one direction, we encourage you to experiment with all of the styles that interest you so that you can challenge yourself, improve your skills, and develop your craft. We will help you to become a vocalist with a strong musical identity.
You'll achieve a solid foundation in the standard technical challenges of professional performance, including improvisation, reading, and interpretation. You'll also receive intensive training in sight-reading and building repertoire while developing an acute awareness of vocal health.
Upon completion of the performance core, students will:
- synthesize and integrate knowledge of contemporary and traditional styles into musical interpretation;
- synthesize and integrate knowledge of posture, breathing, and instrumental technique into their daily practice routines;
- demonstrate technical proficiency on their principal instrument;
- demonstrate the ability to sight-read music in a variety of styles;
- play music in a variety of contemporary and traditional styles;
- play in ensembles of varying size, instrumentation, and stylistic orientation; and
- apply knowledge of musical styles and harmonic practices in improvisation.
Applicants must audition with their chosen instrument when applying to the college. Learn more about the auditioning guidelines for voice.
Once accepted, you will audition with the Voice Department to get your ensemble ratings. These are used for placement into private instruction and ensemble courses. Learn more about placement auditions.
All students complete four semesters to fulfill their performance core requirement:
- Private Instruction 1: Voice
- Private Instruction 2: Voice
- Private Instruction 3: Voice
- Private Instruction 4: Voice
Specialized voice labs bring together vocalists of similar performance levels and provide training in specific aspects of vocal performance, such as sight-reading, self-accompaniment, and rehearsal techniques. Browse instrumental labs in our course catalog.
More than 350 faculty-supervised ensembles rehearse weekly at Berklee. These help you hone essential performance skills and techniques. You will broaden your stylistic range, expand your network of musical friends and colleagues, and gain diverse group-playing experience.
Ensembles are offered in multiple sections for varying levels of ability. You choose the group and style that appeal to you. Your eligibility is determined by ongoing auditions that measure your growth as a performer.
Browse our course catalog to find voice ensembles for R&B, pop, Celtic music, jazz, musical theater, a cappella music, and more.