The Hartt School
Hartt’s Music Conducting program gives you the unique opportunity to gain conducting experience in a variety of genres including vocal, opera, music theatre, and all aspects of instrumental conducting.
About the Major
At Hartt, highly qualified graduate students can pursue advanced study in our unique conducting or instrumental conducting program. These programs are designed for students who are interested in, and demonstrate the potential to succeed in a professional conducting career from university employment to professional conducting appointments.
In addition to spending intensive time in your individual discipline (orchestra, wind band, choir), every student will also conduct and perform with other disciplines. Hartt’s conducting program is truly unique, and we believe that it responds to the need for young conductors to be educated in a variety of conducting experiences.
Studying choral conducting at Hartt offers you rigorous training that includes private conducting lessons, languages and diction, voice study, musicianship, score reading and preparation, performance practice, and an array of academic studies to prepare choral directors for conducting and teaching careers in the community, school, and university settings. Students work closely with Hartt choral ensembles and both degree programs have required choral performances as part of the curriculum.
Instrumental Conducting at The Hartt School is a unique program that strives to prepare you for the many varied and diverse opportunities that await the young conductor. You will work with two faculty members, Glen Adsit (Director of Bands), and Edward Cumming (Director of Orchestral Activities), both of whom have a combined sixty years of experience as performers and teachers all over the world. In addition to weekly private lessons, score analysis and seminar, each conducting student will have the opportunity to pursue further studies with our vocal faculty.
The conducting program normally consists of two masters students and two doctoral students, each of whom has the opportunity to rehearse and perform with the Wind Ensemble, Symphony Band, Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra, Contemporary Ensemble and (depending on the candidate’s interest) Music Theatre and Opera.
Our musical conducting faculty members are experts in their fields.
Glen Adsit is the Director of Bands at The Hartt School where he conducts the Wind Ensemble. In addition, he co-directs Hartt’s new music ensemble (Foot in the Door) and the graduate instrumental conducting degrees with Edward Cumming, Director of Orchestras at Hartt. Professor Adsit was appointed the Director of Bands at The Hartt School in the fall of 2000 and was awarded the 2014 Larsen Award for outstanding teaching at the University of Hartford.
As a musician, performer, educator and conductor, Edward Cumming has distinguished himself in a career that has taken him all over the world. For a decade, he was Music Director of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra, hailed for its remarkable artistic growth during his tenure. His appointment came after a two-year search process involving nearly 300 applicants from around the world.
James E. Jackson III
In addition to being Principal Euphonium of the U. S. Coast Guard Band, James is Conductor of The Hartt School Symphony Band and is a clinician throughout the United States at numerous universities, colleges and public schools. James is a founding member of the tuba and euphonium quartet Alchemy, which annually performs recitals, teach master classes, and conduct ensembles as Artist in Residence at the Horn-Tuba workshop in Jever, Germany.
Kalena Bovell was recently appointed Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra for the 2019-2020 season. She will conduct a large portion of Pops and Education Concerts. Learn more about Kalena.
Flying 3,000 miles across the country to study conducting with Professor Cumming was the best decision I ever made because in him I found a mentor, a colleague and ultimately a friend. The education, support system and guidance that I received from my colleagues was incredible and has definitely attributed to the successes I have continued to see since graduating. No pun intended but The Hartt School will forever hold a special place in my heart.