DEPARTMENT OF CONDUCTING
The Department of Conducting was established in 1949, the same year in which the Tokyo Geijutsu Daigaku was established. In those days, students seeking to study conducting were required to transfer from other departments in their third year. Now, students are enrolled directly into the Department of Conducting upon admission to the university.
Students of the department are trained in the skills needed, as professional conductors, to conduct a wide range of music, including symphonic music, operas, ballets, and oratorios. The educational philosophy of the Department of Conducting is to train students not just as highly skilled musicians and artists, but as conductors with exceptional interpersonal and leadership skills, based on lessons in practical techniques and through various classes provided by the department.
For this reason, in addition to lessons in practical techniques, students are encouraged to gain a wide range of knowledge and experience required by conductors, including studies of musical works and treatises on theory. A major goal for the students following graduation is to work as a capable professional conductor and to function as a musician capable of making broad contributions to society through strong leadership in art and music.
Curriculum (undergraduate education)
Students in the Department of Conducting are required, as a matter of course, to acquire solfege and music dictation skills, but more importantly, they are required to develop a rich and persuasive musical sensibility. To nurture musical maturity, the curriculum covers various aspects of music, including composition, musical instruments, and vocal music.
During the first and second years, students master basic theory and technique, including solfege, harmony, and score reading. From the third year, students choose from a wide range of studies, including more advanced score reading, music history, opera-conducting practice, singing, and playing musical instruments. In the fourth year, students are given the opportunity to actually conduct an orchestra and to direct an on-campus concert as well as a graduation concert.
Curriculum (graduate education and research)
Based on foundational knowledge and techniques established during the undergraduate years, the graduate program focuses on more advanced and specialized research. Studies such as special research in conducting and treatises on theory increase student knowledge. Setting a research theme each school year, students systematically prepare to write their thesis and other assignments. On completing the program, students are given the opportunity to conduct an actual orchestra, a "completion concert."
During their time in school, students are exposed to a wide range of activities outside the Department of Conducting curriculum. These include master classes and workshops provided by noted conductors both from home and abroad.
Following graduation, many students continue their education by studying abroad, participating in international competitions, and so forth. Graduates are currently active with orchestras, opera houses, and other musical institutions, both at home and abroad.
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