Musical discoveries of the greatest variety and depth await Furman’s piano and organ students. Our keyboard faculty members combine decades of performance and teaching experience – a rich asset from which students benefit every day. Furman Bachelor of Music – Piano Performance graduates hold major positions in the musical world, including the current Dean of the Yale School of Music, the Conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, and a faculty member of the Musical Theater Department at the Juilliard School. Many piano and organ performance graduates hold important university and church positions, and maintain professional careers and studios throughout the world.
Furman’s comprehensive piano curriculum includes courses in keyboard literature, chamber music, piano pedagogy, music technology, and jazz piano. It provides a professional level of instruction, guidance and mentorship and lays the groundwork for graduate studies at many of the finest programs across the country.
Furman piano students gain extensive performing experience through solo and chamber music recitals, accompanying, and participation in Furman’s biennial concerto competition. They may also explore additional performance opportunities on and off campus, nurturing confidence, enhancing artistry, and stimulating musical growth.
An outstanding feature of piano study at Furman is the Distinguished Visiting Professor of Piano, who is in residence several times during the academic year. Nationally and internationally renowned artists hold this position, giving recitals and sharing their insights in individual lessons and master classes. Past Distinguished Visiting Professors of Piano have included Richard Cass, Anne Koscielny, Marvin Blickenstaff, and Eduardus Halim. Additional teachers/performers of the highest caliber are also featured each year in performance and master class settings. Open to qualified non-music majors as well, piano study at Furman offers exceptional musical training and experiences within a liberal arts education of the highest level.
Educational experiences abound in the field of collaborative piano. As a piano major, you’ll get guidance and individual coaching throughout your studies. We provide introductory group instruction for freshmen and a course on advanced chamber music for upperclassmen.
Furman University has committed to becoming an All-Steinway School, a distinction held by only a few of the nation’s most esteemed collegiate music programs. This means we commit to ensuring that 90 percent or more of the instrument inventory is Steinway or Steinway-branded pianos. Piano area coordinator and Professor of Music Derek Parsons and pianist Ruby Morgan, professor emeritus, are spearheading the effort to make Furman an All-Steinway School. As part of a $2.5 million fundraising effort, up to 50 new Steinway pianos are planned to occupy Daniel Recital Hall, faculty studios and practice rooms. Read more about “Pianos for Paladins.”
Furman students intending to major in music must perform an audition and complete a music theory placement examination. Final approval for a music degree takes place during your sophomore year. Learn more about auditions.
The bachelor of music in organ or piano performance provides our students with an opportunity to perfect their skills through one-on-one instruction and performance studies. You must accompany for two senior recitals or three junior recitals during the same term. Permission for exercising this option must be obtained in advance and in writing from our department chair.
See the suggested course sequence for a B.M. in Performance, Piano Emphasis [PDF].