This exciting new BA degree contains a mix of coursework from the College of Music and the Haslam College of Business. Students take 8 hours of music “Performance Electives” (i.e. applied lessons, ensembles, or a combination of both) as well as a core in music theory, musicology, music technology, music business, and flexible music electives based on interests and career goals. On the business side, students select from one of two tracks – Professional Music Focus or Entrepreneurship in Music Focus – and they take courses in topics such as management, finance, legal environments in business, entrepreneurship, and new venture planning. The capstone requirement includes an independent project in music business and entrepreneurship, a fusion of the two concentrations of the degree.
Since it is a BA degree and has a flexible curriculum with the options and tracks outlined below, it distinguishes itself from other BM music industry and music business degrees by functioning as a true hybrid program between the College of Music and the Haslam College of Business.
How to Apply
The BA Music Business Administration degree requires an interview with the program coordinator. Students must be accepted into the College of Music. Performance auditions are not required, but if students wish to complete their “Performance Elective” credits through applied lessons they must audition for a spot in an applied studio.
1. Apply to the University of Tennessee. Visit the admissions website for more information.
2. Submit an application to the College of Music through getacceptd.com/utkmusic. Submit a digital portfolio showcasing music that you have either played, sung, written or created. Please upload a minimum of two files in your GetAcceptd application.
- Liberal arts and science-based curriculum with a dual focus on music and business administration
- Take courses in music theory, keyboard, musicology, music technology, and music business, as well as economics, finance, marketing, and management
- Year 3 features an internship with a music-related business, and Year 4 includes a project in music business
- Personal mentoring and professional development
- Take a combination of lessons or ensembles as desired. Auditions are required for private lessons and some ensembles.
- Flexible curriculum: 12 credits come from a basket of options in music technology, performance, theory, musicology, jazz, and keyboard
- Follow one of two tracks: Professional Music Focus or Entrepreneurship in Music Focus
- With the Professional Music Focus, work in traditional music business related fields such as music recording labels, streaming services, arts organizations, publishing and legal matters, copyright, artist relations, management, business development, publicity, and promotion
- With the Entrepreneurship in Music Focus, work in more independent music fields such as music business startups, social media and marketing, songwriting, and production
- Continued study in fields outside of music such as business and law
- Work in non-profit and social entrepreneurship and arts organizations
Meet Our Faculty
Coordinator of Music Business, Lecturer of Jazz Guitar | firstname.lastname@example.org
Having been praised as possessing “pristine playing, meticulous composing” and “a very personal voice deserving of attention,” award-winning guitarist, composer, and educator Denin Slage-Koch has done a lot. He’s played and recorded with artists like Ryan Keberle, Shane Endsley, Carmen Bradford, Clay Jenkins, Brad Goode, Wycliffe Gordon, and the Colorado Symphony, written music for artists like Melissa Aldana and Carmen Bradford, recorded three albums of original music and served as sideman for many more, and published a book.
As a guitarist, Slage-Koch’s accolades include a multiple Downbeat Student Music Awards, a 2022 Pathways to Jazz grant award, and performances at venues including the national Jazz Education Network conference, Vail Jazz, Boettcher Concert Hall, and Dazzle Denver, among many others. His debut album, “re: manhattan project,” is a ten-movement suite for jazz quintet that reimagines the story of the Manhattan Project, which Slage-Koch’s hometown of Richland, WA was deeply involved in. “re: manhattan project,” received a four-star rating on AllAboutJazz.com and has been praised as “remarkable,” “extraordinary, “moving” and containing “beautiful interplay.” His third album, “It Comes in Waves,” featuring trombonist Ryan Keberle and trumpeter Shane Endsley, will be released in Fall 2023.
Slage-Koch is also frequently in-demand as a composer and arranger for artists and ensembles across the United States. In 2023, he received a Herb Alpert Young Composer’s award for his piece “It Comes in Waves,” and in 2022 his composition “One for Honey” was recognized as an honorable mention at the Ithaca College Jazz Composition Contest against entries from 15 countries. Slage-Koch has written and arranged for artists including Kurt Rosenwinkel, Melissa Aldana, Carmen Bradford, and the Colorado Jazz Repertory Orchestra, among others, and maintains a consistent workload of commissions.
Senior Lecturer, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Studio Music & Jazz | email@example.com
Trumpeter, arranger and composer Vance Thompson is the director of the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra, a seventeen piece big band comprised of the top professional players in East Tennessee. Thompson founded the group in 1999 and established a non-profit organization to support it in 2000. It has since developed into one of the region’s most respected arts organizations.
The organization presents an annual six-concert big band series, a monthly small group concert series and an outdoor Summer series that runs weekly from May through August. It also sponsors an honors band for high school students and presents free, in-school concerts throughout the school year.
The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra has appeared at major jazz festivals in Europe, released five critically acclaimed CD recordings and sold-out dozens of events in venues ranging from 280 to over 1,500 seating capacity. Artists who have appeared with the band include pianists Hank Jones, Monty Alexander, Mulgrew Miller and Donald Brown; bassists John Clayton and Eddie Gomez; saxophonists James Moody, Maceo Parker, Vincent Herring and Greg Tardy; trumpeters Terrel Stafford, Marcus Printup, Sean Jones and Ingrid Jensen; trombonists Wycliffe Gordon and Conrad Herwig; clarinetist Ken Peplowski; vibraphonist Stefon Harris; and multi-instrumentalist James Morrison.
The orchestra’s CD recordings feature Thompson’s arrangements and have received heavy airplay across North America on Sirius satellite radio’s “Real Jazz” channel and other nationally syndicated broadcasts. These recordings have earned four star reviews in Downbeat Magazine and All Music Guide, topped the sales charts on popular internet music sites like Emusic.com and been spotlighted on NPR’s All Songs Considered.Thompson is originally from East Tennessee and is a graduate of the music programs at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville and DePaul University in Chicago. Thompson taught improvisation and small jazz ensembles at DePaul before moving back to Knoxville in 1999. In addition to teaching private trumpet lessons and coaching small jazz ensembles, Thompson teaches classes in jazz arranging, jazz history, jazz styles and music business.