Courses & Programs

upcoming music events

Curious about what music events are coming up next? Access the Spring 2019 music schedule below.

music events

Music Department

Love music? Whether you are enrolled in the degree program, the certificate program, or taking some courses for interest and enrichment, we will make your experience exciting and rewarding.

Get involved in HCC's dynamic music program, which offers both a transfer associates of arts degree and a performance certificate.

A jazz group performs

Students of all majors are encouraged to participate in music ensembles, so if you performed in a vocal or instrumental group in high school, you can continue here at HCC. If you choose to major in music, you'll learn all the fundamentals and work on the latest technologies in music.

Graduates are prepared for further study in:

  • Music education
  • Performance (classical or jazz)
  • Music business
  • Music theater
  • Composition and arranging
  • Sound recording
  • Music therapy
  • And more!

Explore your career in music with our dedicated professors, accomplished musicians who will prepare you to transfer to any four-year music school.

Holyoke Community College is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM).

Music Student Handbook

music programs

Music program students receive a rich perspective of music through exposure to many artistic and culturally diverse styles. The department offers free public concerts, hosts guest performers and speakers, and sponsors an annual jazz festival, all of which develop a strong bond with the surrounding community. Students enter the Music Program through audition. Those students demonstrating significant potential, but with limited background in music reading or performance technique, will be placed in preparatory classes designed to develop the skills needed for college-level work. 

The purpose of the Music Performance Certificate is to acknowledge college-level work in music for those who are not completing the full A.A. degree in music. Upon completion of the certificate, when combined with another associate degree program, students will be prepared to pursue a Bachelor of Arts (rather than a Bachelor of Music) degree, or minor in music, at their transfer institution. Students who are not also enrolled in an Associate program will be prepared to audition at institutions that require a performance audition for admission. The certificate may be used by those students who would like to augment any degree program at the college with serious study in music, or simply to improve performance skills for personal enrichment.

I think about HCC a lot, and I attribute the success that I have now in large part to here, and my success making it through my grad studies. It gave me an introduction to a life when I wasn't sure what I wanted to do yet."

HCC music alum & oboe player Aaron Lakota '05

  • A student playing guitar

    hitting the right note

    HCC music program grads are prepared for further study in music education, performance (classical or jazz), music business, music theater, composition and arranging, sound recording, music therapy, and more.

  • A group of singers

    state-of-the-art spaces

    A view of Fine & Performing Arts rehearsal room 137.

  • Two guitar players

    learn to teach

    Classes like String Instrumental Methods will teach you how to teach others in specific areas of instrumental or vocal music.

    String Instrumental Methods

  • A singer performing with sheet music


    Ready to take your place on the stage? Learn about the fundamentals of music performance.

upcoming music events

Curious about what music events are coming up next? Access the Spring 2019 music schedule below.

music events