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Music Performance Associates

Music Department

Do you want to study music performance in a collegiate program, despite not currently being enrolled in a 4-year institution?

Are you

  • A bachelor’s degree holder preparing for grad school?
  • Or, taking a “bridge” semester (a semester off)?
  • Or, an advanced student taking some time before enrolling in a 4-year institution?
  • Or, an adult seeking a collegiate music experience?

Concordia is now inviting inquiries for Fall 2022 Music Performance Associates. Please reach out to an area director to schedule an audition and meeting to discuss potential involvement as a Music Performance Associate.

Benefits of becoming a Music Performance Associate (MPA)

  • Student-level access to Concordia’s premium music learning center - the Borland-Manske Center, including the large, comfortable practice rooms
  • Full participation in a major Concordia ensemble
  • Music lessons from Concordia’s excellent studio professors
  • Recital and recording opportunities

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Music Performance Associates are admitted for specific non-degree track studies in performance. Becoming an MPA means that you will have the benefits of collegiate structure amidst a healthy community of musicians.

What does an MPA participate in?

In most cases, MPA’s engage in the following:

  • Private lessons with Concordia’s studio faculty (choose 7 or 14 hours per semester)
  • Ensemble membership full participation is required (all rehearsals and performances)
  • Public solo recital (see details below)

How do I gain admittance as an MPA?

MPA’s possess advanced musicianship, as identified through an audition/interview with Concordia faculty, and are admitted at the discretion of the music faculty. Criteria include level of musicianship, availability to serve a needed role in a university ensemble or accompaniment/service playing, and willingness to be a healthy participant in Concordia’s culture. MPA roles may be limited based on ensemble and facility capacities.

Who are good candidates for the MPA program?

  • Students who have completed their undergraduate work and are taking a semester or more to prepare for the next level of auditions (graduate school and/or professional ensembles)
  • Students taking a semester off from their college program
  • Post-college adults seeking the community and structure of a collegiate music learning environment
  • Advanced high school graduates who are preparing to enroll in a 4-year university


  • Music Performance Associates may give a public recital at the end of the semester in the Charlie and Ling Zhang Orchestra Hall or an alternate venue, pending availability.
  • A recital fee of $40 will be charged to all performers.
  • Post-baccalaureate students admitted at the 501 level and taking lessons for 2 units (14 hours) will have the option of giving a full recital as the sole performer.
  • Other students will share a recital. Those taking lessons for 1 unit (7 hours of lessons) may perform one piece or movement. Those taking lessons for 2 units (14 lesson hours) may perform a multi-movement work.
  • Students in jazz or commercial music may be granted studio time instead of a public recital.
  • One hour of rehearsal time (may be split into smaller sessions) with a staff accompanist is included in the private lesson tuition fee.
  • An accompanist fee of $350 applies to full recitalists. Those sharing recitals do not incur an accompanist fee.
  • The public recital will be recorded, and the raw files may be used by the performer for any purposes.

Practice Room Access

  • Concordia’s new practice rooms are relatively large, with a good acoustic “ring,” and many have windows with a great view. They are among the finest in Southern California.
  • MPA’s will have student-level access to the practice rooms in the Borland-Manske Center (app. 6am-midnight).
  • Practice rooms are available on a first-come first-served basis. There is almost always practice room availability.
  • Organ and piano students will have practice access to Concordia’s three pipe organs and concert and practice grand pianos.

Other Amenities

  • A student ID card will be issued to each MPA, allowing access to amenities on campus including student rates for the cafeteria, free parking privileges, and after-business hours access to practice rooms.
  • Students with part-time status may apply for student worker jobs.
  • MPAs may enroll in classes for the part-time tuition rate ($1063/unit for credit, $266/unit to audit).


Concordia’s published part-time tuition rates apply.

  • Music Lessons: $1,216 for 14 hours of private lessons (2 units) or $608 for 7 hours of private lessons (1 unit)
  • Ensemble: The audit fee is used: $266 per ensemble (not for college credit).
  • Jazz/Commercial/Chamber is at a reduced rate of $133 per ensemble. Any tour fees assessed to students will also be applied to MPA’s, when ensembles go on tour (the majority of cost is subsidized by the university budget).
  • Recital: $40 fee per recitalist; $350 accompanist fee applies for full recitals.


  • No student under the age of 18 will be admitted as an MPA.
  • If a performance area or section is approaching capacity, MPA’s will not be selected in that area.
  • Full-time undergraduate students will be given seating/soloist priority in ensembles. However, the repertoire loads are often heavy, allowing directors some flexibility in an attempt to serve the needs of undergraduates as well as MPA’s on principal parts. The ensemble conductor will discuss your likely placement in advance.
  • On-campus housing is primarily for full-time students; however, under certain circumstances, housing may be made available to students with part-time status. As part-time students, MPA’s under the age of 25 who are interested in on-campus housing may petition the Associate Dean for Residential Education and Housing Services.

Attendance/Duration/Right of Dismissal

MPA's must commit to a full semester of participation. Missed rehearsals/performances create a liability for ensembles, so MPA's are expected to have the same commitment level as undergraduate students. Please do not apply for the program if you are not sure about your ability to commit to rehearsal and performance schedules, which are finalized at the beginning of each semester. Students failing to meet attendance requirements, as indicated in ensemble and private lesson syllabi, will be dismissed from the program and no refund will be given. Ensemble directors reserve the right to dismiss students if they do not maintain good standing in the ensemble.

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