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Music majors focus on the science and artistry of this sacred and ancient communication tool. Students acquire the knowledge and perception essential to excellent musicianship. Private lessons, master classes, recitals, and vocal and instrumental performing groups serve to advance and strengthen the student’s skills in making music.

  • The music major features academic studies in music analysis, music literature and repertoire, and the historical development of music. 

    What Makes the Program Distinctive?

    WLC’s music program offers the chance to study both the methods and the aesthetics of this powerful mode of communication. Students can develop their talents and enjoy the enriching, broadening experience of music performance, both individually and as part of a group. The program prepares musicians for music ministry, educational settings, and graduate studies. The Music Department is housed in the Center for Arts and Performance, which features a 370-seat concert hall, practice rooms, a rehearsal hall, a multimedia lecture hall, and an electronic music lab. This state-of-art facility is home to the college’s many fine performing ensembles.


    Music scholarship opportunities are available to students with vocal, instrumental, and accompanying talent. The music department awards scholarships in the amount of $2,000 and $1,000 (plus free lessons) per year, as well as free lesson scholarships. All full-time freshmen and transfer students may apply for these music scholarships, regardless of intended major.


    Choral Performance

    Membership in the 68-voice Wisconsin Lutheran Choir is by audition. The choir performs four concerts on campus each year, provides music for area WELS congregations, and tours annually. The choir rehearses five hours per week. Its repertoire includes music from the 16th through 21st centuries, sung in original languages. Membership in the 28-voice Chamber Choir is by audition only, for members of the Wisconsin Lutheran Choir. The Chapel Choir, a non-auditioned choral ensemble, performs in one concert each semester as well as in chapel services.

    Instrumental Performance

    The Concert Band is an ensemble that performs the finest of wind band literature. Membership in this organization is through a seating audition. The band meets five hours each week while exploring a wide variety of band compositions and arrangements. The ensemble presents concerts on campus and tours regionally and nationally. Other instrumental ensembles include a Brass Ensemble, Chamber Ensemble, Handbells, and Jazz Band.

    Keyboard Performance

    There are many opportunities for accompanying each year. Students accompany the choirs and band, play the Schlicker pipe organ during chapel, or accompany other students during recitals.



    Annual performance tours are a time for students to travel and enjoy the camaraderie of their group, and to give them a chance to experience what it is like to perform in various spaces for different audiences. Most of all, WLC tours give students the opportunity to serve as ambassadors for the college and for their Savior as they share his love through music. The Wisconsin Lutheran Choir and Concert Band each tour annually to locations throughout the United States.

    Every four years the choir embarks on a two-week international tour. In May of 2013, the choir toured England and Ireland and performed in such notable venues as Holy Trinity in Stratford-Upon-Avon, St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, and the Collegiate Church of St. Nicholas in Milwaukee Irish Sister City of Galway. In 2017, the 500th anniversary year of the Reformation, the ensemble will tour Germany and other western European destinations.


    Graduate School

    Many WLC music majors have attended well respected graduate schools, including:

    • Indiana University
    • Truman State University
    • University of Nebraska
    • University of New Mexico
    • University of Southern California  
    • VanderCook College of Music

    Career Options

    WLC is known for producing successful school band directors, music teachers, and church music directors and organists. Music majors also have gone on to perform with the Florentine Opera Company, Milwaukee Opera Theatre, and Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and to work in the music industry with such companies as Hal Leonard Corporation and Interstate Music.