Applied Music

Lessons are available to all W&L students, regardless of major. Students can study many orchestra or band instruments, piano, guitar, drum set and voice.

Applied Music Instruction Policy

Applied music is the study and practice of solo performance. While it is somewhat subjective, there are some specific components of applied study at Washington and Lee University. Lessons are available to all W&L students, regardless of major. Students can study many orchestra or band instruments, piano, guitar, drum set, voice and composition. Faculty include W&L professors and staff as well as professional musicians and professors from nearby universities. Applied instruction seeks to improve skills by correcting problems and strengthening positive areas.


1. Applied lessons are offered in piano, organ, voice, violin, viola, cello, bass, steel string guitar, classical guitar, brass, woodwinds, jazz improvisation, composition, and percussion. (Music 141, 241, 341, 441)

2. One credit is awarded for ten 45-minute lessons in Fall and Winter Terms or eight 55-minute lessons in Spring Term.

3. Students are required to practice a minimum of five hours per week in Fall and Winter Terms, and seven hours per week in Spring Term.

4. Students who show sufficient skill and dedication may be permitted to register for two credits at the 300 or 400 level only. This will result in two 45-minute lessons each week for ten weeks of the Fall and Winter Terms and require the student to practice a minimum of ten hours per week during these terms. This option is not available for the Spring Term.

5. Students will receive a syllabus outlining what is expected of them in terms of acquiring technique, learning repertoire, etc. no later than the first lesson of each term.


1. The fee is $360.00 per credit for Fall, Winter and Spring Terms.

2. Fees will be billed to the student's account by the Business Office.

3. Declared music majors are eligible for one set of free applied lessons each term in their primary instrument. Students taking applied piano lessons to satisfy piano proficiency requirements are exempt from the fee for those lessons. Students for whom the applied music fee presents a hardship may appeal to the Music Department Head for an exemption.

4. A student who drops applied music after the last day of the first full week of applied lessons will be charged the full fee.


Fall Term registration is accomplished simply by registering online for the proper course through Workday. A list of course numbers, instructors and instruments is available from Department of Music Administrative Assistant.

If applied music registration results in an overload, the student should get permission from the appropriate Dean to take an overload. Such permission is commonly given for applied music.

Registration for applied lessons requires permission from the instructor. Students may request permission to register for applied lessons by request a course section prerequisite override in Workday. Instructions on how to initiate the request can be found by visiting Request Course Section Prerequisite Override on the ITS website. Once the instructor approves the request, the student will then be able to register for the course.

Special Rules and Regulations

1. All students enrolled in applied lessons are required to perform in at least two studio classes in each of the Fall and Winter Terms and one studio class in the Spring Term. In addition, performance at a final jury will be required of each student for the Fall and Winter Terms. Specific requirements for the studio classes and jury will be determined by the individual instructor. Although there is no jury required in the Spring Term, each instructor will expect students to perform at least one selection as a summative assessment of work done during the term.

2. Some students will be chosen to perform on at least one of the music convocation performances that take place each Fall and Winter Term. In addition, some students may be chosen to perform on masterclasses with guest artists or for adjudicated competitions.

3. Attendance is required for every lesson. In case of unexpected conflicts, students must contact the instructor via e-mail as early in advance as possible. Make-up lessons may be scheduled at the instructor's discretion if the absence is unavoidable (i.e., illness or family emergency, participation in documented off-campus academic/athletic event). Documentation such as short-term medical adjustments may be requested in certain cases.

4. An instructor may decide at any time that a student should not continue lessons into the next term if the student is not showing enough commitment. The student will be informed of such a decision before the registration period for the next term.

Jury Exams

Each student enrolled for applied music must perform for the faculty at the close of each Fall and Winter term. This experience serves as the final exam for applied instruction. The purpose is to monitor student progress from term to term. Each faculty member will set specific goals for the student to accomplish during a term of study. Because each term of study builds on the previous term(s) of study, the student must remember that grading is based on the level of progress for the current term only.

Juries may not be performed in advance of their scheduled day. Exception: Students who perform as a soloist with the orchestra or who present junior or senior recitals are exempt from the jury exam for that term. Piano juries occur on Monday, vocal juries occur on Tuesday, and instrumental juries occur on Wednesday of finals/exam week during the Fall and Winter terms.

Applied Music Instructors

Akiko Konishi piano
William McCorkle piano
Patrick Summers piano
Gregory Parker voice
Christine Fairfield voice
Terry Vosbein composition 
Heather Dobbins double reeds
Erin Murphy flute
James Tobin clarinet
Ray Zubler saxophone

jazz improvisation

Matthew Schucker low brass
Clinton Linkmeyer high brass
Jamie McArdle violin
Julia Goudimova cello
Thomas Stevens viola
Jesse Harper guitar
Shelby Shelton percussion

Contact the Department of Music's Administrative Assistant for more information at