Taking Voice Class

MUSIC 101-2 VOICE CLASS (5-student limit) Quarter course.
Weekly, 75-minute group lessons focused on basic technique for voice in a master class setting, accompanist provided. Students will perform song literature appropriate to the individual skill level. Instructor consent required.

Voice Class Auditions. Contact Elizabeth.Linnartz@duke.edu (Monday sections) and Sandra.Cotton@duke.edu (Friday section) for information and to schedule an online audition before the first day of classes. You will not be able to register for Voice Class until after auditions. *Please see below for Fee Information/Financial Aid.

Taking Voice Lessons

Weekly, 60-minute individual private instruction for undergraduate students of varying levels, accompanist provided. Instructor consent required. 

Voice Lesson Auditions. 2022 SPRING: VIRTUAL AUDITIONS
If you are interested in registering for Voice Lessons (weekly, individual, 60 minutes), you will need to sign up for virtual voice auditions, held Thursday, January 6, 2022. You may sign up here for an audition.

  • By midnight, January 5, register for an interview with the faculty and submit the voice audition form, your class schedule, and your audition video at this site:  https://bit.ly/duke-music-spr-22-voice-auditions 
  • In your video, sing one song of your choice with accompaniment (from a live accompanist, YouTube accompaniment, karaoke, online downloads, etc.).  We prefer classical music, but also accept folk music and non-belted musical theater.  
  • The voice faculty will review your materials and then meet you on Zoom on the afternoon of January 6 at your scheduled time for a short interview. 
  • Contact Elizabeth.Linnartz@duke.edu or Sandra.Cotton@duke.edu with further questions.
  •  You will be contacted about your audition results by Friday evening, January 7.

*Please see below for Fee Information/Financial Aid.

*FEE INFORMATION: The University charges an additional fee for class or private lessons, non-refundable after drop/add, and the current amount is always listed at https://music.duke.edu/lessons.

*FINANCIAL AID does cover class or lesson fees; international students should inquire about waiver or aid. Graduate students must ask your department if they will cover your fee. The private lesson fee (MUS 208) is waived for declared music majors.


MUSIC 115S VOCAL DICTION Half course. (Prerequisite for MUSIC 401)

Introduction to the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) with a focus on diction for singing in English, Italian, French and German. Students will be required to sing in class. This is a time-saver for anyone taking lessons. You are highly encouraged to take this course at your earliest opportunity. Only offered in the fall.

Performing Opportunities

Combined Studio Class: On several Tuesdays of the semester these classes will be held for students from all the voice studios from 5:05-6:05 PM in Bone Hall (058 Biddle). MUSIC 208 and MUSIC 401 students are required to perform in Combined Studio Class each semester.

MUSIC 401 RECITAL Advanced Study in Music Performance. One course. ALP
Open only to sophomores, juniors, and seniors possessing an exceptional technical and interpretative command of a musical medium. Requires either a half-length recital at the end of each semester of study or a full-length recital at the end of the second semester. In the latter case, a brief performance before a jury of music department faculty is required at the end of the first semester. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisites: previous registration in private instruction in applied voice at Duke, audition, consent of instructor, and completion of or concurrent enrollment in MUSIC 115S. Instructor consent required. 

MUSIC 213.1 OPERA THEATER. Half course.
Duke Opera Theater aims to educate and introduce Duke students to opera through a wide variety of performance opportunities, including staged scenes, complete operas, concerts of operatic literature, revues of classic Broadway, material from the Great American Songbook, and collaboration with the Duke Jazz Ensemble in staged Swing programs. Opera Theater alumni have gone on to pursue careers in music, teaching and performing in the U.S. and around the world.  Instructor consent required. Contact Prof. David Heid to audition.       

Duke Symphony Orchestra Concerto Contest. The annual concerto contest auditions provide an opportunity for students to audition for and be selected to perform a concerted work with the Duke Symphony Orchestra. Audition dates are announced in the fall at least two months before the auditions. The winners’ performances occur in the spring semester. Contact the Orchestra Music Director or your instructor for further details.

Choral Music. See the Music Department webpage for information on the Duke Chorale. See the Duke Chapel Music website for information on the Duke Chapel Choir, Vespers Ensemble, and Evensong Singers.

Jazz. Contact Dr. John Brown to audition for the Duke Jazz Ensemble or Duke Jazz Combos.

Other Resources

PRACTICE ROOMS: The Department of Music is housed in Mary Duke Biddle Music Building, which provides 20 practice rooms with grand pianos. On West Campus, 8 practice rooms are located on the third floor of McClendon Tower, accessible to students with a Duke ID.

VOICENOTES: Anyone at Duke may sign up for the VoiceNotes listserv to be notified of performances, tickets, rides and events of interest to singers. Voice students will receive important announcements via this newslist. You may sign up here using your @duke.edu preferred email address.

DUKE MUSIC LIBRARY on the upper floor of Biddle Music Building holds printed vocal music of all genres, as well as online databases of songs and performances, many recordings in various media, and study aids for voice students.

SUMMER FUNDING FOR ARTS PROGRAMS & PROJECTS: The Benenson Award has funded voice students attending summer voice programs abroad or in the United States, as well as a project to provide music to dementia patients in a Durham nursing home.

DUKE VOICE CARE CENTER: A clinic in Duke Hospital on West Campus, the Duke Voice Care Center combines the expertise of a team of health care professionals and voice specialists to determine the cause of your voice problem and develop an integrated plan to improve your voice. If you are experiencing laryngitis, hoarseness, or other voice-related problems and want to see a doctor, talk to your Duke voice instructor or call (919) 681-4984 for an appointment. Be sure to explain that you are a singer.