The School of Music and Theatrical Art joins the School of Music Industry


In August, Jeff Albert announced that the School of Music and Theater Arts would merge with the School of Music Industry in the coming year. Albert, principal of the School of Music Industry, took over the management of both schools while Meg Frazier, former principal of the School of Music and Theater Arts, was promoted to associate dean of the College of Music and Media.
This merger is the most recent example of Loyola integrating different programs. In the spring of 2021, the Studio Art Diploma was merged with the Design Diploma offered by the School of Communication and Design in an effort to encourage collaboration between mediums, according to an email from the Dean of the College of Music. and Media Kern Maass.
Students were notified of the merger of the two music schools by email on August 22.
Although Albert said the merger would occur “within the next year,” his email did not specify what changes would occur.
Maass said the idea of ​​merging the two schools came from a conversation between management and himself about two years ago, during the college restructuring.
“At that time, while I could have forced the two into one, I just think it would have caused more divisions because the teachers weren’t ready for the culture change,” he said.
C. Patrick Gendusa, Chairman of the Department of Theater and Dance Arts, had only positive things to say about the fusion.
“We have no reservations. We are a million times excited and thrilled by this, ”he said.
Popular and commercial music professor Franklin Davis Ⅳ, better known as Berkeley the Artist, shares similar sentiments about the merger of the two schools.
“I always feel that connecting in an interdisciplinary way benefits everyone,” he said. “It gives everyone the opportunity to take their lid off, take the cap off, and challenges us all to become more progressive.”
He said teaching students to operate interdisciplinary in academia prepares them for the global world where nothing is a clue, and he encourages students with doubts about fusion to “remove your comfort and embrace the progress”.
“Everything is interconnected and [the merge] gives us the opportunity to train students to be ready for the real world… the business world… the political world, as well as the entertainment world, ”he said.
In addition to better preparing students for the real world, Maass said unifying the two schools would also treat all genres and disciplines with equal respect.
“There is no difference in creativity or excellence between [study] hip-hop and R&B or classical vocals. They both deserve the same respect, ”he said.
In addition, Albert said the merger will make communication more efficient and easier, especially when it comes to rehearsal rooms and recording studios.
The merger will also allow for a better allocation of funds for music programs. Maass said there would be a better alignment of funding and the use of each school’s endowments to better suit all students.
Albert encourages the students and invites those who have “ideas” about the future of the new program to let him know.
While the merger is still in its early stages, Maass said faculty have already started meeting to decide on the name of the new combined program and to revamp Bachelor of Music degrees.
“I don’t know if anything is going to be drastically different from the start. It will be a slow process to merge things and make them more efficient, ”said Albert.
However, one change that Maass noted was the addition of the entrepreneurial skills built into the music industry curriculum to be added to all music program degrees.
“If you want to have a sustained career in creative disciplines, you have to be an entrepreneur to be successful,” Maass said.
Albert said Loyola has a long history of successful musicians and that he plans to pursue the high standards that have been set.
“I would really like to guide us towards the idea that we can make great art and make a living from it,” he said.

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