Music Directors

Arts, Audio/Video Technology & Communications > Performing Arts

Projected Growth: Little or no change

7800+
Projected Job Openings

Considerable Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups, such as orchestras or choirs.

Common job titles of Music Directors include:
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Experience and Education

A considerable amount of work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is needed for this occupation. For example, a person in this occupation must complete four years of college and work for several years in industry to be considered qualified.

  • 37.39% said they needed a Doctoral Degree.

  • 31.56% said they needed a Bachelor's Degree.

Tasks

    Study scores to learn the music in detail, and to develop interpretations.

    Consider such factors as ensemble size and abilities, availability of scores, and the need for musical variety, to select music to be performed.

    Direct groups at rehearsals and live or recorded performances to achieve desired effects such as tonal and harmonic balance dynamics, rhythm, and tempo.

    Use gestures to shape the music being played, communicating desired tempo, phrasing, tone, color, pitch, volume, and other performance aspects.

    Collaborate with music librarians to ensure availability of scores.

    Perform administrative tasks such as applying for grants, developing budgets, negotiating contracts, and designing and printing programs and other promotional materials.

    Assign and review staff work in such areas as scoring, arranging, and copying music, and vocal coaching.

    Meet with soloists and concertmasters to discuss and prepare for performances.

    Position members within groups to obtain balance among instrumental or vocal sections.

    Plan and schedule rehearsals and performances, and arrange details such as locations, accompanists, and instrumentalists.

    Meet with composers to discuss interpretations of their work.

    Conduct guest soloists in addition to ensemble members.

    Plan and implement fundraising and promotional activities.

    Audition and select performers for musical presentations.

    Transcribe musical compositions and melodic lines to adapt them to a particular group, or to create a particular musical style.

    Confer with clergy to select music for church services.

    Engage services of composers to write scores.

    Coordinate and organize tours, or hire touring companies to arrange concert dates, venues, accommodations, and transportation for longer tours.

Tools

Tablet computers

Sustain pedals

Portable loudspeakers

Pipe organs

Pianos

Personal computers

Musical instrument digital interface MIDI sequencers

All Tools

Laptop computers

Keyboard synthesizers

Handbells

Foot switches

Flash drives

External hard drives

Expression pedals

Electronic organs

Desktop computers

Copy machines

Conducting batons

Computer laser printers

Audio interfaces

Acoustic guitars

Technologies

Apple Final Cut Pro

Apple MainStage

Avid Audio Pro Tools

MediaShout

MIDI Maestro

Music Director Pro

Skills

Instructing

Teaching others how to do something.

Active Listening

Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Speaking

Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Critical Thinking

Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making

Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Social Perceptiveness

Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Coordination

Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Monitoring

Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Systems Evaluation

Identifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.

Learning Strategies

Selecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.

Time Management

Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Active Learning

Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.

Service Orientation

Actively looking for ways to help people.

Complex Problem Solving

Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

Management of Personnel Resources

Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.

Reading Comprehension

Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Writing

Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

Persuasion

Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Negotiation

Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

Systems Analysis

Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.

Abilities

Detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.

Auditory and Speech Abilities › Sensory Abilities › Hearing Sensitivity

Listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Comprehension

Communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.

Cognitive Abilities › Verbal Abilities › Oral Expression

Come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).

Cognitive Abilities › Idea Generation and Reasoning Abilities › Fluency of Ideas

Focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.

Auditory and Speech Abilities › Sensory Abilities › Auditory Attention

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Occupation Sections

Knowledge

Fine Arts

Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

English Language

Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

Education and Training

Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Philosophy and Theology

Knowledge of different philosophical systems and religions. This includes their basic principles, values, ethics, ways of thinking, customs, practices, and their impact on human culture.

Administration and Management

Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Personnel and Human Resources

Knowledge of principles and procedures for personnel recruitment, selection, training, compensation and benefits, labor relations and negotiation, and personnel information systems.

Computers and Electronics

Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Psychology

Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.

Clerical

Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Communications and Media

Knowledge of media production, communication, and dissemination techniques and methods. This includes alternative ways to inform and entertain via written, oral, and visual media.

History and Archeology

Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.

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