Jazz and Contemporary Music

Passionate about music? Serious about your future? Then consider our Jazz and Contemporary Music Program as your direct pathway to a successful career in the exciting world of professional music.

Degrees Offered: B.M. and A.S.
Offered on the Augusta Campus


UMA insures a well-rounded and relevant education by providing a diverse array of concentrations reflecting performance, composition, recording technology or pedagogy. Designed to address your future career vision, there's a concentration interest for any student wanting to study at UMA.


Guitar, bass, keyboard, brass, woodwind, voice, percussion... or perhaps your instrument is violin or French horn. You came to play, and UMA provides! You will receive hours of hands-on performance opportunities every week. Lessons, ensembles, recitals, clinics and the acclaimed Jazz Week Concert Series at the end of each semester all contribute to the real-world experience you desire. And no matter what your stylistic direction or preferred instrument may be, you definitely have a home at UMA. Our broad performance diversity explores jazz, Latin, blues, modern rock, funk, fusion and popular music while embracing the important foundational idioms of Western classical styles. UMA's Performance Concentration is the curriculum to master real-world contemporary music performance.


UMA has a long tradition of turning out competent, dedicated teachers who go on to secure Maine State Certification and enjoy long and fruitful careers within elementary, high school and private institution environments. And with UMA's new Education courses (including student teaching) you can create a pathway to Certification, all at UMA.  Once our students have graduated with a B.Mus with a Music Education concentration, they are finding teaching positions in institutions that are regional, but are sometimes far beyond the Maine borders. Some UMA students continue on to advanced degrees, with an eye towards becoming a music professor in a college or university setting. No matter which level of professional teaching you may want to pursue, UMA's Education Concentration provides a strong foundation with which to achieve your goals.

Audio Recording

Your private studio creating personal projects. A local production facility generating band projects, TV and radio spots, and small film scores. The big scene in Nashville, Los Angeles, New York, where history-making music is recorded. Regardless of your aspirations being small town or big city oriented, to be a successful engineer, you need to build on the basics, and concisely develop your tracking, mixing, processing, mastering, production and editing skills. There is no better resource in northern New England for refining these skills than the Audio Technology Concentration at UMA. Big rooms, lots of mics, great outboard gear, Tascam™ and ProTools™ makes it all happen. Not to mention a horde of musicians on-site, ready to supply your projects with capable session players. Formalize your passion for recording at UMA!

Sonic Arts and Composition

We are surrounded by music every moment of the day... song-writing, radio, TV, film, stage, internet, video gaming. Even something as mundane as a car alarm or dashboard warning sound requires some form of creative musical interaction. With a degree from UMA, based in our Composition Concentration, you become the creative force behind any of these products or venues. An expert multi-stylistic faculty well seasoned in diverse compositional techniques guides your way. Current MIDI technology, readily available musicians and performance opportunities in which to hear your work performed all combine to provide you with a very special environment for exploring and refining the fine art of composition. Perhaps the next blockbuster movie will have your name in the credit roll as music composer!