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  • Find opportunities in and outside of the classroom to develop the qualities that make you a distinct musician. Expand your talents. Improvise. Create from scratch. Reach across disciplines. Perform and find yourself as an artist.

    Make Your Ensemble

    Explore new facets of your artistry. Each semester, you will participate in an improv ensemble. Ensembles recast each semester, allowing you to choose the type of music you want to make, the musicians you want to play with, and the directors you want as your mentors.

    Elective Ensembles

    One semester, you’ll be playing in the Electric Miles Davis Ensemble, under the direction of a musician like Adam Holzman, who played with Miles in the 1980s. The next, you’ll play in The New School's Studio Orchestra, collaborating with Mannes performers in our largest ensemble, under the direction of legendary musicians like Ingrid and Christine Jensen (ensemble leaders change every semester). Make any of our 50 elective ensembles your own.

    Elective Ensembles include:

    • Afro-Cuban Jazz Orchestra
    • Americana Ensemble
    • Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers Ensemble
    • Brazilian Drum Ensemble
    • Brazilian Ensemble
    • Carnival Caravan Ensemble
    • Charles Mingus Ensemble
    • Charlie Parker Ensemble
    • Chick Corea Ensemble
    • Electric Miles Davis Ensemble
    • Gospel Chorus
    • Guitar Duos
    • Herbie Hancock Ensemble
    • Indian Ensemble
    • John Coltrane Ensemble
    • John Zorn's Cobra Ensemble
    • Live Electronica Orchestra
    • New York City Composers Ensemble
    • Ornette Coleman Ensemble
    • Progressive Rock Ensemble
    • R & B Ensemble
    • Sonny Rollins Ensemble
    • Standards Ensemble
    • Sun Ra Orchestra
    • Super Trios
    • Thelonious Monk Ensemble
    • The New School Studio Orchestra
    • Vocal Blues Ensemble
    • Wayne Shorter Ensemble

    Begin Your Career in New York City

    Don’t just live in one of the most thriving music scenes in the world — play in it. With partnerships around the city, you can easily take part in jam sessions at some of the greatest jazz clubs in NYC, like Smalls and Zinc Bar, or find yourself onstage at cultural hotspots like the Morgan Library and the High Line. Play in venues across the city and make all of New York your stage, bandstand, studio, and cultural playground.

    The World Is Your Stage

    Travel the world as an artist. Our international partnerships will develop you into the kind of musician you want to be. Play gigs at the Bern International Jazz Festival in Switzerland in one of the selected quartets, or represent the school with your performing talents at conferences and festivals around the globe. Share your unique voice with the world in one of the partnerships and opportunities we provide every year.


    Why wait to launch your career until you graduate? Start performing and making connections now in a world center of jazz — New York City.

    We offer NYC’s largest music industry internship program. Our students have interned at organizations such as the Mingus Foundation, EMI/Blue Note Records, Nonesuch Records, Jazz at Lincoln Center, ASCAP, VH1 Save-the-Music, the Bunker Studio, Chelsea Music Festival, Le Poisson Rouge, the Jazz Gallery, and others.

    Our Gig Office can also give you a start at becoming your own entrepreneur. We offer an enormous range of performance opportunities and will help you learn to market yourself as a performer.

    Make connections with the music industry, with working professionals, and with your fellow students in the cultural capital of the world.

  • Take The Next Step

Submit your application


To apply to any of our undergraduate programs (except the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs) complete and submit the Common App online.

Undergraduate Adult Learners

To apply to any of our Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.


To apply to any of our Master's, Doctoral, Professional Studies Diploma, and Graduate Certificate programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.