Collegium Musicum explores instrumental and vocal music from the Middle Ages through the nineteenth century. The basic ensemble is a chamber orchestra that focuses on appropriate performance styles for older music in the twenty-first century. Through rehearsals and performances, students will learn appropriate historical styles of performance practice. Issues such as instrumental development, nationalistic performance styles (i.e., Italian, French, German, English), sound production, articulation, metrical hierarchy and accentuation, and ornamentation will be covered.
Smaller chamber groups for instruments and voices are encouraged. The Conservatory has a good collection of Renaissance instruments, and consorts of recorders, sackbuts, and gambas are often created.
Each semester culminates in a group concert performance, in which student opportunities for concertos and arias are plentiful. The ensemble also frequently collaborates with choral and operatic ensembles.