Music Business Program
Our program is designed for students who want to earn a place in the music business industry. We provide the preparation for employment in:
- Music Products
- Arts Administration
- Recording Industry
It combines the elements of our strong Bachelor of Music with course work tied into the Departments of Business and Economics. We provide you with a solid foundation both in music and performance a well as knowledge about what makes the industry tick. Our faculty are true experts in audio technology, music retail, music production and music product development. They know the score!
The Crane School of Music offers a Loading.... This degree program works closely with the Crane Institute for Music Business to provide the most comprehensive preparation for employment in the music industry. We also offer a Loading... for music majors and non-music majors. Unlike the Bachelor of Music degree, no audition is required for non-music majors who minor is Music Business.
The primary mission of The Crane Institute for Music Business is to enhance communication and facilitate a mutually beneficial partnership between and Crane School of Music and the music products industry. It works to promote partnerships with music industry associations and businesses.Students in the Music Business major are required to obtain practical experience in their chosen field through an off-campus internship.
Some examples of recent internships include:
In Music Products:
- Yamaha International, Buena Park, CA and Indianapolis, IN
- D'Addario + Co., Farmingdale, NY and Nashville, TN
- Samson Technologies, Hauppauge, NY
- Sabian Inc. Marshfield, MA
- DANSR, Chicago, IL
- Boosey and Hawkes, New York, NY
- EMI Music, New York, NY
- Shar Music, Ann Arbor, MI
In Arts Administration:
- Chamber Music American, New York, NY
- OPERA American, New York, NY
- Aspen Music Festival & School, Aspen, CO
- Hermitage Artist Retreat Gr., Englewood, FL
- The Metropolitan Opera, New York, NY
- Austin Classical Guitar, Austin, TX
- Eagle Rock Entertainment, New York, NY
- Symphony Space, New York, NY
- Sarasota Opera, Sarasota, FL
- North Carolina Symphony, Raleigh, NC
In the Recording Industry:
- Linden Oaks Studio, Rochester, NY
- Subcat Studio, Syracuse, NY
- VH1, New York, NY
- Fireplace Studios, New York, NY
- Cove City Sound Studios/Brown Dog Records, Glen Cove, NY
The Crane Institute for Music Business provides opportunities for students to interact with industry professionals through such activities as Music Business Roundtables and Executives-in-Residence program.
Recent Executives-in-Residences include Mary Luehrsen (Director of Public Affairs and Government Relations for NAMM, and Executive Director of the NAMM Foundation), Bob Morrison (founder of Music for All, former CEO of the VH1 Save the Music Foundation, Executive Director of NAMM's American Music Conference, co-creator of the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation), and Robert Farmer (General Counsel for the rock band Rush).
Since 2006 music business students at Crane have participated in The NAMM Show held each January in Anaheim, California. The students have worked as interns for industry sponsors gaining valuable experience working in the industry's biggest trade show and forming important industry relationships. Crane is the only college program in the country that affords their students this opportunity. In recent years, Crane has sponsored a NAMM version of the Sandy Feldstein Roundtable during the NAMM show. Read about the 2018 NAMM Roundtable here.
As she pulls the microphone close and hits record, Tatiana Merced ’24 captures audio for her podcast series—part of a multi-year Presidential Scholars project to examine how people of color have shaped the fabric of music history. Merced’s ongoing research, and subsequent podcasts, are now available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Youtube, and feature interviews with prominent musicians, conductors and composers from diverse backgrounds including Crane’s own Dr. Michael Dudley Jr.
Lights, Camera, Action
During her final semester at Crane, Erika Murata ’22 lined up the internship of a lifetime, working on the set of the Late Show with Seth Meyers in New York City. Leaning on skills from her music business degree, she has been assisting audio engineers and the house band as they prepare the music for the show.
Slingshot to Success
Just four years removed from The Crane School of Music, Jordan Olinsky ’17 is already making a name for himself in the music business industry. After graduating from SUNY Potsdam in 2017, Olinsky immediately landed a job as the northwest division manager for Buffet-Crampon, a music company that has been manufacturing wind instruments for close to 200 years. In 2019 he received a promotion and moved to Houston, Texas, where he oversees an even larger market as the southwest division manager for the company.
The Perfect Balancing Act
Pursuing a degree at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music is a daunting task in and of itself, but Natalia Buitrago ’21 went the extra mile, recently graduating with a double major in music performance and music business. Over the past four years she has not only continued to refine her abilities as a musician, but she learned valuable entrepreneurial and communication skills.
Love and Music
As an alumnus of SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music, Drew Coles ’12, has come full circle, and is now leading Crane’s music business program as an assistant professor and program director. Leaning on the experience he’s acquired as a musician and entrepreneur through the Metropolitan Players—a highly successful wedding band business he launched with his wife Erin Coles ’12—he is sharing his real-world experiences with his students, and preparing them for successful music business careers.
The Man Behind the Music
The otherworldly sound of an orchestra playing Adagio for Strings can be lost without someone like Dr. Douglas McKinnie, the audio and video streaming engineer at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music. Since 2014, McKinnie has worked behind the scenes at Crane to ensure that hundreds of performances are professionally recorded—leaning on two decades of experience as the chief engineer of live sound at Tanglewood, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Kelley DiPasquale '20
Set high in the Rocky Mountains, Banff, Alberta, is known for its world-class skiing and prestigious film festival. But for Kelley DiPasquale, a non-traditional student in the music business program at SUNY Potsdam’s Crane School of Music, it was something else entirely that drew her to the snowy mountain town. DiPasquale is in the middle of a six-month-long audio recording internship at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. The hands-on practicum has allowed her to oversee professional audio recordings for bands like the Rapidgrass, a Colorado-based bluegrass quintet, and work with jazz drummer Jerry Granelli, best known for recording the “Charlie Brown Christmas” album with the Vince Guaraldi Trio.
Paul Dougall ’20
Paul Dougall ’20 is a true Renaissance man. Now in his last year at SUNY Potsdam, he is completing not only a degree in music business, but two separate degrees in mathematics as part of the Department of Mathematics’ BA / MA program—a unique opportunity for highly motivated students to graduate with both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics at the same time. Over the summer he landed an internship at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center where he was able to incorporate all of those disciplines.
Rebecca Scholldorf ’15
When she was still a sophomore, alumna Rebecca Scholldorf ’15, a clarinet performance major at the Crane School of Music, decided to pursue a second degree in music business. It proved to be one of the best decisions of her life. After completing the required internship for her music business degree her senior year, she was immediately offered a job by that same company, DANSR, Inc., the exclusive distributor of Vandoren reeds, mouthpieces and accessories.
Brian Dougherty '06
Brian Dougherty landed his first job in the music industry immediately after graduation. What started as an internship for Samson Technologies his junior year, parlayed into a full-time position that started nine days after Commencement. Now he works for Sennheiser—one of the leading music industry companies in the world.
Johnna Bernard ’18
Shortly before graduating in 2018, SUNY Potsdam alumna Johnna Bernard ’18 completed an amazing internship working for the Metropolitan Opera National Council in Manhattan—an unbelievable hands-on experience at the world's most famous opera house.