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Greetings from the Dean

Aaron Dworkin

As the dean of the School of Music, Theatre & Dance at the University of Michigan, I am delighted to welcome you to our website and introduce you to the qualities that distinguish our School from all others. I have a particularly unique perspective, as I was a student here myself—I earned both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in violin performance at SMTD and it was here, with the support of incredible teachers and mentors, that I started the Sphinx Organization, which has become the country’s leading national arts organization for transforming lives through the power of diversity and the arts.

Thanks to my dual role as dean and alumnus, I can state emphatically that SMTD is an exceptional place to launch your artistic journey. We offer an unparalleled breadth of opportunities in an environment that focuses on self-empowerment, thoughtful mentorship from a world-class and extraordinarily dedicated resident faculty, and immersive experiences amongst a diverse and engaged university community. In this transformational setting, we provide a unique combination of focused conservatory training alongside multi-disciplinary and entrepreneurial curricula designed to truly empower the next generation of artists and scholars. Our overarching goal is to equip each student with the crucial skills necessary to build an artistically and financially rewarding life embedded in their field of study.

SMTD holds a unique position as a top ranked performing arts program at the country’s number one public research university. Here you will receive one-on-one training with educators who are also working artists and researchers at the top of their fields. At the same time, you will enjoy boundless opportunities to explore a vast range of academics, from across the University, allowing you to craft a program of study that is tailored specifically to your interests and career goals.

I hope you will take some time to explore our website and learn about our programs, faculty, facilities, performance opportunities, and everything else we have to offer. Our team and I welcome your interest and will be happy to answer any questions you may have.


Aaron Dworkin, Dean

Paul Boylan Collegiate Professor of Music

School of Music, Theatre & Dance


Administrative Officers

Aaron Dworkin, Dean

Melody Racine, Senior Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty, and Student Affairs

Jason Corey, Associate Dean for Graduate Studies & Research

John Ellis, Associate Dean for Productions, Programs, and Partnerships

Laura Hoffman, Assistant Dean for Admissions & Enrollment Management

Freyja Harris, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer

Christian Rafidi, Chief Administrative Officer



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Photography Credits:

U-M Photo Services

Joe Welsh

Peter Smith

David Smith

Glen Behring

Tom Bower