Career and Education Opportunities for Music Directors in Huntsville, Alabama
If you want to be a music director, the Huntsville, Alabama area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 1,000 people are currently employed as music directors in Alabama. By 2016, this is expected to grow 26% to 1,260 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for music directors are expected to grow by about 10.0%. In general, music directors direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups.
The average wage in the general category of Musical Entertainment jobs is $11 per hour or $30,880 per year in Alabama, and an average of $19 per hour or $40,353 per year nationwide. Jobs in this field include: music instructor, music minister, and music pastor.
There are two schools within twenty-five miles of Huntsville where you can study to be a music director, among eleven schools of higher education total in the Huntsville area. Given that the most common education level for music directors is a Bachelor's degree, you can expect to spend about four years training to become a music director if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Music Director
In general, music directors direct and conduct instrumental or vocal performances by musical groups.
Music directors direct groups at rehearsals and live or recorded performances in order to produce desired effects such as tonal and harmonic balance dynamics and tempo. They also consider such factors as ensemble size and abilities, availability of scores, and the need for musical variety, so as to decide on music to be performed. Equally important, music directors have to position members within groups to obtain balance among instrumental or vocal sections. They are often called upon to formulate and schedule rehearsals and performances, and arrange details such as locations and instrumentalists. They are expected to audition and decide on performers for musical presentations. Finally, music directors talk with clergy to decide on music for church services.
Every day, music directors are expected to be able to note differences between sounds as they change tone and volume. They need to articulate ideas and problems.
It is important for music directors to meet with soloists and concertmasters to consider and get ready for performances. They are often called upon to assign and review staff work in such areas as scoring and copying music, and vocal coaching. They also perform administrative tasks such as applying for grants and designing and printing programs and other promotional materials. They are sometimes expected to transcribe musical compositions and melodic lines to adapt them to a particular group, or to generate a particular musical style. Somewhat less frequently, music directors are also expected to use gestures to shape the music being played, communicating desired tempo and other performance aspects.
They also have to be able to study scores to learn the music in detail, and to optimize interpretations And finally, they sometimes have to audition and decide on performers for musical presentations.
Like many other jobs, music directors must be able to take change and lead and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Huntsville include:
- Interpreter. Translate or interpret written, oral, or sign language text into another language for others.
- Music Composer. Write and transcribe musical scores.
- Musician. Play one or more musical instruments in recital, in accompaniment, or as members of an orchestra, band, or other musical group.
- Singer. Sing songs on stage, radio, or motion pictures.
- Writer. Create original written works.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Music Director Training
Oakwood University - Huntsville, AL
Oakwood University, 7000 Adventist Blvd NW, Huntsville, AL 35896. Oakwood University is a small university located in Huntsville, Alabama. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,850 students and an admission rate of 57%. Oakwood University has 3 areas of study related to Music Director. They are:
- Music Theory and Composition, bachelor's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.
- Voice and Opera, bachelor's degree.
- Music Management and Merchandising, bachelor's degree.
John C Calhoun State Community College - Tanner, AL
John C Calhoun State Community College, 6250 U S Highway 31 N, Tanner, AL 35671. John C Calhoun State Community College is a medium sized college located in Tanner, Alabama. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 9,754 students. John C Calhoun State Community College has an associate's degree program in Music, Other Specialties which graduated five students in 2008.
AmSAT Certified Teacher: Certified Alexander Technique Teachers have completed a 3 year, 1600 hour course at an AmSAT certified teacher training center.
For more information, see the American Society for the Alexander Technique website.
LOCATION INFORMATION: Huntsville, Alabama
Huntsville is located in Madison County, Alabama. It has a population of over 176,645, which has grown by 11.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Huntsville, 82, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Huntsville are valued at $44,900 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, 1,004 new homes were constructed in Huntsville, down from 1,558 the previous year.
The top three industries for women in Huntsville are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and construction. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 36.1% of Huntsville residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 12.7%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Huntsville is 7.6%, which is less than Alabama's average of 10.7%.
The percentage of Huntsville residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 55.2%, is more than the national average but less than the state average. Whitesburg Church of God, Whitesburg Church and Maple Grove Church are among the churches located in Huntsville. The most common religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the United Methodist Church and the Catholic Church.
Huntsville is home to the Valley Hill Golf and Country Club and the Lowe Industrial Park as well as John H Steigerwood Field and Milton Frank Stadium. Shopping malls in the area include Madison Plaza Shopping Center, Madison Square Mall Shopping Center and Memorial Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Huntsville can choose from King's Inn, Candlewood Suites and Economy Inn for temporary stays in the area.