If you are hoping to attend a performing arts college in New York state or New York City, this article will get you one step closer to that goal. I have compiled a comprehensive list of the over 70 universities and conservatory programs in New York that offer performing arts degrees (Bachelor’s or higher). I have also chosen the top 3 performing arts schools in New York.
How should you use this list?
This list should be a starting point for your research into finding the right performing arts college for you. If you need assistance figuring out What College Should You Go To? How to Choose a College, click the link to another PrepScholar article. When deciding on a performing arts college, you should consider at a minimum:
- Are you looking for a conservatory or a program at a four-year university with other non-art related majors?
- Do you want to be in a New York City or a smaller town?
- Do you want a large program or a smaller program?
- Are you interested in attending a certain type of religious college?
- What kind of degree do you want? BA, BM or BFA? MA or MFA?
- How much money do you want to spend on your degree? Can you get financial aid at the school?
In this article, I list every school in alphabetical order. Each school offers different performing arts degrees and different curriculums for the same type of degree, so I encourage you to click on the links to each school to figure out if their program is right for you.
List of Performing Arts School in California in Alphabetical Order
- American Academy of Dramatic Arts: New York, NY
- Adelphi University: Garden City, NY
- Bard College: Annandale-on-Hudson, New York
- Barnard College: New York, NY
- Canisius College: Buffalo, NY
- City University of New York-Baruch College: New York, NY
- City University of New York-Brooklyn College: Brooklyn, NY
- City University of New York-City College: New York, NY
- City University of New York-College of Staten Island: Staten Island, NY
- City University of New York-Hunter College: New York, NY
- City University of New York-Lehman College: Bronx, NY
- City University of New York-Queens College Aaron Copland School of Music: Flushing, NY
- City University of New York-York College: Jamaica, NY
- City University of New York-Graduate Center: New York, NY
- Colgate University: Hamilton, NY
- College of St. Rose: Albany, NY
- Columbia University: New York, NY
- Cornell University: Ithaca, NY
- Dowling College: Oakdale, NY
- Elmira College: Elmira, NY
- Five Towns College: Dix Hills, NY
- Fordham University: Bronx, NY
- Hamilton College: Clinton, NY
- Hartwick College: Oneonta, NY
- Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion: New York, NY
- Hobart and William Smith Colleges: Geneva, NY
- Hofstra University: Hempstead, NY
- Houghton College: Houghton, NY
- Ithaca College: Ithaca, NY
- Jewish Theological Seminary-H.L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music: New York, NY
- The Juilliard School: New York, NY
- Long Island University-Brooklyn: Brooklyn, NY
- Long Island University-C.W. Post: Brookville, NY
- Manhattan School of Music: New York, NY
- Manhattanville College: Purchase, NY
- Molloy College: Rockville Centre, NY
- Marymount Manhattan College: New York, NY
- Nazareth College of Rochester: Rochester, NY
- The New School-Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts: New York, NY
- The New School-Mannes College of Music: New York, NY
- The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music: New York, NY
- New York University (NYU): New York, NY
- Niagara University: Outside of Niagara Falls, NY
- Nyack College: New York, NY
- Pratt Institute: New York, NY
- Roberts Wesleyan College: Rochester, NY
- SUNY - Albany: Albany, NY
- SUNY - Binghamton University: Binghamton, NY
- SUNY - Buffalo State College: Buffalo, NY
- SUNY-College at Oneonta: Oneonta, NY
- SUNY-Fredonia: Fredonia, NY
- SUNY-Geneseo: Geneseo, NY
- SUNY-New Paltz: New Paltz, NY
- SUNY-Oswego: Oswego, NY
- SUNY-Plattsburgh: Plattsburgh, NY
- SUNY-Potsdam Crane School of Music: Potsdam, NY
- SUNY-Purchase: Purchase, NY
- SUNY-Stony Brook: Stony Brook, NY
- SUNY-University at Buffalo: Buffalo, NY
- Sarah Lawrence College: Yonkers, NY
- Skidmore College: Saratoga Springs, NY
- St. Bonaventure University: St. Bonaventure, NY
- St. Lawrence College: Canton, NY
- Syracuse University: Syracuse, NY
- University of Rochester Eastman School of Music: Rochester, NY
- Vassar College: Poughkeepsie, NY
- Wagner College: Staten Island, NY
- Wells College: Aurora, NY
- Yeshiva University Belz School of Jewish Music: New York, NY
Top 3 Performing Arts Colleges in New York
Location: New York, NY
Tuition for Academic Year: $39,720
- BFA or Diploma in Dance
- BFA, MFA, or Diploma in Acting
- Fellowship in Playwriting
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Brass
- MM, DMA or Diploma in Collaborative Piano
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Composition
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Guitar
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Harp
- MM, DMA or Diploma in Historical Performance
- BM, MM, or Diploma in Jazz Studies
- MM or Diploma in Orchestral Conducting
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Organ
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Percussion
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Piano
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Strings
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Voice/Opera
- BM, MM, DMA or Diploma in Woodwinds
- Undoubtedly considered one of the best, if not THE best, performing arts school in the country, recognized by entertainment magazines such as The Hollywood Reporter for the Drama and Music programs and Backstage Magazine for the Dance program.
- Conservatory-style education in New York City, one of the art centers of the world.
- Very small class sizes with only around 500 undergraduate students, lots of personal attention.
- Extremely competitive admission process that includes an audition, Juilliard only admits about 6.7% of applicants.
- The school's alumni have a long list of accomplishments including "more than 105 Grammy Awards, 62 Tony Awards, 47 Emmy Awards, 26 Bessie Awards, 24 Academy Awards, 16 Pulitzer Prizes, and 12 National Medals for the Arts."
Location: New York, NY
Tuition for Academic Year: $49,962
- BFA and MFA in Dance
- BFA or MFA in Acting or BA in Theatre Studies
- BA, MA, or Ph.D. in Performance Studies
- BM, Music Performance
- MM, Jazz Instrumental Performance
- BM, Music Theory and Composition
- MM, Music Theory and Composition
- MM, Music Theory and Composition: Scoring for Film and Multimedia
- MM, Music Theory and Composition: Songwriting
- BM, Piano Performance
- MM, Piano Performance
- BM, Vocal Performance: Classical Voice
- MM, Vocal Performance: Classical Voice
- MM, Vocal Performance: Classical Voice/Post-Master’s Advanced Certificate, Vocal Pedagogy
- Post-Master’s Advanced Certificate, Vocal Pedagogy
- PhD, Music Performance and Composition: For Performers
- PhD, Music Performance and Composition: For Chamber Performers
- BM, Instrumental Performance
- BM, Music/MA, Music Education, All Grades: Initial Certification
- MM, Instrumental Performance
- Consistently ranked in the top 5 drama schools in the country, according to The Hollywood Reporter, as well as the top 10 music schools in the world.
- Conservatory-style training, but at a four-year university, providing you with a small artistic community as well as a large university experience.
- Located in New York City, NYU has integrated itself with New York's existing artistic community (for instance, at Tisch in the Drama Program, students attend existing New York acting studios for their specialized classes).
- Decently competitive admission process, with a 35% admission rate overall for NYU. Each program has a slightly lower acceptance rate, but it varies by program.
- Arguably has the most notable alumni of any performing arts school in the country including Elmer Bernstein, Alan Menken, Andy Samberg, Felicity Huffman, Alec Baldwin, Idina Menzel.
Location: New York, NY
Tuition for Academic Year: $42,000
- Chamber Music
- Contemporary Performance
- Jazz Arts
- Keyboard Skills
- Music Education & Performance Dual Degree
- Music History
- Musical Theatre
- Opera Studies
- Orchestral Performance Program
- Pinchas Zukerman Performance Program
- Strings & Harp
- Theory & Skills
- Ranked one of the top 25 music schools in the world by The Hollywood Reporter.
- Like the other two schools, located in New York City.
- 2nd best music program in the city behind Juilliard, whose former campus it occupies.
- The smallest of the top schools with a total of 372 undergraduate students.
- Offering many opportunities to perform with "700 performances per year, including fully-staged operas, orchestral concerts, student and faculty recitals, master classes, jazz concerts on-site and at Jazz at Lincoln Center."
- Great facilities with over 100 practice rooms and 9 performance facilities.
- An incredibly long list of notable alumni including Max Roach and Harry Conick, Jr.
Learn more about acing the SAT and ACT to help you get into a performing arts college:
If you are interested in looking for performing arts colleges in other locations:
- List of Performing Arts Colleges in California (Coming Soon!)
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As an SAT/ACT tutor, Dora has guided many students to test prep success. She loves watching students succeed and is committed to helping you get there. Dora received a full-tuition merit based scholarship to University of Southern California. She graduated magna cum laude and scored in the 99th percentile on the ACT. She is also passionate about acting, writing, and photography.