While furnishing a rich and diverse exposure to the history and appreciation of the field, our music course offerings start at a basic level and work up to advanced courses in theory, composition, and performance, with field trips to concerts around Virginia, and the option of a music minor. You can also make music: in recent years our Hampden-Sydney College Chorus has performed at Sweet Briar, Randolph, and Salem College and toured out of state, performing at the National Cathedral and in France, England, and Italy. The student-run a cappella group, The Acousticals, is a favorite at Virginia colleges and Hampden-Sydney events on and off campus.

"How Can I Keep from Singing?" | Performed by the H-SC Alumni/Student Chorus

Minor in Music

The requirements for a minor in Music are 15 credit hours from the following: Music 101, 103, 121, 211, 212, 216, 217, 218, 221, 245, 246, 312, 321, 335, 341, 342, 360, 391, Physics 135, Theatre 210. Of these, Music 221 is required, as is one of the listed 300-level courses. (Music 121 is a pre-requisite for Music 221; students with the requisite knowledge may place directly into Music 221 with instructor permission.) No more than six hours of courses at the 100-level may be applied towards the Music minor.

Three credits accumulated from the following one-credit performance courses may substitute for one of the listed three-credit courses (all performance credits must represent cumulative work within a single instrument (or voice); a) Music 250-253 or 350-353, b) Music 254-357, c) Music 270-273 or 370-373, d) private instrumental or vocal instruction at Longwood University, or e) music ensemble participation through the Cooperative Agreement with Longwood University.

Students interested in taking private music lessons for academic credit can do so at Longwood University by enrolling in Music 155/156, 255/256 through the Longwood University Cooperative Program. Students are encouraged to see Professor von Rueden for details.

Updated 8/30/22

Fine Arts Courses

Ensembles and Clubs

H-SC Chorus

The H-SC Chorus is one of the oldest official student organizations on campus. Its roots can be traced back to the 1820s. Membership is open to any student interested in choral singing.


The Acousticals puts a fun twist on performing a capella music. The group performs "Rockapella"-style music using just their voices as instruments in a style all their own at H-SC. This exciting, goofy group performs vocal spectacles from the genres of hip-hop, country, pop, rap, contemporary, and classics-using beat boxing, face melting guitar fills. Auditions are held at the beginning of each semester, so if you love to sing and you have a naturally energetic disposition, this group is for you.

Instrumental Ensembles

Students interested in participating in an instrumental ensemble for academic credit may enroll in Hampden-Sydney’s Instrumental Ensemble (MUSI 254 sequence). This course is currently offered every Spring semester. Membership is open to any student able to read sheet music. If you are interested in enrolling, or have any questions, please contact Professor von Rueden for more information.

Students may also participate in instrumental ensembles at Longwood University for credit through the Longwood University Cooperative Program. Instrumental ensembles at Longwood include Wind Symphony, Percussion Ensemble, Flute Ensemble, and Jazz Ensemble.

If interested in ensembles at Longwood, contact Kevin Callahan, Wind Symphony Director at 434-395-2628 or callihankm@longwood.edu.


  • If you are interested in getting involved with the Music Production & Performance Club, a group for solo and collaborative music-making with club-owned instruments and technology, please contact Dr. Szabo (vszabo@hsc.edu). 
  • If you are interested in getting involved with Tiger Radio, H-SC’s streaming radio station, please contact Dr. Szabo (vszabo@hsc.edu).
  • If you are interested in the H-SC Pep Band, please contact Dr. Wolyniak (mwolyniak@hsc.edu).   

Private Music Lessons

Our instructors currently offer private music lessons in voice, piano, guitar, bass guitar, violin, viola, clarinet, saxophone, and traditional Japanese instruments and practices in kotsuzumi, ôtsuzumi, taiko, and utai. These lessons are typically taught once a week for 30 minutes, scheduled individually, and count for 1 academic credit toward graduation for each semester that you enroll. There is an additional fee of $355 to take part in the program. Additional information can be found on TigerWeb, under course MUSI 270.

Students interested in taking private music lessons in flute, percussion, trumpet, French horn, or low brass for academic credit can do so at Longwood University by enrolling through the Longwood University Cooperative Program. The lessons cost $355 per semester, take place weekly, last a half hour, and count for one credit. Interested students should contact immediately the professor who teaches the instrument they would like to learn. If the professor can take you on as a student, you will need to fill out paperwork with the H-SC registrar.

If you have any questions about instrument lessons, contact Professor von Rueden for more information.                    

Private Music Lessons

Facilities and Resources

The Viar-Christ Center for the Arts was newly renovated to provide facilities for Music and Visual Arts. The Center, located in Brinkley Hall, houses eight pianos in classrooms, offices, and practice spaces and includes:

  • Digital Keyboard Laboratory with Clavinova/iMac stations
  • Seminar and Lecture Classrooms
  • Music Workshop
  • Choral Library
  • Three practice rooms
  • Instrument storage lockers
  • Choral rehearsal and lecture space

Students who wish to receive an instrument storage locker should stop by the office of Beverly Hines (bhines@hsc.edu), Fine Arts Administrative Assistant, Mon-Fri between 10am-12pm in Brinkley 008 to sign an agreement form.

Any student may use an available practice room while Brinkley Hall is open, Mon-Fri 8am-10pm. Students who wish to access the practice rooms when the building is closed may request access by contacting Dr. Szabo at vszabo@hsc.edu or 434-223-6635.

Students who wish to access the Digital Keyboard Laboratory may request access by contacting Dr. Szabo at vszabo@hsc.edu or 434-223-6635.

Brinkley Hall

Music Department Professors

The Music Department is a part of the Fine Arts Department at Hampden-Sydney.

Fine Arts Department Professors


H-SC Music Series

Hampden-Sydney is commited to the intellectual and cultural enrichment of the Southside community and presents FREE public concerts throughout the academic year.

Music Series

Fine Arts Events

All Hampden-Sydney College music, theatre, and visual arts events are FREE and open to the public.

Music Events

David King III '21

COVID-19 may have cancelled his summer internship plans, but David King III ’21 turned his disappointment into the trip of a lifetime.

David King '21