Begin your musical journey at BHSU

Black Hills State University is proud to be fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music. This means you will learn from excellent instructors in fine facilities who will support your learning through coursework, private instruction, and ensembles – they will go above and beyond to ensure your success. We have nearly one hundred percent placement for our music education majors and numbers have been rising in that area.

The Music Department is housed in Clare and Josef Meier Hall. Music facilities include a beautiful recital hall, private faculty and student studios, fully-equipped practice rooms with pianos, an electronic keyboard lab, large rehearsal rooms, and music classrooms.

The BHSU music program provides the diversity a student wants but the individual attention a student needs. Our growing music department offers majors in Music Composite, and Music Education, as well as a minor in music. Our ensemble offerings include: the Dakota Chamber Orchestra, Concert Choir, Chamber Singers, Northern Hills Chamber Chorale, Community Concert Band, Wind Ensemble, Jazz Band, Roughlock Brass, Pep Band, The BHSU “Beeline” Drumline, and other small groups.

Music program

With strong vocal and piano programs and a growing emphasis on instrumental performance, the BHSU Music program provides the diversity a student wants but the individual attention a student needs. Music students will take such courses as music history, music theory, while taking private lessons. Music education majors take the extra course work to be able to teach in the K-12 environment. Music majors can become professional musicians or work in music related fields, but many choose a teaching career or graduate school to further their talent.

The Music major at BHSU offers
  • Highly talented and caring instructors
  • A variety of music ensembles to choose from and join
  • Opportunities to perform on campus and across the region
  • State of the art music facilities in Meier Hall

Scholarship Opportunity

We offer scholarship money specific to the music department. Perspective students may apply through our online form: www.BHSU.edu/Music-Scholarship.


Ensembles at BHSU

Black Hills State University offers numerous performing groups within the music program. The music program student performance groups give concerts each semester, and a musical is performed in cooperation with the Theater Department each year. Here is a list of the different ensembles at BHSU:

  • “Beeline” Drumline
  • BHSU Community Chorale
  • Dakota Chamber Orchestra
  • Chamber Singers
  • Concert Band
  • Jazz Ensemble
  • Pep Band
  • Student Instrumental Ambassadors
  • Women’s Chorus
  • Musical Theatre

*Current students, please refer to the DegreeWorks Dashboard in MyBHSU to confirm your major requirements.


There are employment opportunities in a variety of sectors:
» Music Accompanist
» Music Business
» Music Librarian
» Music Studio Technician
» Music Studio Technician
» Studio Teaching
» Teaching Music


The “Beeline” Drumline is a group of percussion instruments that perform at many athletic events and other events throughout the year. Learn new techniques and broadens your musical experience by joining the Beeline.



Former student Drew Lerdal is a guitarist and composer in Minneapolis who scores music for film, television, and commercials. Here is his IMDB entry: IMDB Drew Lerdal


Jennifer Loftin, a recent graduate, is the high school choral director in Sturgis, SD. She also directs the music in the community theater in Sturgis.


Jesse Dunaway, a recent graduate, is now an award winning composer who is having success with performances of his works. He is the high school choral director in Chamberlain, SD.



“It’s (Music Dept.) big enough to feel like an adventure and small enough to feel like home.” Ashley Lecholat


“The generosity and genuine interest in helping students become the best musicians they can be is what ultimately drew me to BHSU.” Raquel Neesham

Contact Info

Jonathan Nero
Meier Hall 126 Map
Phone: 605-642-6628

Black Hills State University
1200 University St. Unit 9003
Spearfish, SD, USA 57799-9003