Music Industry | Capital University, Columbus Ohio


Music Industry

  • Music Industry
  • In this section..

    • Degrees
      Bachelor of Music in Music Industry


      The Music Industry is an exciting field, providing a multitude of ways to build a rewarding career. Life in the music industry is just not performing, teaching or being a recording engineer – for certain, it is all of those, but also the world of management, music product sales and manufacturing, arts administration, publishing, producing and many other possibilities. The list grows larger when you find ways in which to combine these areas into your life as a music professional.


      Capital’s Bachelor of Music in Music Industry provides the unique opportunity to study music with a major instrument combined with a minor (or, with just a few more hours, a secondary major) in disciplines outside of music, often including areas such as business, management or public relations. The distinctive element of our BM in Music Industry is this: you will be a music major with a secondary emphasis – if you have researched other schools, you will find our arrangement to be rather unique, as most places treat the music industry student differently in terms of music study, participation in ensembles, etc. This does not impact the ability to engage in one the most important facets of the degree – the professional internship, completed locally or off-campus in any location where a viable internship experience is approved.


      Capital’s BM Music Industry graduates are successful in all areas of the music business – from performing with international acts to managing well-known artists in every genre’…from working in arts organizations to music production houses. The music business is a multi-billion dollar industry and you can be a part of it, just like so many of our successful graduates that are making a living in Columbus, but also in the major industry centers of New York, Los Angeles, Nashville and other major metropolitan areas. Your professors will also be your mentors and business contacts, as so many of our faculty are universally known as leaders in all aspects of the music industry.


      We realize that your goals may change as you move through college. Therefore, you will find that at Capital the first year in music is a generic experience, allowing program changes to be made easily and without losing credits. Again, this is a unique element to our program. We encourage you to visit the campus, meet students and faculty, visit classes and become familiar with Columbus, a vibrant and growing metropolitan area of over two million people.

      We encourage you to visit the campus, meet students and faculty, visit classes and become familiar with Columbus. Please feel free to contact US directly with questions that you or your parents have about our program, or reach out to our Conservatory admissions counselor, Summer Slusher, for audition information or to schedule a campus visit to meet our faculty, schedule a lesson, visit classes and to hear our groups. Summer’s email is Program director Robert Breithaupt may be contact at

      Conservatory Admission and Audition Requirements

      Admission into this program will require you to complete a two-part process to gain admittance to both Capital University and the Conservatory of Music.


    • Faculty 

      Robert Breithaupt

      Robert Breithaupt is professor of music and department chair of Performance Studies at Capital, and one of today's foremost leaders in percussion education. He was co-founder of the Summer Drum Set Workshops, author of the textbook, The Complete Percussionist, and the DVD, Snare Drum Basics. He presents at clinics and seminars around the world. He was past president of the Percussive Arts Society and currently serves as vice president of the Jazz Education Network (JEN).

      During more than 30 years of concerts and tours, Breithaupt has performed with jazz talents like Terry Gibbs, John Pizzarelli, Kirk Whalum and many more. He regularly performs with many of the nation's finest orchestras along with trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling. He was executive director of the Jazz Arts Group of Columbus from 2001 to 2012 and has served as the drummer of JAG's Columbus Jazz Orchestra since 1980. In addition to being the recipient of numerous awards, Breithaupt is an artist/endorser and consultant for the Yamaha Corporation, Sabian Ltd. and Remo Inc. and has his own signature drum line.  

      Read Bio   

      Red Nienkirchen

      An adjunct instructor at Capital since 2009, Red Nienkirchen has enjoyed a successful career of more than 30 years as a producer, composer and arranger in New York City. He has worked with numerous advertising agencies, commercial music houses, television networks, film production companies and record companies, and produced countless studio sessions with the best performers in New York City. As the industry demanded, he scored and recorded styles, from commercial and pop to jazz, rock and classical, in a variety of instrumental settings, from small ensembles to orchestras.

      Nienkirchen's most recent accomplishment is working with Big Idea Entertainment, LLC, an American Christian animation production company best known for its computer-animated Veggie Tales series, to compose and orchestrate the music for the new movie, Celery Night Fever.

    • Living the Dream

      As a 2001 graduate of the Music Industry program, Matt Billingslea has always been able to keep his eye on the dream. Thanks to plenty of hard work and what he refers to as an interesting combination of "hustle and luck," he spent three years touring with multi-Grammy winners Lady Antebellum. He also toured with multi-platinum country star Gary Allan. Today he performs to sold-out crowds all over the world as the drummer for Grammy winner and international superstar Taylor Swift. And gives the occasional master class at Capital.

      "At Capital, I benefitted from the broad foundation they gave me as far as knowledge in theory, and also from teachers who had a lot of experience and wisdom," he said. He also recalls the summer he spent studying recording techniques at the Recording Workshop. His advice to aspiring musicians is pretty straightforward: "Don't be discouraged, but be prepared for the ups and downs. If you want it bad enough, you can find a way."