Find Your Path

Welcome to the USC Thornton School of Music, where students and faculty are dedicated to the highest artistic standards – and to working collaboratively. The friendships, networks and mentorships developed here enrich careers years into the future. 

We know that successful musicians now need to do so much more than play music. In addition to being virtuoso performers with distinct artistic voices, they need to function as digital-savvy technicians and entrepreneurs. We equip artists with the portfolio of skills they need to thrive. No one career looks like another, and we train students for success in multiple career paths. 

USC Thornton is unique among conservatories and music schools in that almost all genres of music can be found here under one roof. Also, being part of a world class research university gives students countless opportunities to expand their study outside of music. And our location in Los Angeles, one of the great creative capitals of the world, means that students are exposed to abundant opportunities in the music, film, television, video game, theatre, dance and other artistic industries. 

Innovative learning experiences at USC Thornton 

Always innovating, always collaborating

USC Thornton students consistently collaborate across musical mediums within the school, the university and beyond. Watch what unfolded when USC Thornton keyboard studies doctoral student Lenny Hayes partnered with USC Annenberg faculty member Miki Turner in honoring and reimagining a century-old Black gospel hymn.

Opportunities abound

No one career looks like another, and we train students for success in a plethora of professional paths. Read about the career-launching opportunities – Super Bowl anyone? – that Thornton Music Industry program instructor Sophie Reeves affords to her dedicated, capable students.

From students to music professionals in no time

We equip students with the portfolio of skills they need to thrive as performing artists, arts institution leaders, music industry professionals and everything in between. From playing in the orchestra of a Broadway production to debuting at the Metropolitan Opera to performing in dual sections of a symphony, read about the accomplishments of Thornton students and recent alumni.

To learn more about the school and find the path for you, follow the links below. 

This Week @ Thornton

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USC Thornton Viewbook

Learn more about USC Thornton and read some of our favorite stories about students and alumni. You can also download a PDF of our annual Viewbook.


Learn more about the remarkable students, alumni, and faculty at USC Thornton with Spotlights, weekly features about the Thornton community.


Learn about events at USC Thornton, go to our events hub, Thornton/LIVE.

Degrees & Programs

To learn more about our programs, go to the homepage and find the program that is right for you or click “Degrees & Programs” to see an overview.


To learn more about our admission process, go to our How to Apply page. 

Minors & Electives

Regardless of your major or level of experience, we invite you to study and create music with us. 

Don’t miss a beat. Connect with us.