about pmd


Preparatory Music is a community school for young musicians, located on the beautiful campus of Holy Names University in Oakland, CA. Prep Music offers private instruction on ten instruments: violin, viola, cello, harp, guitar, piano, flute, oboe, recorder, drums, and voice. In addition, youth orchestras, group string and piano classes are offered, as well as numerous concerts and large musical events.

In addition to studio recitals provided for students by each instructor, Prep Music hosts unique department-wide concerts such as Friday Evening and Sunday Afternoon Recitals, a Solo & Ensemble Festival, a Concerto Competition and subsequent Concerto Festival, Pops Concert, Orchestras & Ensembles Concerts, and Piano Ensemble Concerts.

Founded in 1968 by Sister Therese-Cecile Murphy, a Holy Names College music professor and early advocate of Suzuki music education. Preparatory Music is one of the first Suzuki centers on the West coast, and has remained a recognized institution for both Suzuki and Traditional music instruction.


The mission of the preparatory music department is to develop the musical potential in young people by creating a nurturing environment where students, teachers and parents together foster a life-long appreciation of music.

We believe that music:

  • contributes to the total development of the child
  • study enhances all learning, develops sensitivity, discipline and character
  • prepares students to make meaningful contributions in the world

The potential of every child is unlimited.

—Shinichi Suzuki

Grace Curcio

“I studied music at the Preparatory Music Department, and along the way, my dedicated teachers taught me how to live a full, happy life. To this day I enjoy close friendships with my childhood duet partners and former teachers. The valuable lessons I learned at PMD- both musical and beyond – continue to enhance all areas of my life.”

Grace Curcio / Alumni
Colleen Moore

“The musical education I received at the Preparatory Music Department continues to enrich my life every day. I hold dear to my heart the incredible faculty members, wonderful musical performances, and lifelong friends I made at PMD.”

Colleen Moore / Alumni

“This ensemble class was important to me as a musician and as a person, because I not only improved as a pianist, but I also made many friends and learned valuable skills that I could use in other places than music, such as working with other people. I feel very grateful that I had the opportunity to use the Clavinovas for piano ensemble, and I really hope that other musicians can use them and benefit the same way I did.”

Michelle / Student
Phone: (510) 436-1224
Phone HNU: (510) 436-1000
3500 Mountain Blvd
Oakland, CA 94619
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