About the Hayes School of Music


The Hayes School of Music at Appalachian State University is nestled at the base of Howard's Knob in downtown Boone, NC (year-round pop. 15,000), a small town which thrives as one of the Southeast's premier tourism and outdoor recreation destinations. The nearby Blue Ridge Parkway and Pisgah National Forest provide a beautiful natural setting with unlimited possibilities for outdoor adventure.

Named for Mariam Cannon Hayes, the Hayes School of Music enrolls more than 475 students pursuing careers in the following fields: Music Education, Music Performance, Music Therapy, Sacred Music, Composition and Theory, Music Industry Studies, Jazz Studies, Graduate Music Studies. These programs are supported by more than 50 faculty, numerous performance ensembles, and modern academic and performance facilities. Click here for a  campus map of the Hayes School of Music.

Mission Statement

Mission Statement

The Hayes School of Music cultivates knowledge, skills, and human qualities related to teaching, creation, performance, business, appreciation, and therapeutic use of music. It serves as a vibrant musical center for the campus and the region.

Values Statement

Values Statement

 The Hayes School of Music fosters a caring, respectful, and inclusive community that focuses on individual student growth and development in the pursuit of musical artistry, academic excellence, and professional success.

Fast Facts About the Hayes School of Music

Noted for quality instruction by national and internationally recognized faculty musicians, Appalachian State University Hayes School of Music offers four undergraduate degree programs and three graduate level programs, as well as:

  • A music school of nearly 500 students who pursue and attain careers in music education, music business, music merchandising, sound recording technology, music therapy, sacred music, composition, performance and many academic fields of music
  • A faculty of more than 60 professionals, most with doctorates, whose research and performances reach throughout the United States and the world
  • A $10 million endowment that supports music students, faculty and all areas of musical endeavors
  • A musicianship-based scholarship program that supports more than 25 percent of the Hayes School of Music's student body
  • An employment and graduate school placement record of approximately 90%
  • A multi-million dollar recording studio including four independent control rooms, 13 edit stations, three recording spaces and a large and diverse collection of professional audio equipment, including a new state-of-the art Solid State Logic control board
  • A nationally recognized music therapy program
  • 10 large, classically oriented choral and instrumental ensembles
  • More than a dozen specialty ensembles, including two instrumental jazz ensembles, a vocal jazz ensemble, the Steely Pan Band, Middle East Ensemble, Collegium Musicum (early music), and Gospel Choir
  • A Balinese gamelan
  • Alexander Technique study for all Performance majors
  • International study and performance opportunities in Ireland, China, Austria, Cuba and South Africa
  • Out-of-state tuition that is less than many universities' in-state tuition

Alumni Spotlights

Appalachian alum Grant Smith takes a bite of the Big Apple’s jazz scene

Grant Smith ’16, an Appalachian State University alumnus and trombonist from Charlotte, is navigating the New York City jazz scene while pursuing a Master of Music in jazz performance at the Manhattan School of Music (MSM). Smith graduated from Appalachian’s Hayes... Read more

Grammy Music Educator Award goes to N.C. high school teacher

2016 Grammy Music Educator Award goes to HSoM Music Education alumnus Phillip Riggs, who teaches at North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, Durham, North Carolina. Riggs is currently featured in Appalachian Magazine. Read more

Ebenezer choir joined the Jacksonville Children's Chorus

Artistic and Executive Director Darren Dailey (left) and Conductor Susanne Dailey (right) of the Jacksonville Children's Chorus with Music Director Dr. Tony McNeill (center) of the Historic Ebenezer Baptist Church Choir of Atlanta, Ga. The Ebenezer choir joined the Jacksonville Children's... Read more

Michael Alvarado '10 performs on Good Morning America

Michael Alvarado '10 and his wife, who make up UsTheDuo, performed on Good Morning America Feb. 20, 2014. The ABC News blog has the full story and videos. Read more

Networking is key to success, says producer Bobby Sain

By Linda Coutant Talent may get you so far, but networking and hard work are what really breed success, according to Bobby Sain '10 of New York City. And since graduating from Appalachian State University's Hayes School of Music, Sain has had plenty of success. He raised $3.5 million as an... Read more

HSoM flute performance alumna Katie Grunwald was recently hired as Major Gifts and Circles Assistant for the Washington National Opera

Read the full story on the National Repertory Orchestra site at http://www.nromusic.com/2013/alumni-spotlight-katie-grunwald/. Read more

A Grad’s Musical Journey — Trumpet to Opera to Acclaimed New York Polyphony

Craig Phillips ’93, second from left, with the vocal quartet New York Polyphony By Elisabeth Wall Craig Phillips '93 is the bass singer with New York Polyphony, a men's early music quartet. (Polyphony, as described by one of the singers, literally means "many sounds," but it's... Read more

Appalachian Today- Duncan Boatright, music

When Duncan Boatright '12 plays music, he's not moved so much by the artistry of sound, but rather the mechanics behind each chord. "I've always had an interest in computers and math, and music theory is like that – it's the mechanical side of music. It makes it cooler in my mind to see a... Read more

Scoring High on Video Games

By David MenconiJason Graves ’96 is a master at scoring video games, literally.A composition graduate, Graves has composed musical scores for more than 80 computer games over the past eight years, including “Star Trek” and “Arthur and the Invisibles.” His score for... Read more

‘The Climb’ Up the Charts

By Jane NicholsonJon Mabe ’93 jokes that he’s a 16-year overnight success. He co-wrote the hit single “The Climb,” recorded by Miley Cyrus in 2009.The song has sold more than two million copies in the United States, has been a success in Australia, New Zealand, Britain and... Read more