Classical crisis? Study shows 86% of US music teachers are white

Classical crisis? Study shows 86% of US music teachers are white


norman lebrecht

December 21, 2015

A revealing survey by the University of Maryland exposes a discrepancy between would-be musicians and the people who teach them how to play.

The first large-scale study of the demographic profiles of prospective music teachers indicates that the overwhelming majority of music teacher licensure candidates are white.

Using data from the years 2008-2012, the survey shows that 86 per cent of the applicants registered as being white. Of the rest, 7 percent were black and below 2 percent each were Hispanic or Asian.

More details here.

A striking exception


  • Snibor says:

    So what is the problem……………..?

  • CDH says:

    Well, there us no shortage of women as a percentage of teachers to complains about, so race is the next best thing.

  • Alvaro Mendizabal says:

    Yes A-#*]es, RACE. Also to note, is that 99% of classical music administrators are also white.

    The LAO conference is less diverse than a Donald Trump campaign speech…

  • Malcolm Dann says:

    That’s your idea of a crisis? The percentages are roughly reflective of the population overall.
    Where’s the problem/

  • Marg says:

    My guess is 86% of teachers across all subjects are white. As with others, what’s the problem?

  • Peter says:

    90% of elementary school teachers are female. CRISIS!!!
    Considering that classical music was up until about 1900 exclusively European, with a few emerging cells in the New World, this doesn’t seem too strange.
    What is great, is actually how the Asian cultures have in the 20th century adopted western classical music as a universal and highest aspiration of humanity.
    Other cultures didn’t care much. So be it. Not necessarily a big problem.
    The Afro-Americans had their own musical culture, and have developed greatly on it .
    Jazz has become another wonderful cultural asset all over the world.
    Actually Jazz is the one and only big cultural achievement of the US that was not imported.

  • Bruce says:

    This is not news. It has been like this forever.

  • Daniel F. says:

    “I’m shocked…”—-Peter Lore (in “Casablanca”)