School of Music Announces New Entertainment Institute

The Mary Pappert School of Music has launched a new unique interdisciplinary program to provide students with valuable resources and hands-on experiences to learn all aspects of the entertainment industry.

Institute of Entertainment Music and Media Arts LogoThe Institute of Entertainment, Music and Media Arts (IEMMA) program is designed to foster students’ skill sets to ensure they thrive in the always-evolving entertainment field. It offers real-world situations and the chance to work alongside industry leaders in areas like composing, recording, performance, engineering, production and more.

The IEMMA Experience is the institute’s public, on-campus lecture-performance series that features industry professionals. It kicks off Friday, Sept. 20, with legendary voice actor Jeff Bergman—better known as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and the original Gus the Ground Hog—who will share his experiences and humor from 3 to 5 p.m. in the School of Music’s PNC Recital Hall.

“In my work with various artists over the last 30 years, I’ve heard a common lament—‘If I had learned that in school, I would have been better-positioned to start my career,’” says IEMMA Director Thomas Kikta. “IEMMA provides those learning opportunities. Whether it’s in seminar, lecture or real-world projects, our students will be in direct contact with today’s most innovative minds in entertainment.”

IEMMA also offers Sound Stage Sessions, a program through which music technology students can prepare, set up, run and strike recording sessions for the School of Music’s performing ensembles. It simultaneously helps ensemble performers learn how to conduct themselves in a recording studio environment. Guided by Grammy Award-winning sound recording faculty and seasoned sound stage musicians, the students will perform, mix and master recordings to be broadcast, downloaded and streamed.

“This exciting new initiative positions the Mary Pappert School of Music as a national leader in preparing all of our students with an education infused with the most cutting-edge technology available,” says School of Music Dean David Allen Wehr. “Our strong programs in education, therapy, performance, worship arts and contemporary media already make our graduates the most competitive in their fields. IEMMA will only enhance and hone their ability to thrive and adapt in a constantly changing musical environment.”

Provost Dr. David Dausey emphasized IEMMA’s groundbreaking potential. “IEMMA is poised to be a game-changer for our renowned Mary Pappert School of Music and the entertainment, music and media arts industries. For decades, the School of Music has trained students who’ve gone on to become world-premiere leaders in the entertainment industry as well as world class music performers. IEMMA provides the School of Music with the opportunity to capitalize on these relationships to create synergies that benefit the industry, our students and our University simultaneously.”

For more information on IEMMA, visit