San Francisco Conservatory of Music

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San Francisco Conservatory of Music
San Francisco Conservatory of Music Building.jpg
Former name
Ada Clement Piano School
TypePrivate music school
FoundersAda Clement, Lillian Hodgehead
AccreditationWestern Association of Schools and Colleges
Endowment43,498,000[citation needed]
PresidentDavid H. Stull
DeanJonas Wright
Students480 (2021)[1]
50 Oak Street
, ,

Coordinates: 37°46′32″N 122°25′13″W / 37.77556°N 122.42028°W / 37.77556; -122.42028
Colors   Raspberry and gold [2]

The San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) is a private music school in San Francisco, California. As of 2021, it had 480 students.[1]


The San Francisco Conservatory of Music was founded in 1917 by Ada Clement and Lillian Hodghead as the Ada Clement Piano School.[citation needed] Several years after its founding, the name changed to the Ada Clement Music School, and then in 1923 to the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. In 1956 the Conservatory moved from Sacramento Street to 1201 Ortega Street, the home of a former infant shelter. It resided there for fifty years, before moving to its next location at 50 Oak Street in 2006.[citation needed]

In 2020, the SFCM added the new Bowes Center at 200 Van Ness Avenue (across from Davies Symphony Hall), a 12-story building that includes dorms (eight floors) with acoustic insulation for 400 of its students, 27 rent-controlled apartments for residents of the older building that was replaced by the construction, and some public performing spaces, including a penthouse concert room with views towards the north and west.[3][1] The Bowes Center's $200 million cost was largely funded by donors, including $46.4 million from the William K. Bowes, Jr. Foundation.[4][1] The San Francisco Chronicle's architecture critic John King characterized the building's design as "[pushing] against the strict rules of the historic district but [respecting] the air of gravitas. For starters, the building is skinned in translucent glass that conceals insulation and the structural frame — a touch that adds a milky visual depth ..."[1] As of 2021, the Bowes Center was envisaged to fully open to the public in February 2022.[1]


  • Ada Clement and Lillian Hodghead, 1917–1925
  • Ernest Bloch, 1925–1930
  • Ada Clement and Lillian Hodghead, 1930–1951
  • Albert Elkus, 1951–1957
  • Robin Laufer, 1957–1966
  • Milton Salkind, 1966–1990
  • Stephen Brown, 1990–1991
  • Milton Salkind (Acting President), 1991–1992
  • Colin Murdoch, 1992–2013
  • David Stull, 2013–present

Notable faculty[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f King, John (November 21, 2021). "S.F.'s Civic Center has a new landmark — and it shows how the district should evolve". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved January 16, 2022.
  2. ^ "SFCM Brand Guide" (PDF). San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
  3. ^ "The Bowes center".
  4. ^ "San Francisco Conservatory of Music Gets $46 Million Gift". The New York Times. April 25, 2018. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 10, 2018.
  5. ^ "Deborah Voigt Joins San Francisco Conservatory of Music Faculty".
  6. ^ Christophe Huss (August 26, 2006). "Léopold Simoneau (1916–2006) – Mozart rappelle les siens". Le Devoir (in French). Dans les années soixante-dix, il enseigna le chant au San Francisco Conservatory of Music et à l'école des beaux-arts de Banff, avant de s'installer à Victoria, où il fonda, en 1982, avec son épouse Pierrette Alarie, le Canada Opera Piccola destiné à la formation des jeunes chanteurs canadiens.

External links[edit]