Prof. Dr. Abra K. Bush

David Henry Jacobs Bicentennial Dean Jacobs School

Abra K. Bush is David Henry Jacobs Bicentennial Dean and professor of music in voice at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. She is the school’s first-ever woman dean.

She was previously senior associate dean of institute studies at the Johns Hopkins Peabody Institute.

At the Peabody Institute, one of the nation’s oldest and most celebrated music conservatories, Bush oversaw curriculum and personnel for academic and applied areas including faculty and academic affairs, concert and ensemble operations, learning innovation, and the Arthur Friedheim Music Library and Archive.

In the role of senior associate dean, Bush developed groundbreaking curricula, forged new strategic partnerships, and oversaw the recruitment and hiring of more than 100 preeminent artistic and academic faculty. From 2017 to 2021, she increased underrepresented faculty by more than 65 percent.

Prior to joining Peabody, Bush was the first woman director of the Music Division at The Boston Conservatory, where she developed a strategic vision for the division, established the Master of Music degree in Classical Contemporary Music Performance, and was a member of the Academic Planning Committee for the Boston Conservatory/Berklee merger.

Previous academic appointments have included roles at the University of Rochester, Concordia College, and Kenyon College. She also served as assistant dean of academic affairs at the Eastman School of Music.

Bush earned Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from Oberlin College Conservatory of Music and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from The Ohio State University. She has been an invited presenter at multiple national meetings and conferences of the National Association of Schools of Music, National Association of Teachers of Singing, College Music Society, and Assessment in the Arts. She is a member of the Council of the Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Europe’s culture and education network, reaching over 300 member institutions in 57 countries.

A soprano, Bush made her professional opera debut as Drusilla in L’incoronazione di Poppea at Opera Columbus with Boston Baroque. Her operatic roles encompass works from all periods of opera, including Paix in Les Arts Flourissants, Mrs. McClean in Susannah, Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, and Laurie in The Tender Land. She has delivered numerous recitals, master classes, and oratorio performances across the U.S. and in China.