Music Theory

A number of electives in Music Theory are offered on a regular basis.  They include:

Music 110:  Introduction to the Elements of Music.
Professor Richard Lalli.
A practical and humanistic introduction to the fundamental principles of musical language (notation, rhythm, scales, keys, melodies, chords, cadences). Emphasis on writing, analysis, singing and dictation. Intended for students who have no music reading ability.

Music 210:  Elementary Studies in Analysis & Composition I.
Professor Richard Cohn.
Practical investigation of the basic principles of tonal harmony, counterpoint, and composition through exercises in analysis, motivic development, phrase rhythm, texture, form, performance, and model composition. Recommended to be taken concurrently with MUSI 218a or b or 219a or b. Admission by the music theory placement test, given on or before the first day of classes. To be followed by MUSI 211a or b.

Music 211:  Elementary Studies in Analysis & Composition II
Professor Patrick McCreless.
Continuation of MUSI 210a or b. Investigation of further applications in tonal harmony, counterpoint, and composition through exercises in analysis, motivic development, phrase rhythm, texture, form, performance, and model composition. Recommended to be taken concurrently with MUSI 218a or b or 219a or b. Admission after MUSI 210a or b or by the music theory placement test, given on or before the first day of classes.

Music 307:  Jazz Harmony.
Professor Brian Kane
An intensive study of the language of jazz, with a focus on jazz harmonies, scale-chord relationships, improvisational syntax, reharmonization, and transcription. Students analyze and transcribe solos, write model compositions, and acquire basic jazz piano skills. Prerequisites: MUSI 211a or b and 219a or b.

Music 343:  Music Cognition.
Professor Ian Quinn.
A survey of historical and current approaches to questions about the perception and cognition of music. Topics include psychoacoustics; the cognitive neuroscience of music; relationships between music and language; the nature of musical knowledge; and debates about aesthetics, evolutionary psychology, and musical universals.

Music 426:  Chamber Music of Robert Schumann.
Professor Michael Friedmann.
A study of selected chamber works by Schumann, coupling analytical research with practical performance issues. Advanced violinists, violists, cellists, clarinetists, oboists, hornists, and pianists admitted by audition.

Music 442:  Rhythm, Meter, and Musical Time.
Professor Richard Cohn.
Analytical models of rhythm and meter and their applications to nineteenth- and twentieth-century Western classical repertory (Beethoven, Brahms, Dvorák, Bartók, Reich), with extensions to jazz and to genres from Ghana, India, Indonesia, and southeastern Europe.

Music 463:  Arrangement and Transcription.
Professor Daniel Harrison.
Techniques of arrangement, transcription, and recomposition from the sixteenth century to the present, studied from analytical, historical, and compositional perspectives.

Music 469:  The Music of Dimitri Shostakovich.
Professor Patrick McCreless.
An examination of the works of Shostakovich, including analytical studies and consideration of cultural background, with attention to the composer’s position in twentieth-century music.