The programs offered by the Composition Department at the University of Oregon School of Music and Dance are designed for students with a talent for and strong interest in composing music in a contemporary idiom. Students whose primary interest is in jazz, popular, or commercial music may find that choosing the Composition Major may not fulfill their needs.
Undergraduate composition studies normally begin in the sophomore year, after students have completed Music Theory I, Aural Skills I, and Keyboard Skills I. Those wishing to take Composition I are expected to have some original music properly notated to show to the composition faculty before being admitted to the composition program.
The School of Music and Dance offers degrees in composition at all levels:
Bachelor of Music in Composition
Master of Music in Composition
Doctor of Philosophy in Music Composition
Doctor of Musical Arts in Composition
Students wishing a broader education while majoring in music with a focus in composition should consider the Bachelor of Science or the Bachelor of Arts degrees.
A full range of graduate studies in composition is available through such programs as the master of music, doctor of musical arts, and doctor of philosophy degrees. The general purposes of these programs are to advance ability in composing artistic music, to provide guidance and facilities for composing, and to encourage opportunities for public performances of new works. Compositional studies are available in private sessions focused on individual interests and needs and in seminars and small classes in which composers meet to explore mutual concerns.
Several kinds of scholarships and teaching fellowships are available to graduate students in composition. The Ruth Lorraine Close Musical Fellows awards are especially addressed to composers. Each year several of these scholarships are awarded. Three professional composers, each with a substantial reputation, and an eminent composer of electronic music, comprise the composition faculty. Together they represent well a diversity of current artistic styles.
The School of Music offers three courses of study involving music technology:
Bachelor of Science with a Music Technology Option
Master of Music in Intermedia Music Technology
Doctoral Supporting Area in Intermedia Music Technology
These degree programs are directed toward students who wish to pursue creative careers in music technology and who wish to pursue work in association with other artistic disciplines. Each curriculum strives to balance the development of artistic and creative skills with the mastery of the technical aspects of the discipline. The focus is on the creation of new types of musical and intermedia content, not on the vocational training of recording engineers or related technicians. Courses emphasize electronic music and intermedia composition, new performance paradigms that employ sensors, gaming and wireless network devices, and real-time interactive musical and media environments.
Past students hold positions on university faculties, pursue various careers in the music industry, work in multimedia production and sound for video, and independently create technologically-based music.
For more information on the music technology program, visit the Future Music Oregon website.