Lisa Hearne, Martin Hearne, James Martin (chair), Jama Stilwell

Cornell College offers a major in Music within the framework of the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Special Studies degrees. The Department of Music oversees the Bachelor of Music degree, with majors either in Performance or in Music Education (see Bachelor of Music Degree).

The Bachelor of Arts allows the student with a strong interest in music the opportunity to explore various musical pursuits within the general liberal arts program of the College. Instruction in a performing medium and participation in solo performance and ensemble courses are required components of the B.A. Music major.

Major:

  1. A minimum of 11 course credits in Music, which include:
    1. MUS 110, 210, 310, 343, 346, 321, 322, and 323;
    2. A minimum of one and one-half course credits in Solo Performance courses (selected from 731-793), of which one course credit must be in one medium; and
    3. A minimum of one and one-half course credits in large Music Ensembles (selected from MUS 712, 713, 715, 716, and 717), of which one course credit must be earned in one ensemble;
  2. Passing the Piano Proficiency Requirement (see below);
  3. Completion of a senior capstone experience;
  4. All Music majors must enroll in a Solo Performance course (music lesson) and in a music ensemble during their final three semesters, unless excused by the Music Department; and
  5. Receive a passing grade (P) in MUS 701 for a minimum of five semesters (see "Music Performance Seminar").

All senior Music majors must complete a senior capstone experience. There are two categories from which to choose: recital (MUS 798 or 799); or paper/project (MUS 485). Students may choose both of these options if they wish. Students who plan to complete MUS 485 as their capstone must submit a description of the proposed project for departmental approval by October 1 of their senior year. Student teaching fulfills this requirement for music education majors.

Minor: A minimum of six course credits in Music which include MUS 110, 210, 310, and at least three additional courses in Music at the 200 level or above, selected in consultation with and approved by the Department, not to include MUS 212, 301, or any 700 numbered course. After declaration of the Music Minor the student will also be registered for MUS 701. 

Music Lessons at Cornell: Students register for Solo Performance courses (music lessons) at the beginning of Term One and Term Five. These courses are taught over four consecutive terms. Registration entails additional costs (see Music Lessons, Fees). Students may withdraw from these courses only during the first of the four terms. If a student withdraws from a Solo Performance course during the drop period, he or she will be charged only for the lessons scheduled between the beginning of the course and the date when the course is officially dropped and no entry concerning the course will appear on the student's transcript. After the drop period has passed, if a student ceases to attend, a grade of F will appear on the student's transcript and the student will be billed for the full semester charge. All music scholarship students must be enrolled in music lessons to retain their scholarships. After a student has earned more than one course credit in the continuing study of the same instrument, he or she may count the additional credits toward the fulfillment of the general B.A. requirement for a minimum of nine courses numbered in the 300s or 400s.

Piano Proficiency Requirement: All Music majors, regardless of degree or program, must pass the Piano Proficiency Requirement by the end of the sophomore year. If this requirement is not passed by this time, the student must take applied piano (MUS 761 or 762) until the requirement has been passed. The requirement consists of six components: performance of three prepared works; scales; arpeggios; sight reading; and melody harmonization. Also, as part of the requirement, Music Education majors must demonstrate their ability to perform an accompaniment with a singer or instrumentalist. A student may pass the requirement in segments.

Ensemble Participation: Participation in large music ensembles (MUS 712, 713, 715, 716, and 717) is required of all Music majors and music scholarship students, regardless of degree or program. Requirements vary, depending on the degree program. The student must perform within an ensemble on his/her primary instrument unless otherwise approved by the Department of Music. Pianists must complete one full-credit from the large ensembles (712, 713, 714, 715, 716) before they may count MUS 719 or MUS 711 as their primary ensemble credit. Only pianists may use 719 or 711 to fulfill an ensemble requirement. Regulations governing adding and dropping ensembles are the same as for Music Lessons, with the exception of MUS 718.

Music Performance Seminar: The Music Performance Seminar (MUS 701) is a semester-long program that consists of attendance at music events. The purpose of this Seminar is to help nurture an understanding of diverse musical styles and musical ensembles and to provide opportunities for student performances. Attendance at concerts, recitals, and Friday afternoon Music Performance Seminar Student Recitals is required of all Music majors and minors, as well as all other students who are enrolled in music lessons. (Students who have accepted a William Fletcher King, Trustee, or Dean's Music Scholarship must satisfy, at minimum, the recital attendance requirement for a Music minor.) The number of required events changes from semester to semester. Students should contact the Department of Music each semester for details. Music majors must receive a passing grade in Music Performance Seminar (MUS 701) in a minimum of five semesters in order to complete the major. Failure to meet the attendance requirement will result in the student's receiving an F for Music Performance Seminar. No course credit is given for this Seminar. It is offered on a Pass/Fail basis.

101. Fundamentals of Music
Basic music reading skills for all interested students, while learning to listen to and recognize the structural and aesthetic elements of music. Preparation for MUS 110. (Fine Arts) BREWER or STAFF

109. First Year Seminar in Music
Seminar for first year students only. Engagement with a topic in music, often with an interdisciplinary approach. See Topics Courses for current course description. (Humanities)

110. Music Theory I
Fundamentals of music: harmony, melody, rhythm, scales, and forms; with a concentration on the common-practice period, 1600-1900 (with some twentieth century music). Application of these topics to analysis, writing, listening, sight-singing, and an introduction to music literature. Prerequisite: MUS 101, passing music placement test, or permission of instructor. (Fine Arts) STILWELL

115. Beginning Electronic Music Composition
An introduction to composing electronic music using Reason software. Course will cover basic synthesis types, sound processing, and MIDI, as well as compositional concepts and techniques associated with traditional electronic music studio. Offered every three years. (Fine Arts) 

207. Vocal Diction (1/2)
Italian, French, German, and English diction as related to the art song and to choral music. Required of all students whose major performance medium is voice; also required of General Music Education majors. Alternate years. L. HEARNE

210. Music Theory II
Continuation of MUS 110, with the addition of keyboard techniques. Topics include the harmonic progression, triads in inversion, non-chord tones, and an introduction to phrases, periods, and their role in creating musical form. Prerequisite: MUS 110. No S/U option. (Fine Arts) STILWELL

212. Music Listening and Understanding
Learning to understand Western art music through historical study and perceptive listening. Does not count toward the Music major or minor. (Humanities)

215. Jazz Improvisation
Improvisation in American jazz, including daily performing experiences in these styles. Prerequisite: MUS 310. Offered every third year. (Fine Arts)

217. Opera
An introduction to opera as a genre and a study of selected masterpieces. The course will involve both traditional investigations and newer scholarly approaches from areas such as "queer studies" and feminist scholarship. Themes of the course will be those of the operas studied: politics, gender, class, love, death, sexuality, the individual within society, religion, and, of course, the union of music and drama. Ability to read music not required. Offered subject to availability of faculty. May be repeated for credit with permission of instructor. (Interdisciplinary) MARTIN

218. Rock Music: Historical and Cultural Perspectives
Rock music from its origins in African-American blues to the present. Examination of the music's interaction with ethnicity, racism, capitalism, sexism, and politics. Open to all students. Offered subject to availability of faculty. (Humanities)

219. Revolutionary Music of the Twentieth Century
Avant-garde music of the twentieth century and the ways it has challenged previously-held musical and aesthetic values. Ives, Satie, Futurism, Dadaism, Duchamp, Varèse, Cage, and beyond. Experimental works and ideas in arts other than music. Open to all students. Offered subject to availability of faculty. (Humanities)

220. Jazz History
Jazz in America from its roots in Africa and Western Europe to present-day styles and practices. Open to all students. Offered every third year. Prerequisite: writing-designated course (W). (Humanities)

263. Women and Music
The roles of women in the history of Western music with special emphasis on the music of women composers. Exploration of issues surrounding gender and musical style. Prerequisite: writing-designated course (W). Ability to read music not required. (Humanities)

270 through 275. Topics in Music
Study of a selected topic. May be repeated for credit if content is different. See  Topics Courses.

280/380. Internship: see Courses 280/380.

290/390. Individual Project: see Courses 290/390.

302. Song Literature
Investigation of the solo repertoire for the voice. Required of all majors in voice performance. Open to others with permission of instructor. Offered upon request. No S/U option.

303. Service Playing and Arranging
Selecting music for the church service, the playing of the service, and the study of chanting. Required of all students majoring in performance in organ. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. Offered upon request. No S/U option.

304. Literature of the Major Instrument
Study of the repertoire available for the primary instrument. Required of all majors in instrumental performance. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. No S/U option.

305. Orchestration (1/2)
Scoring for wind ensemble, orchestra, and chamber groups. Characteristics of modern instruments. Prerequisite: MUS 310. Offered upon request. No S/U option.

306. Conducting I
Basic conducting skills for both vocal and instrumental ensembles. Baton technique, musical styles and interpretations, rehearsal techniques, and score reading. Prerequisite: MUS 310. No S/U option.

307. Piano Pedagogy (1/2)
Examination and discussion of current ideas and methods of teaching piano, including lectures, observation of individual and class piano lessons, and supervised practice teaching. Required of all piano performance majors. Open to other pianists with the permission of instructor. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Offered upon request, subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option. MARTIN

308. Vocal Pedagogy (1/2)
Historical and pedagogical development of the art of singing and a study of the physiology of the singing process. Emphasis on teaching techniques and care of the voice. Required of all students majoring in voice. Open to other vocalists with the permission of instructor. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Alternate years. No S/U option. L. HEARNE

310. Music Theory III
Continuation of MUS 210. Topics include seventh chords, chord inversion, secondary functions, and an introduction to modulation. Prerequisite: MUS 210. No S/U option. STILWELL

315. Jazz Arranging
Scoring for the jazz ensemble. Study of contemporary practices for writing and arranging in the jazz idiom. Projects include arrangements for the conventional big band as well as for small jazz ensembles. Prerequisite: MUS 346. Offered upon request, subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option.

321. History of Western Music I: Medieval and Renaissance
Chronological development of Western music from Antiquity through the late Renaissance. Emphasis on historical, cultural, aesthetic, and structural examination of musical works; and the development of genres, forms, and performance practices. Prerequisites: writing-designated course (W) and the ability to read music. No S/U option. (Humanities) STILWELL

322. History of Western Music II: Baroque and Classical
Chronological development of Western music from the Baroque (seventeenth century) through Beethoven. Emphasis on historical, cultural, aesthetic, and structural examination of musical works; and the development of genres, forms, and performance practices. Prerequisites: MUS 310 and writing-designated course (W). No S/U option. (Humanities) MARTIN

323. History of Western Music III: Romantic to the Present
Chronological development of Western music from the Romantics to the present. Emphasis on historical, cultural, aesthetic, and structural examination of musical works; and the development of genres, forms and performance practices. Prerequisites: MUS 310 and writing-designated course (W). No S/U option. (Humanities) MARTIN

331. Music Education Seminar (1/2)
Introduction to the music teaching profession, with an emphasis on student evaluation, planning, classroom management, teaching strategies, and audiovisual and computer applications. Twenty-five hours of observation/practicum in music in the schools. Prerequisite: MUS 310. No S/U option.

343-346. Music Theory IV and V
Continuation of MUS 310, with emphasis on aural skills, structural analysis, and formal designs of music from the common-practice period. Prerequisite: MUS 310. No S/U option. STAFF

348. Counterpoint
Fundamental contrapuntal principles that occur in polyphonic music. Prerequisite: MUS 346. Offered upon request.  No S/U option.

349. Form and Analysis
Overview of the standard forms and genres found in the common-practice and twentieth century periods. Study of techniques for uncovering the structure of a specific work. Prerequisite: MUS 346. Offered upon request. No S/U option.

350. Mozart and Beethoven
Historical and analytical study of selected works. Relationships, structures, and meanings within the works selected. Prerequisites: writing-designated course (W) and the ability to read music (treble and bass clefs). Offered subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option. (Humanities)

352. The Ring Cycle of Wagner
Wagner's four-opera epic cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen. Viewing of performances of The Ring, the work's mythologies, operatic ideals, historic and cultural position, development of leitmotif, interpretations, and philosophical influences and content. Prerequisite: writing-designated course (W). Offered subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option. (Interdisciplinary) MARTIN

353. Wagner and Wagnerism (at the Newberry Library, Chicago)
An examination of Richard Wagner's Musikdramen, essays, theories, sources, and influences, including the phenomenon of Wagnerism. The course will include a study of one of his major works, and students will carry out research at the Library. Prerequisite: writing-designated course (W). Alternate years. No S/U option. (Interdisciplinary)

361 through 366. Topics in Music History and Theory
Topics vary from year to year according to the interests of the instructor or students. Prerequisites: two courses in music theory and one course in music history. See Topics Courses. No S/U option.

406. Conducting II: Band (1/2)
407. Conducting II: Choral (1/2)
408. Conducting II: Orchestral (1/2)
Continuation of MUS 306. Advanced score analysis, advanced rehearsal and performance techniques. Course requirements include attendance at all rehearsals and performances of the ensemble involved and private instruction in analysis and conducting techniques. Taught by the regular conductors of the College ensembles. Prerequisite: MUS 306. Offered upon request, subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option.

431. Methods and Materials for Music Education
Preparation for teaching music in the elementary and secondary schools. Educational philosophies, conducting and arranging skills, the teaching of vocal and instrumental music, and teaching strategies for various ages. Twenty-five hours of observation-practicum in music in the schools. Prerequisites: MUS 331 and fulfillment of the Piano Proficiency Requirement. No S/U option.

432. Marching Band Techniques
Charting, arranging for, organizing, and directing a marching band, with particular emphasis on high school marching bands. Prerequisite: MUS 346. Offered upon request, subject to availability of faculty. No S/U option.

485. Independent Study in Music (1/2-1)
A project in an area of performance practices or some phase of music history, theory, or education. Prerequisite: permission of the instructor. No S/U option.

701. Music Performance Seminar (Zero Course Credit)
A semester-long program requiring attendance at a number of musical events. The number of required events changes from semester to semester. Students should contact the Department of Music each semester for details. (See Music Performance Seminar.)

702. Composition (1/2-1)
Original composition for various media, beginning with smaller forms. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. No S/U option. (Fine Arts)

703 through 706 Instrumental Techniques (1/4)
Development of basic performing techniques. Study and evaluation of procedures and materials for elementary and intermediate instrumental teaching. No S/U option.

703. Brass   706. Woodwinds
704. Percussion   708. Guitar
705. Strings    

709 (1/4); 710 (1/2). Advanced Jazz Improvisation
A continuation of MUS 215 Jazz Improvisation. Study and discussion of the various approaches to jazz improvisation. Focus will be on chord/scale relationships, advanced harmonic substitutions, stylistic considerations, solo analysis, and relationships between harmony, melody, and structure. Students will also begin learning important pieces in the basic jazz repertoire. May be repeated for credit. No S/U option.

Ensemble and Solo Performance Courses: Music courses numbered 711 through 793 are open to all qualified students upon audition, may be repeated for credit, and may be counted toward the fulfillment of the Fine Arts General Education Requirement. Any combination of these courses that totals a full course credit will satisfy this requirement. These courses normally encompass four terms and are taken along with principal and concurrent courses. MUS 718/728 (Cornell Lyric Theatre) is an exception.

The regulations governing the adding and dropping of Solo Performance (music lessons) and Ensemble courses are given under "Music Lessons at Cornell" and "Ensemble Participation." These regulations apply to all students taking these courses whether or not they are Music majors. To enroll, students register directly and in advance with the Department secretary in Term One or Term Six.

Only juniors and seniors who are candidates for the B.Mus. degree with a major in Performance are permitted to register for a full course credit in a Solo Performance course. Students considering the B.Mus. degree with a major in Performance should register each semester of their first and sophomore years for a half-credit lesson in their primary performance medium and for a full course credit each semester during their last two years. Other music students take lessons for a quarter-course credit each semester or, with the permission of the Department, for a half-course credit.

All students enrolled in a Solo Performance course will be enrolled automatically in the concurrent MUS 701 Music Seminar course.

Ensemble Courses No S/U option.

711 (1/4) Chamber Ensembles
712 (1/4) Choir
713 (1/4) Jazz Ensemble
714 (1/4) College Chorale
715 (1/4) Orchestra
716 (1/4) Concert Band
717 (1/4) Chamber Singers
719 (1/4) Accompanying
720 (1/4) Steel Drum Ensemble

718. Cornell Lyric Theatre (1/4)
Participation in an opera, operetta, or musical theater production. Open to all students by audition or with permission of instructor. May be repeated for credit. No S/U option. (Fine Arts) 

Solo Performance Courses No S/U option.

At the end of each solo performance course, every student must pass an examination before a jury of the faculty of the Department. The fees for music lessons are given in the section on Financial Information.

  731 (1/4), 732 (1/2), 733 (1) Brass Instruments
  741 (1/4), 742 (1/2), 743 (1) Organ
  751 (1/4), 752 (1/2), 753 (1) Percussion Instruments
  761 (1/4), 762 (1/2), 763 (1) Piano
  771 (1/4), 772 (1/2), 773 (1) String Instruments
  774 (1/4), 775 (1/2), 776 (1) Guitar
  777 (1/4), 778 (1/2), 779 (1) Harp
  781 (1/4), 782 (1/2), 783 (1) Voice
  791 (1/4), 792 (1/2), 793 (1) Woodwind Instruments

798. Half Recital (1/2)
25 minutes of music. Required of Music Performance majors. Available to any student with approval of the Department. No S/U option.

799. Full Recital
50 minutes of music; usually performed in the senior year. Required of Music Performance majors. Available to any student with approval of the Department. No S/U option.

964. Chicago Semester in the Arts: see Chicago Semester in the Arts Program (ACM).