Traditional scoring techniques for full chorus with and without instrumental accompaniment. A choral composition in a traditional style is required as a final project.
Examination of representative solo vocal works from the 19th and 20th centuries (including works requiring nontraditional vocal techniques), with emphasis on dramatic organization, relationship of music to text, and appropriateness to the capacity of the trained singing voice. Special attention given to principles of vocal technique and speech articulation as they apply to composition, principles of vocal notation, and considerations of opera and musical theater. Students will be expected to write specified vocal passages based on assigned texts as well as participate in some improvisation and dramatic reading of texts in class.
Introduction to Electroacoustic Music for Composers is a survey course in electronic and computer music composition. Designed especially for students on Berklee composition tracks, the course is suitable for any student wishing to gain a comprehensive overview of the history and techniques of electronic music while learning to compose works at the computer for electronics alone or in combination with live instruments.
This is an advanced course for composition majors and other interested students which introduces composing with technology in a stylistically open way. Students will use a broad set of tools and techniques in composing with technology, such as controlled algorithmic composition, spectralism, and others. Techniques and software in sound analysis, music formalization, and live electronics will be used at different stages of the creative process, from the conception of a musical idea to a fully realized composition. Possible software used includes Max/MSP, Sonic Visualizer, Spear, and others. This course culminates with students composing a new electroacoustic work for one instrument and electronics which will be workshopped and presented in class.
Approaches to composition using ideas and aesthetic principles from a variety of non-Western musical traditions. Explorations of diverse concepts of rhythm, melody, timbre, and form as heard in the music of Africa, Asia, India, and South America. Assignments will include a substantial composition illustrating these principles.
A systematic approach to the art of composing in the jazz idiom. Exploration of melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic principles. Standard jazz song form. Analysis of jazz standards. Arranging considerations applied as a means of enhancing a composition. Projects for small jazz group required.
Composition of non-song-form jazz pieces based on motivic development. Discussion of form and content as it applies to episodic composition in jazz. Examination of representative works by various jazz composers. Various assignments and the composition of an episodic five-minute piece are required.
Composition of multisection extended jazz compositions. Discussion of form and orchestration as it applies to extended composition in jazz. Examination of representative works by various jazz composers. Composition of a short chamber piece without rhythm section and a large-scale ten-minute piece are required.
This course provices an extensive study of the performing masters of jazz composition. The course will analyze the works, life and timeline of artists such as Duke Ellington/Billy Strayhorn, Thelonious Monk/Charles Mingus, Herbie Hancock, Carla Bley, Wayne Shorter, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, Mary Lou Williams, Toshiko Akiyoshi, Geri Allen, and Keith Jarrett. Students will be listening, transcribing, performing and writing compositions that utilize methods of these great composers. Through the study of these composers students discover common links and insights that influence and direct them future possibilities of Jazz composition and concepts to enhance and build their own artistic identity.
Survey and analysis of music growing out of the bebop jazz era. Extensive study of John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Wayne Shorter, and Thelonious Monk. Discussion of blues forms and modal harmony used in the 1960s. Application of concepts through composition of original music.
Individualized instruction in composing small forms (i.e., short instrumental pieces, themes and variations, art songs, single movements of larger works, etc.). Emphasis on developing stylistic diversity and gaining experience in writing for various musical textures and ensemble combinations.
This course will give interested students, particularly Composition majors, the opportunity to pursue individual interests in electro-acoustic composition, and further their skills and creative abilities with electronic music. The primary focus is on creating original electronic works that would be suitable for inclusion in a Composition Major portfolio, and provide tools for the student's further exploration and development. Students will acquire skills in timbral exploration, sound design, acousmatics, and the ability to conduct independent research and composition projects.