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Featured Courses for Fall 2018

This fall, we will be offering a few courses we don't often offer and one course we've never offered before:

Postdoctoral teaching fellow Fritz Schenker will teach Musics of the Transpacific (MUS 3017) and department chair David Henderson will teach Musics of South Asia (ASIA/MUS 244).  Both of these courses are open to all students without prerequisites.

Newell Center for Arts Technology director Chris Watts will be offering a SoundSandBox (MUS 029) and composer In-Sil Yoo will teach Composition (MUS 350).  The former requires an audition in early fall and the prerequisite for the latter is Music Theory (MUS 200/201).

For course descriptions, read on.

MUS 029, SoundSandBox

Your voice isn’t the only instrument you carry around with you. SoundSandBox for fall 2018 will be a mobile device ensemble. Together we will explore some of the possibilities for music-making with smartphones and tablets. Bring your fingers, ears, and a mobile device or two as we experiment with a variety of musical genres and as many apps as we can find.

Rehearsals are on Fridays from 1:00-4:00 in the Underground (NC001). Auditions will be held at the beginning of the semester. If you are interested in joining the group, start looking for musical apps you might use. More information about auditions will be posted on the ensembles pages as the time approaches.

For more information, contact Christopher Watts, director.

MUS 244, Musics of South Asia

South Asia is the subcontinent that lies south of the Himalayas and includes India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka. There are also substantial South Asian populations elsewhere. Topics for study include devotional song, Bollywood film music, urban Nepali drumming, and electronic music in New York and London. The course begins with a grounding in the classical music traditions of India, moves on to explore selected musical practices around South Asia, and finishes with a consideration of music’s place in the South Asian diaspora.

MUS 3017, Musics of the Transpacific

Hip hop in Japan, Hawaiian slide guitar in Mississippi, and Chinese gongs in California: all are sounds of a distinctly transpacific world. While some political analysts have noted the growing significance of U.S.-China relations in declaring the twenty-first century as the start of a transpacific era, people, goods, and music have long been circulating within and across the Pacific Ocean. In fact, transpacific relations are a central yet often overlooked part of U.S. history, in part because it is a history marked by U.S. imperial conquest in the Pacific and Asia.

In this course, we will turn to music to explore this transpacific world and its significance to the histories of the U.S. and various Asian nations. Three broad sections focus on (1) the influence of Asian and Pacific Ocean music in the U.S., (2) the circulation of music from Hawai’i and other Pacific Islands, and (3) the spread of U.S. music in Asia. We will examine how music plays a critical role in both revealing and informing the myriad connections and relationships between the U.S., Pacific Islands, and Asia.

Formal knowledge of music and ability to read music notation is not required.

MUS 350, Composition

The primary goal of this course is to give students the opportunity to create original music compositions with a special emphasis on exploring the relationship of music and modern dance. Students will develop contemporary compositional techniques with projects demonstrating an understanding of the basic procedures that characterize the collaboration between music and dance. By the end of the semester, students are expected create one substantive work performed in public.