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Courses

Course descriptions listed on this page for the Department of Music are from the 2017-2018 College Catalog. For more information on the courses offered during the fall and spring semesters, please log in to the course schedule through STAR

Music 101 - Introduction to Music
Fall, spring
A one-semester introduction to art music in the Western tradition, its forms and history, with an emphasis on the major composers of the common practice period. Assignments focus on developing critical listening skills and an appreciation and understanding of Western art music. One unit.

Music 103 - Fundamentals of Music
Fall, spring
Introduction to the rudiments of music theory (notation, scales, intervals, chords, rhythm and meter) and basic musicianship (keyboard skills, score reading and ear training). For students with no previous musical knowledge. One unit.

Music 140 - Song through the Ages
Alternate years
Song through the Ages is a survey of song repertoire from the Western Art Tradition, including chant, madrigal, opera, oratorio, German Lieder, choral symphony, as well as folk and popular song. One unit.

Music 141 - From Opera To Broadway
Annually
Introduction to opera, musical comedy, and related genres such as dance and film music, with attention to the relationship between drama and music. A brief historical survey of each category with study of representative scenes and complete works. One unit.

Music 142 - American Popular Song
Alternate years
Historical survey of American popular song — Stephen Foster, blackface minstrels, sentimental parlor songs, songs of the Civil War, gospel hymns, vaudeville, Tin Pan Alley, Broadway musicals, Jerome Kern, George and Ira Gershwin, jazz-band songs and singers, country music, rhythm and blues, rock ’n’ roll, rock, popular “folk” songs, and more. One unit.

Music 143 - History of Rock
Alternate years
Survey of rock music from its beginnings in earlier forms of popular music to 1990. Attention is given to the relationship of rock music to its cultural, political, and economic contexts. One unit.

Music 150 - American Music
Alternate years
Surveys three main repertoires of music in the United States: folk and traditional music of urban, rural, and ethnic origin; jazz; and art music from Charles Ives to the present, with particular attention to the influence of science and technology on recent developments. One unit.

Music 151 - World Music
Alternate years
Introduction to music of selected African, Asian, and American cultures. Each culture is approached through its social and cultural context, its theoretical systems and musical instruments, as well as its major musical and theatrical genres. One unit.

Music 153 - Music of Bali — Gamelan 1
Fall, spring
Introduces students to Balinese music through the performance of selected pieces from the Gong Kebyar repertory. Instruction provided in the technique of playing the instruments that make up the Gamelan. One unit.

Music 160 - Introduction to Electroacoustic Music
Annually, fall
Survey of electroacoustic music from roughly 1945 to present day. Topics: applicable scientific theory, sound processing techniques, digital waveform synthesis, multitrack recording, and audio mixing. Course activities also include study of selected repertoire and discussion of musical aesthetics. Students complete several creative projects, including the scoring of a short video. No prerequisite. One unit.

Music 161 - Digital Media for Musicians
Annually
Explores the role of digital media in the world of music and teaches how digital tools are utilized by the contemporary composer. Students get “hands-on” experience with digital audio, MIDI, the internet, and a host of computer applications (PowerPoint, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, ProTools, Audacity, Adobe Premier), that are essential for the aspiring musician. One unit.

Music 163 - Business of Music
Alternate years
Explores the world of music business from both a contemporary and historical perspective. Students will examine the economic structure that surrounds the core relationship between the artist and the fan. Topics include: copyright, music publishing, recording contracts, music production, marketing, royalties and concert promotion. One unit.

Music 195 - African American Music: From Blues to Rap
Alternate years
This course is a survey of African-American music from the early 20th century to the present day. This course will consider various musical styles, with special emphasis on developments since 1950, including blues, gospel, R&B, rock and roll, doo-wop, soul, funk, disco, hip-hop, and rap — from the rural south to the urban north; from the east coast to the west coast; from the live stage to the recording studio. Though the primary function of the course will be to consider the development of musical style (that is, the music itself), we will also consider broader questions concerning the influences on and influences of African-American music, issues of cultural appropriation and race, and the agency of such music in social movements from the civil-rights era to the present day. One unit.

Music 197 - Music of Peace and Conflict
Every third year
This course will survey the music related to military conflicts, political movements, and peace making efforts from the Middle Ages to the 21st century. Students will explore how folk music, popular music, and art music have been to used to depict war, express pro- and anti-war sentiments and promote political and ideological positions. Throughout the semester students will examine the broader relationship between music and society, and how world events shape musical styles and genres. One unit.

Music 199 - Special Topics
Annually
Course topics vary from year to year. Introductory.  One unit.

Music 201 - Theory of Music 1
Fall
The first semester of a two-semester intermediate theory sequence devoted to the materials of tonal music: elementary counterpoint, harmony, and analysis. This course is designed to develop the skills and theoretical concepts (voice-leading, harmonization of melodies, figured bass, etc.) that underlie the performance, analysis, and composition of music. Prerequisite: Ability to read music or permission of instructor. One unit.

Music 202 - Theory of Music 2
Spring
The second semester of the two-semester intermediate theory sequence. Prerequisite: Theory 1 or permission of the instructor. One unit.

Music 211 - History of Western Music 1
Fall
Survey of the history of music, its notation, forms, and styles, in Western Europe from the development of music notation in the middle ages to the death of Bach in 1750. Topics include genres and composers of the medieval, renaissance, and baroque periods as well as the study of representative works from scores and recordings. Prerequisite: the ability to read music. One unit.

Music 212 - History of Western Music 2
Spring
Traces the history and development of Western music from 1750 to the present, with emphasis on the major composers and genres of the classical, romantic, and modern periods. Prerequisite: History 1 or permission of instructor. One unit.

Music 213 - The Organ: History and Music
Every third year
Introduction to the history of the construction and design of the pipe organ and its music from the Middle Ages through the present time. One unit.

Music 214 - Music of the 20th Century
Alternate years
Study of representative works of the 20th and 21st centuries that illustrate diverse and innovative compositional techniques, the effect of technological advancements on the creation and distribution of music, the periods of modernism and postmodernism, and more. This course will also examine how major historical events, such as World War II and the Vietnam War, influenced the musical landscape. Prerequisite: Ability to read music or permission of instructor. One unit.

Music 215 - Music of the Classical Era
Every third year
The rise and development of the Viennese classical style with an emphasis on the music of Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. Prerequisite: ability to read music, or permission of the instructor. One unit.

Music 216 - Music of the Baroque Era
Every third year
Study of the most important developments in French, German, and Italian Baroque national styles, from the beginning of the 17th century to the middle of the 18th century. Prerequisite: ability to read music, or permission of instructor. One unit.

Music 218 - Jazz/Improvisation 1
Fall
Introduces students to the fundamentals of jazz harmony and improvisation. Topics include chord and scale construction, harmonic progression, symbols used in improvisation, jazz scales and modes. These theoretical concepts are applied to the analysis and performance of standard jazz tunes. A portion of the class is devoted to performance and improvisation. One unit.

Music 219 - Jazz/Improvisation 2
Spring
Examination and analysis of contemporary jazz improvisation techniques. Students are required to play their own instruments in class. Recorded jazz solos by jazz artists will be analyzed and discussed. One unit.

Music 220 - Music of the Romantic Era
Every third year
An exploration of the repertoire, forms, aesthetics, and social contexts of 19th-century European art music, as well as its relationships with poetry, drama, philosophy, and the visual arts. One unit.

Music 225 - Tutorial
Annually
Independent study of various topics in any field of music of special interest to individual students and their faculty directors.  Permission of faculty member and the department chair.  Intermediate.  One unit.

Music 230 - Mozart and His World
Alternate years
This course offers an in-depth exploration of the music of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791), who began his career as a child prodigy and remains today one of the most popular composers of all time. We will study important works of every major genre, instrumental and vocal, secular and sacred. Access to the Mozart family letters, other primary sources, and a rich variety of critical readings will place Mozart’s music in the multifaceted, vibrant culture of enlightenment Vienna. We will also consider posterity’s fascination with myths about Mozart and take a look at the film Amadeus. One unit.

Music 235 - Beethoven and His World
Alternate years
Beethoven was the most celebrated composer in Europe during his lifetime and his fame has only increased over the last two centuries. His heroic perseverance in the face of deafness--an almost unthinkable affliction for any musician--has transformed his biography into a story of struggle and triumph. In this course we will study some of his most famous works in depth, with an emphasis on the development of his musical style, the immediate socio-cultural context, and reception history. One unit.

Music 236 - Bach and His World
Alternate years
Study of the life and works of J.S. Bach with an emphasis on the development of musical style, the immediate socio-cultural context, and reception history. One unit.

Music 252 - Symphony
Every third year
Introduction to the orchestra, its instruments, and repertory from the inception of public concerts in the 18th century to the present day. One unit.

Music 253 - Music of Bali — Gamelan 2
Fall, spring
Introduces students to more advanced techniques of playing the instruments in the Gamelan. One unit.

Music 255 - Music of Latin America
Alternate years
The discovery and exploration of the different cultures of Latin America through their music. The course focuses on five regions that are musically rich and representative of the variety of roots from which Latin American people have emerged — Brazil, Argentina, Andes, Mexico and Caribbean Islands. One unit.

Music 261 - Advanced Digital Media for Musicians
Annually
Second part of a two course sequence focusing on music creation using the latest digital technology, including hard disk recording, editing, mixing, and digital signal processing. Listening and analysis of historical music compositions and recordings from the 20th century which utilize both analog and digital technology. One unit.

Music 290 - Coding Music
Annually, spring
Coding Music welcomes all majors interested in DIY instrument design and collaborative performance of live electronic music. An experiential class, students learn the science of sound synthesis by designing digital synthesizers that react in real-time to human interaction (pressing keys on a computer keyboard, tilting a cellphone accelerometer, toggling a hacked gaming joystick, etc.). These synthesizers are then used to create musical compositions that the class performs for the end of the semester H-CLEF (Holy Cross Laptop Ensemble Federation) concert. Using technology to create both instruments and repertoire, students broaden creative capacity while exploring how technology can expand artistic expression. One unit.

Music 299 - Special Topics
Annually
Course topics vary from year to year.  Intermediate.  One unit.

Music 301 - Theory of Music 3
Fall
Focuses on the analysis and composition of tonal music through the study of representative works of such composers as Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms. Students are required to produce original compositions. Prerequisite: Theory 2. One unit.

Music 302 - Theory of Music 4
Spring
Focuses on 20th-century musical systems with an emphasis on the study of compositional theory and the analysis of selected works of 20th-century European and American composers. Original composition is required. Prerequisite: Theory 3. One unit.

Music 303 - Theory of Music 5
Every third year
Offers advanced theoretical studies for students who have completed the Theory 1-4 sequence. This course is especially valuable for those students who plan to pursue graduate studies in musicology or theory/composition. One unit.

Music 325 - Tutorial
Annually
Independent study of various topics in any field of music of special interest to individual students and their faculty directors. Permission of faculty member and the department chair. Advanced. One unit.

Music 399 - Special Topics
Annually
Course topics vary from year to year.  Advanced. One unit.

Music 400 - Fourth-Year Seminar
Spring
This course is designed to present an integrated approach to the study of music drawing on and combining aspects of various disciplines (History, Theory, Ethnomusicology, Performance Practice, Popular Music Studies, etc.). Topics and selected works vary from year to year. Required for Music majors. Prerequisite (or co-requisite): Music 212 and Music 302. One unit.

Music 401 - Musicology
Alternate years
An advanced topics course for students with a serious interest in music history and theory, especially majors planning to continue their studies in graduate school. Readings center on historical and analytical methods, recent trends in scholarship, and historiography. Prerequisites: Music 202. One unit.

Music 431, 432 - Intermediate/Advanced Performance
Fall, spring
Instrumental or vocal lessons for students of intermediate to advanced competency. Interested students must consult with the Chair of the department. One unit.

Music 433, 434 - Advanced Performance
Fall, spring
Instrumental or vocal lessons for students of advanced competency. Interested students must consult with the Chair of the Department. One unit.

Music 295 - Gregorian Chant
Annually
In this course students will come to understand the history of Gregorian chant, both as a religious phenomenon and as a repertory of music. The course will begin in the Early Christian era and trace the history of Gregorian chant through the Middle Ages all the way to the present.  Students will consider the role chant was made to play in asserting theological and cultural disagreements that historically led the rise of a variety of forms of Christian worship in the early centuries, some of which continue to be preserved and practiced in the present.  The course will also consider chant’s role as art music and popular music, from the History of Western Music to film and popular song. One unit.

Music 331/332 - Intermediate Performance 1
Annually
Instrumental or vocal lessons for students of intermediate competency. Interested students must consult with the Chair of the department. One unit.