Introductory Courses

If you’re interested in taking a course in the music department but not sure which courses would be suitable, here are some options to consider:

Music 030                                         1000 Years of Musical Listening

In this historical survey, the student learns to listen analytically to music from the Middle Ages down to the present day.  A wide range of musical repertories including plainchant, opera, orchestral music, and chamber music is covered.  Composers studied include Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Verdi, and Wagner.  

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences  Sector III:  Arts and Letters and Cross Cultural Analysis.
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement

Music 031                                         History of Symphony

A survey of representative symphonies by such composers as Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Berlioz, Schumann, Brahms, Tchaikowsky, and Mahler. Historical developments will be considered, along with the effects upon symphonic literature of such major sociological changes as the emergence of the public concert hall. But the emphasis will be on the music itself--particularly on the ways we can sharpen our abilities to engage and comprehend the composers' musical rhetoric.  (Formerly Music 040)

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Cross Cultural Requirement. 
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement.

Music 032                                         Composers

Courses under this number will focus on a specific composer from the classical tradition. As well as introducing students to the music and cultural environment of a given composer, courses will also examine the reception and canonization of a given composer, and the mechanisms of cult-formation. (Formerly Music 028) 

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Sector III: Arts and Letters and Cross Cultural Analysis Requirement.
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement

Music 033                                         History of Opera

Pure pleasure or pure torture: Opera is said to be both. Music 33 is an introduction to opera based on its 400-year history from 1600 to the end of the 20th century. The course is open to all students, and ability to read music is not necessary. Issues covered include the relationships between words, action, and music in opera; singers and their power; opera as spectacle; opera in film; and the experience of live performance (formerly Music 30).

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Cross Cultural Requirement. 
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement.

Music 035                                         History of Jazz
This course is an exploration of the family of musical idioms called jazz. Attention will be given to issues of style development, selective musicians, and to the social and cultural conditions and the scholarly discourses that have informed the creation, dissemination and reception of this dynamic set of styles from the beginning of the 20th century to the present.

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Cultural Diversity in the U.S.
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement

Music 050                                         World Musics and Cultures

Surveying repertories of various societies from Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Americas, this course examines relations between aesthetic production and social processes.  We investigate musical sounds, cultural logics informing those sounds, and social strategies of performance.  Topics include indigenous music theories, music and social organization, symbolic expression and musical meaning, gender, religion, and social change.
Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences  Sector III: Arts and Letters
Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Cross Cultural Analysis Requirement
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement

Music 051                                         Music of Africa

African Contemporary Music: North, South, East, and West. Come to know contemporary Africa through the sounds of its music: from South African kwela, jazz, marabi, and kwaito to Zimbabwean chimurenga; Central African soukous and pygmy pop; West African Fuji, and North African rai and hophop. Through reading and listening to live performance, audio and video recordings, we will examine the music of Africa and its intersections with politics, history, gender, and religion in the colonial and post colonial era. (Formerly Music 053).

Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences Cross Cultural Analysis Requirement.
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement

Music 070                                        Making Sense of Music

This course will cover basic skills and vocabulary for reading, hearing, performing, analyzing, and writing music. Students will gain command of musical rudiments, including notation, reading and writing in treble and bass clefs, intervals, keys, scales, triads and seventh chords, and competence in basic melodic and formal analysis. The course will include an overview of basic diatonic harmony, introduction to harmonic function and tonicization. Musicianship skills will include interval and chord recognition, rhythmic and melodic dictation and familiarity with the keyboard. There will be in-depth study of selected compositions from the "common practice" Western tradition, including classical, jazz, blues and other popular examples. Listening skills--both with scores (including lead sheets, figured bass and standard notation), and without--will be emphasized. There is no prerequisite. Students with some background in music may place out of this course and into Music 170, Theory and Musicianship I.
(Formerly Music 70, 71).
Fulfills School of Arts and Sciences  Formal Reasoning and Analysis.
Fulfills School of Engineering and Applied Sciences Humanities Requirement.