Music Courses

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Music

WCFAH 132 Sound, Music, and Technology (3)
“The history of the music industry is inevitably also the story of the development of technology. From the player piano to the vinyl disc, from reel-to-reel tape to the cassette, from the CD to the digital download, these formats and devices changed not only the way music was consumed, but the very way artists created it.”

Edgar Bronfman, Jr. former CEO of Warner Music Group

Using this quote as a guide, but expanding it to include music and sound as a whole, not just the music industry, this course will broadly examine the effect that technology has had on music and sound after WWII. It will cover music and sound in popular music, art music, film and interactive media, music of other cultures, and sound art and sound installations. The class format is based on a cycle of listening, reading, and creating.  Students will first listen to and discuss works that employ, are made possible, or were fundamentally changed because of a paradigm shift brought about due to a technological innovation.  Students will then read and learn about one particular innovation and finally demonstrate their knowledge of this innovation by creating short musical or sound works of their own and writing about the relationship between technology and their own work or by composing short, focused essays about the relationship between a technological shift and works listened to in class. This class is open to all majors, regardless of prior musical knowledge; however, basic computer skills are required. (WCore: WCFAH)

WCFAH 219 The Music of Two Ring Cycles (4)
In this course, students will examine music composed for two of the greatest fantasy epics ever created, Richard Wagner’s 4-opera Der Ring des Niebelungen and Howard Shore’s soundtracks to the 3-film version of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. Comparisons between the literary content of the cycles are inevitable, from the subject matter to parallel plot developments and even the fantasy creatures that inhabit each world, and these will be studied in the course. In addition to these correspondences, the composers of each cycle used very similar compositional devices to organize the musical content, providing continuity over 10+ hours of music while simultaneously clearly delineating characters, objects, emotional states and more abstract ideas. Students will present their own specialized research on diverse topics relating to the two cycles to their classmates. (WCore: WCFAH, RE)
MUSC 100E Your Singing Career: A User’s Guide (1)
This course is a practical overview of how to navigate a singing career, designed for singers who are beginning their college music studies. We will explore topics that every singer needs to know, from how to memorize music to effective communication in the professional world. We will tackle audition skills, summer programs, and how to build confidence and control nerves.
MUSC 103 Basic Keyboarding (2)
This is a keyboard proficiency, pre-theory course designed strictly for music majors and minors with little or no piano background—the pre-requisite for MUSC 171. This course satisfies the Piano Proficiency Requirement for music majors and minors.
MUSC 104 Fundamentals of Music Theory (2)
This course is an introduction to music notation and theory for music majors and minors with little or no background in this area. Required for those incoming first-year students who are directed into this course via a music theory diagnostic test administered prior to the beginning of their first semester.
MUSC 115/315 Westminster Community Choir (1)
Enrollment is open to all Westminster College students, faculty, and staff. This group typically performs twice a semester on campus, and explores sacred and secular repertoire in a variety of classical, traditional, folk, and popular styles. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Placement audition required.
MUSC 121 Piano Class (2)
This course is an introduction to the piano for non-music students with little or no background in piano. Basic keyboard-related skills and knowledge, and very basic concepts of music theory are covered. This course satisfies the Piano Proficiency Requirement for music majors and minors.
MUSC 122 Guitar Class (2)
This course is an introduction to the guitar as a classical instrument. It is designed for both novices and those who have experience playing non-classical styles on the guitar. For beginners who wish to take private classical guitar lessons, it is a pre-requisite. Classical technique and standard notation are integral components to the course.
MUSC 125/325 Westminster Jazz Ensemble (1)
This ensemble is actively trained in the art of jazz improvisation and typically performs at least once a semester. Students may participate in this ensemble with instruments of their choice; instrumental make-up of the group changes from semester to semester, depending on the instruments students bring. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Audition required.
MUSC 135/335 Westminster Chamber Orchestra (1)
This ensemble is designed especially for string, woodwind, and brass players. A spectrum of classical styles is typically covered in the course of a year, but most repertoire is taken from the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Audition required.
MUSC 145/345 Westminster Chamber Singers (1)
This is Westminster College’s elite choir, generally made up of 36–40 trained singers. It typically appears in concert on campus twice a semester, but also performs extensively off campus, sometimes on tour in and out of state. A variety of classical, traditional, and folk styles are explored. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester.Audition required.
MUSC 165/365 Westminster Opera Studio (1)
This course takes students through the entire process of learning a role for an opera, musical or operetta—from casting and preparation to rehearsal and performance, culminating in a fully staged performance. Course work includes daily improvisations, movement and acting exercises, analysis of performances, discussions of expectations and demands at the professional level, and cultivation of singer-specific rehearsal and performance techniques. Successful collaboration is a major factor in the final performance. Previous vocal training ideal. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Audition required.
MUSC 171 Music Theory I (3)
This is an introduction to the fundamentals of music theory for music majors and minors, featuring the study of melodic, rhythmic, and harmonic elements of music (within the Western tonal system).
MUSC 175/375 Westminster Percussion Ensemble (1)
This class provides an opportunity to investigate rhythm and a wide variety of interesting percussion instruments and tone colors in the social setting of a performing ensemble. At least one performance will be given on campus every semester, involving everyone in the class. Beginners and more experienced players are welcome. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. No audition required at this time.
MUSC 181 Aural Skills I (2)
This course is a lab experience designed to challenge students to improve their basic musical skills in the areas of rhythm, sight-singing, intervallic and harmonic ear training, and fluency in rhythmic and melodic dictation. These skills are essential if music is to be learned efficiently and accurately, and if it is to be performed competently.
MUSC 185/385 Westminster Chamber Players (1)
This class provides Westminster music students—music majors, minors, and otherwise—with an opportunity to join a small group of musicians (2–10 players) in studying and performing great music written specifically for small groups with one player per part. Class time will take the form of the professor coaching each group separately with all groups present. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Audition required.
MUSC 195/395 SugarTown Acapella (1)
In this ensemble, a wide variety of popular styles will be cultivated—from barbershop and sweet adeliene traditions to more contemporary pieces. All students enrolled are strongly advised (in some cased required) to concurrently take one or more of the following: voice lessons, piano lessons, Music Theory I and Aural Skills I. May be repeated for credit. Upper-division credit earned beginning with third semester. Audition required.
MUSC 191/192

291/292

391/392

491/492

Private Lessons (1–2)
A student may enroll for one half-hour or one hour-long private lesson each week for a semester, and receive one or two credit hours respectively. MUSC 191 indicates the first semester of study on a particular instrument; MUSC 192, the second semester of study on that same instrument; 291, the third semester; and so forth, up to MUSC 492, which indicates the eighth semester of study, or the equivalent of the final semester of a four-year course of lessons, on one instrument or in voice. Registration requires a special application form which may be obtained only in the offices of Dr. Brandon Derfler (instrumental) and Prof. Michael Chipman (vocal). A $150 fee is required for each credit hour. Music majors and minors are exempt from fees for lessons taken on their primary instrument, as are students concurrently enrolled in a performing ensemble. Enrollment is open to Westminster students only.
MUSC 200T Music Tech I (3)
This hands-on course will cover many of the core principles of music technology, including acoustics, recording, mixing, mastering, and distribution of audio, MIDI programming and more. You will learn: how to record and produce your own music, history and fundamental practices of music technology, audio recording, MIDI programming, and basic synthesis, basic approaches to composing for other media including film, TV, and interactive games
MUSC 201 English and Italian Diction for Singers (2)
This is a fundamental course designed to help student singers acquire knowledge and understanding of the International Phonetic Alphabet, the correct pronunciation of English and Italian consonants and vowels, the diction rules for singing classical music in these two languages, and translation skills involving both.
MUSC 202 French and German Diction for Singers (2)
This course builds on the skills gained in MUSC 201 (English and Italian Diction for Singers), using knowledge of IPA to acquaint student singers with the correct pronunciation of French and German consonants and vowels, the diction rules for singing classical music in these two languages, and translation skills involving both.
MUSC 203 Vocal Pedagogy (2)
This class will include a thorough study of the physiological, acoustical and scientific aspects of vocal production; the establishing of a standard for bel canto (beautiful singing); and an exploration of what bel canto means in practical terms. All the essential aspects of good teaching will be studied and discussed in a variety of ways, including students being required to teach other students—both privately and in a group setting.
MUSC 204 Art Song Literature Survey (2)
This course will survey the varied repertoire of art song music, from 18th century Italian songs, to the great German Romantic composers of the 19th century, to the French Symbolists at the turn of the 20th century, as well as American and British composers of the 20th and 21st centuries. Study will be combined with performance as part of the course work.
MUSC 205 Opera Literature Survey (2)
This course will survey the world of opera, from the 17th century Baroque masterpieces of Monteverdi to the brilliant Classical-period operas of Mozart, to the grand operas of the Romantic era to the minimalist contemporary operas of John Adams. The course will require students to immerse themselves in the art form, watching operas on video, attending live operas in Salt Lake City, studying composers and libretti, and completing a variety of assignments pertaining to all.
MUSC 207 World Music, World Perspectives (3)
This course is a selective survey of the music of the indigenous and migrant populations of Africa, India, China, Southeast Asia, Indonesia, the Middle East, Central and South America, and North America. In this course we will examine the ways that music functions within these cultures. We will examine the music itself, the people who make it, the instruments they use, and the complex ideas, behaviors, and processes that are involved in the production of this music. (WCore: EWRLD)
MUSC 231 Collaborative Piano I (2)
This course provides instruction in the art of accompanying singers, learning specific techniques to support and enhance the musical and vocal needs of singers. Other topics of the class include an in-depth study of significant composers and literature for voice and piano from Italian art songs, Schubert’s Lieder to Debussy’s mélodie, sight-reading, and musical theatre piano accompaniment. Pianists will perform and work with singers throughout the semester.
MUSC 232 Collaborative Piano II (2)
This course provides a guided framework for pianists to learn the art of playing with instrumentalists ranging from violinists to brass players. Other topics include repertoire exploration of landmark pieces from the 18th century to the present day where the piano plays an equal role with another instrument. Pianists will perform and work with instrumentalists and faculty throughout the semester.
MUSC 241 Piano Literature I (2)
This course provides an in-depth examination of solo keyboard music from the era of the clavichord and harpsichord to the evolution of the fortepiano and the modern piano. Listening, analysis, and some performing of the great keyboard works written during the late Renaissance through Beethoven.
MUSC 242 Piano Literature II (2)
This course provides an in-depth examination of the solo piano works written from Schubert to the present day.
MUSC 243 Piano Pedagogy (2)
This course is designed to explore various methodologies and best practices on how to teach piano. Interactive workshops for students will include: learning how to teach child and adult students at the beginner and intermediate level, how to set up a private teaching studio, and small research projects examining various popular method books.
MUSC 271 Music Theory II (3)
This is a continuation of the study of diatonic music theory, featuring the study of functional harmony, music analysis, and four-part writing. Composition will be heavily integrated.
MUSC 281 Aural Skills II (2)
This course is a continuation of Aural Skills I, designed to develop proficiency in singing prepared melodies, melodies at sight, rhythmic patterns, and in accurately notating rhythmic, melodic, and harmonic dictation.
MUSC 300 Special Topics in Music (1-3)
Significant topics are explored in any of the many sub-disciplines of music. Examples of such courses include: Songwriting, Advanced Sight Singing, Beethoven’s Nine Symphonies, Analysis of Rock Music, The English Madrigal—Style and Performance, and May Term Study Experiences. May be repeated for credit.
MUSC 301 Choral Conducting (2)
In this course, students will learn techniques necessary for the successful conducting of a choir. Conducting (i.e., metrical) patterns, cuing, non-verbal communication of musical interpretation, score analysis, the relationship between conductor and musicians, and rehearsal techniques will be covered in detail. Course activities—inside and outside class—will include required reading, assigned listening, conducting practice, video-taped practice, live performance, and both peer and instructor evaluations.
MUSC 302 Instrumental Conducting (2)
In this course, students will learn techniques necessary for the successful conducting of instrumental ensembles such as concert bands and chamber orchestras. Baton patterns, cuing, non-verbal communication of musical interpretation, score analysis, the relationship between conductor and musicians, and rehearsal techniques will be covered in detail. Course activities—inside and outside class—will include required reading, assigned listening, baton practice, live performance, and instructor evaluations.
MUSC 351 History of Western Classical Music I (3)
This is the first semester of a four-semester music history sequence. It involves a close look at a large volume of repertoire, score analysis, extensive listening, and writing. This semester will cover the Middle Ages and Renaissance, to about the year 1600.
MUSC 352 History of Western Classical Music II (3)
This is the second semester of a four-semester music history sequence. It involves a close look at a large volume of repertoire, score analysis, extensive listening, and writing. This semester will cover the Baroque and Classical periods, roughly 1600–1800.
MUSC 353 History of Western Classical Music III (3)
This is the third semester of a four-semester music history sequence. This course involves a close look at a large volume of repertoire, score analysis, extensive listening, and writing. This semester will cover the Romantic period, roughly 1800–1900.
MUSC 354 History of Western Classical Music IV (3)
This is the fourth and final semester of a four-semester music history sequence. This course involves a close look at a large volume of repertoire, score analysis, extensive listening, and writing. This semester will cover the twentieth century and beyond.
MUSC 371 Music Theory III (3)
This course is a continuation of Music Theory II and involves the study of harmonic procedures of the 18th and 19th centuries, with topics including secondary functions, chromatic harmony, and formal structures. Some composition involved. Intended for music majors or highly motivated music minors.
MUSC 381 Aural Skills III (2)
This course is a continuation of Aural Skills II, designed to develop proficiency in singing more complex prepared melodies, melodies at sight, rhythmic patterns, and in accurately notating rhythmic, melodic, and harmonic dictation.
MUSC 401 Directed Studies (1-4)
A tutorial-based course used only for student-initiated proposals for intensive individual study of topics not otherwise offered in the Music Program. Requires consent of instructor and school dean. This course is repeatable for credit.
MUSC 420 Senior Recital (2)
This is the capstone project for music performance minors, a 30–45-minute solo recital to be given on campus in the recital hall during the final semester of private lessons or a semester following the final semester of lessons. These credit hours will be earned in the same manner as that of private lessons, but with the specific goal of a performance determining the nature and intensity of training. (WCore: SC)
MUSC 421 Senior project (2)
This is the capstone course for music majors who are completing the Bachelor of Arts degree without a performance emphasis. This project can address any number of subjects—musical or connected to music in at least one major way—and it may take any number of different forms, though both subject and form must be worked out and agreed upon by the student and at least one music faculty member. (WCore: SC)
MUSC 440 Internship (1-8)
Offers students the opportunity to integrate classroom knowledge with practical experience. Prerequisites: junior or senior standing (for transfer students, at least 15 hours completed at Westminster or permission of instructor), minimum 2.5 GPA, and consent of program director and Career Center internship coordinator. This course is repeatable for credit.
MUSC 471 Music Theory IV (3)
This course is a continuation of Music Theory III, with a focus on extended tonal harmony and an introduction to post-tonal harmony and compositional and analytical techniques. Intended for music majors or highly motivated music minors.
MUSC 481 Aural Skills IV (2)
This course is a continuation of Aural Skills III, designed to develop proficiency in singing increasingly chromatic prepared melodies, melodies at sight, complex rhythmic patterns, and in accurately notating rhythmic, melodic, contrapuntal, and harmonic dictation.
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