With CGU’s Master of Arts in Music, you will develop the necessary tools, knowledge, and experience to pursue a serious career in professional music.
Our program strikes a critical balance between music performance and scholarship, examining music in its interdisciplinary, cultural, and intellectual contexts while providing a mastery of the theory and practice of performance. Faculty includes highly trained performers and musical scholars whose diverse interests range across musicology, performance, and composition. They bring their passion for music and scholarship into the classroom and serve as invaluable mentors. Under their guidance, you’ll join a long list of accomplished graduates who have gone on to careers as college and university professors, members of professional ensembles, music directors in churches, and solo performing artists.
The Music Department puts on an array of concerts that offer ample performance opportunities.
Studio faculty are drawn from the Claremont Colleges and the outstanding pool of musicians in the greater Los Angeles area.
Historical performance practice programs connect you with period instruments that include three harpsichords, a fortepiano, a chamber organ, and various stringed instruments.
Program at a Glance
32 – 36 units*
* Students who are pursuing a concentration in Historical Performance Practices require 36 units
ESTIMATED COMPLETION TIME*
*This estimate assumes full-time registration and pursuit of the degree. Actual completion times will vary and may be higher, depending on full- or part-time course registration, units transferred, and time to complete other degree requirements.
Provides an overview of music literature from the Middle Ages to the mid-twentieth century with concentrated analysis of representative works, using analytical techniques that fit each period.
Research Methodology & Bibliography
Introduces the many types of electronic and print bibliographic tools needed to pursue research in music, as well as research methods, citation practices, and ways to evaluate research.
Interdisciplinary Music Criticism & Cross-Cultural Aesthetics
Introduces the study of aesthetics, its historical basis and vocabulary of concepts as well as the application of these concepts specifically to music in the late eighteenth century.
Application of Music Technology I
Explores music technology, the basics of MIDI and audio, music notation software, digital audio workstations and sequencing software, and music sample libraries.
Romantic: 19th Century
Addresses the conceptual roots of romanticism, early uses of the term as well as its influence, the period of time customarily assigned to this “era” for the study of music history, and repertory.
Surveys concert music literature in Europe and the United States from approximately 1900 to the present, focusing on musical style and structure during this period and the many remarkable changes that occurred in the last century.
Areas of Concentration
Historical Performance Practices
All music students are required to take written and oral qualifying examinations at regularly scheduled, posted times during the academic year.
Participation and Attendance
All students are encouraged to take part in the performance groups of the Claremont Colleges.
Language and Research Tool Requirements
You can satisfy the research tools requirement by qualifying in:
One language – MA in musicology, composition, or instrumental performance
Two languages – MA in voice or choral conducting, DMA, and PhD
A good reading knowledge of the chosen language(s) with special regard to writings on musical subjects (German, French, or Italian if MA; German and either French, Italian, or Latin if PhD; any two of the four if DMA)
You can fulfill the language tool requirement by demonstrating competency at translating an approved language into English.
Recitals and Projects
All recitals and projects must be approved by the Music Department.
For those who write music, the culmination of their CGU music education is the opportunity to present an original composition. Though there is no strictly prescribed form, in most cases, work will involve orchestra or large ensemble (soloists, choral forces, or electronics as additional components are possibilities). Whether you write and perform a symphony or concerto, it’s the best way to test and establish your musical vision.
Faculty & Research
Professor of Music
Fred W. Smith and Grace Hobson Smith Chair in Music
Chair, Department of Music
Harpsichord, Historical performance practices, Baroque music
Piano, Fortepiano, 18th & 19th-century performance practices, 20th century atonal piano compositions, digital keyboard laboratory, the board of directors of Los Angeles Master Chorale: Education Committee and Gala Host Committee