Course information found here includes all permanent offerings and is updated regularly whenever Academic Senate approves changes. For historical information, see the Course Catalogs. For actual course availability in any given term, use Course Search in the Portal.
Music lessons (MUSI 010-MUSI 044) are domain 2A, requires the consent of the instructor, and requires an additional course fee. Please refer to the Portal for further details.
- [MUSI 010] Composition (.25)
- [MUSI 011] Conducting (.25)
- [MUSI 012] Voice (.25)
- [MUSI 013] Piano (.25)
- [MUSI 015] Harpsichord (.25)
- [MUSI 016] Organ (.25)
- [MUSI 018] Guitar (.25)
- [MUSI 020] Recorder (.25)
- [MUSI 021] Flute (.25)
- [MUSI 022] Oboe (.25)
- [MUSI 023] Clarinet (.25)
- [MUSI 024] Bassoon (.25)
- [MUSI 025] Saxophone (.25)
- [MUSI 026] Introduction to Jazz Improvisation (.25)
- [MUSI 031] Horn (.25)
- [MUSI 032] Trumpet (.25)
- [MUSI 033] Trombone (.25)
- [MUSI 034] Tuba (.25)
- [MUSI 035] Percussion (.25)
- [MUSI 041] Violin (.25)
- [MUSI 042] Viola (.25)
- [MUSI 043] Cello (.25)
- [MUSI 044] String Bass (.25)
A large choral ensemble composed of Beloit College students, faculty, staff, and members of the surrounding community. Membership is open to all students, placement hearing by director. (2A)
Groups are formed each semester in consultation with faculty. Common are string quartets, cello ensemble, and mixed groups of strings and winds, sometimes with piano or harpsichord. Requires four members. (2A)
An innovative string ensemble (violin, viola, cello, bass) that explores non-conventional genres for strings. This course includes but is not limited to the following styles: jazz, blues, folk, bluegrass, rock, pop, urban, classical, experimental, and world musics. Students are encouraged to engage through performance, group collaboration, and improvisation, with opportunities for arranging and composition. All repertoire, compositions, and arrangements are chosen or adapted to best utilize the ensemble’s strengths while challenging each member’s abilities at whatever level they may be. The course is open to all students but some familiarity with the instrument and music fundamentals is recommended. Prior improvisational skills and theory background are not required. Note-reading ability recommended but not required. (2A)
Program and activities depend on the interests of the participants. Repertoire consists of a variety of styles, including music of the big bands; swing, jazz, and blues. Open to all members of Beloit College. (2A)
Gives students an opportunity to explore recorder music from the medieval to the modern. Open by consent of instructor. (2A)
A select vocal ensemble that performs quality choral literature of all styles and historical periods. The ensemble is devoted to the development of comprehensive musicianship, choral singing, and fundamental musical skills. Membership is open to all students through audition. (2A)
Group is formed each semester in consultation with faculty. Traditional woodwind instrumentation, performs mostly classical music. (2A)
Consists of students and community members. Performs a large variety of classical and modern music. Open to all students, faculty, staff, and members of the surrounding community. No audition required. Placement hearing by director. (2A)
Usually a quartet, performs all styles of music from jazz to classical. (2A)
Open to all percussionists. Experience is desired but not essential. A complete collection of instruments, including all mallet instruments, is available. (2A)
Group works as a large ensemble and as smaller duos and trios. Mostly classical repertoire, students are encouraged to suggest other genres. (2A)
Open to the music and non-music major at Beloit College. The ensemble provides students with the opportunity to develop rehearsal and performance skills in jazz through interaction with other musicians in a small group setting. Emphasis is placed on improvisation, arranging, and music theory. The ensemble usually consists of frontline instruments (saxophone, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, flute), comping instruments (piano, guitar, vibraphone), bass, and drums. Each semester we explore the music from the Blue Note, Riverside, Prestige or Impulse labels. Jazz combo meets once a week and culminates by performing one or two concerts at the end of the semester. Students need to be able to read music and improvise. (2A) Prerequisite: Approval by the instructor is needed to be in this ensemble.
This ensemble features collaborative performance and installation projects among students of all artistic disciplines—writers, actors, dancers, musicians, visual and multimedia artists, and creative students of all types are encouraged to join. Weekly readings and discussion are coupled with labs during which students experiment with unfamiliar media and unconventional approaches to familiar ones. Students form several collaborative partnerships, each featuring unique interdisciplinary combinations, through which members will explore ways to extend their expressive capabilities. Students arrange or create original performance or installation pieces, taking projects from conception, through planning, development and workshopping, rehearsals, all the way to producing the culminating event. All styles and skill levels are welcome. Prerequisite: willingness to experiment with unfamiliar creative practices and collaborate with other artists. Contact the director for the application. (2A) (Also listed as MDST 276, THDA 276, ART 176.) Offered each spring. May be repeated ONCE for credit.
This course offers individualized piano instruction in a group setting. Students of all skill levels are welcome, but it is particularly targeted to those with little or no piano background. Reading skills are developed, while also increasing the student’s familiarity with basic musical terms and directions. For those students with more extensive background, there is flexibility regarding choice of repertoire to achieve these goals. This is an excellent way to prepare for higher level courses and/or participation in ensembles offered by the music department. This course may be taken twice for credit. (2A)
This course explores how and why it is that we, as individuals and communities, read, write, and interpret histories to justify our love of or identification with musics and sounds. The purpose of this class is to learn how we can use music history (including the methods and tools of musicology and music historiography) to empower and liberate our sense of self, our identities, our communities, and our values. (5T) (Also listed as Critical Identity Studies 142 and History 211.) Offered each fall semester.
Open to all students, this introductory course comprises two integrated components: the development of music theory skills alongside the conceptual investigation of sound and music. Developed through lectures and lab sections, skills include basic experience with notation, rhythm, chords, keys, transposition, and tonal function. Readings and class discussions take us beyond either the notes on the page or tracks from a playlist as we study how musical experiences are shaped by intersecting social, political, economic, and historical influences. Topics might include the exploration of listening, performance, improvisation, notation, psychoacoustics, temporality, and music’s intersection with the body, race, gender, and class. Skills homework and readings are assigned weekly. (1S) Offered each semester.
These courses focus on the study of music as examined in light of another discipline and, inversely, how the other discipline can be understood more critically when analyzed through the lens of music. Recently offered examples of topics include Music in the Third Reich, Music and Psychology, Entrepreneurial Thinking in the Arts, and Music and Authenticity. Offered each semester.
These courses explore various topics in sound studies and composition. Possible topics include harmony and counterpoint, soundscapes, music and shape, recording and editing techniques, improvisation, the physics of music, or music and cognition. Offered each semester.
Investigating unique approaches to creating music, this course includes topics such as an Introduction to Music Composition, Songwriting, Experiments in Sound, Arranging, and Sounding Ecologies. No prior experience in composition is required though students should have facility with at least one musical medium including an instrument/voice, electronic music, and/or musical notation. Class meetings incorporate discussion, analysis, listening, and workshopping of works in progress. Additional one-on-one meetings are periodically scheduled. A culminating concert features original works by each student. May be repeated for credit if topic is different. (2A) Prerequisite: Music 170 or consent of instructor.
For students looking to develop skills in composing and songwriting, this course blends lessons in music theory and compositional techniques with creative projects in students’ chosen musical styles and mediums. Topics include crafting melody, harmony, and rhythm; developing core musical ideas; and designing individualized creative processes. Returning students investigate instrumentation, voice-leading, form, and markers of musical genres. Class sessions include listening, analysis, discussion, and workshopping. Assignments include both guided compositions using specific techniques and student-designed projects. Students may work in any style as they are also encouraged to explore new territory. Culminating concert features a new piece by each student. May be taken twice for credit. (2A) Prerequisite: Music 170 or permission of instructor.
This course instructs students in the rudimentary techniques of sound recording. The course offers students the opportunity to explore the many different techniques of recording, both live and in studio. Aside from recording techniques, the course also offers the student techniques in editing. (2A) Prerequisite: sophomore standing or consent of instructor.
A continuation of MUSI 170 for music students who seek to improve their facility with harmony, notation, score-reading, analysis, arranging, and musicianship skills, this course integrates music theory and musical practice. Students apply techniques from 16th-century counterpoint and tonal harmony through model compositions and original arrangements, ranging from the style of Palestrina to contemporary popular music. Theoretical concepts are exercised through the rigorous practice of musicianship skills, including sight-singing, dictation, and keyboard harmony. Workload includes weekly written assignments and projects in analysis and composing/arranging; regular independent skills practice is essential to prepare for musicianship tests. Students should have some facility with an instrument and/or voice. Prior keyboard experience is not required. (1S) Prerequisite: Music 170, placement test, or permission of instructor. Offered every three semesters.
This course allows students to synthesize materials and ideas from their previous three years as they create the foundation for a final creative project (e.g. research paper, composition, performance, sound recording, etc.). Under the guidance of multiple faculty, students are required to present their work regularly and, in particular, learn how to sell, persuade, and share with colleagues from different backgrounds the significance of their central argument, interpretation, or musical vision. (CP) Offered each fall. Prerequisite: junior or senior standing and consent of instructor.
This course provides a culminating experience in any area of music study. Students will work in close consultation with a music faculty advisor; they will be given the opportunity to experience musical scholarship through original research, preparation of performance, or original composition. Prerequisite: senior standing and consent of instructor.
Individual work outside the scope of the regular course offerings of the music department. Prerequisite: sophomore standing.
Work with faculty in classroom instruction. Graded credit/no credit.