Composition

Composition

Overview

The composers on the USC Thornton faculty are outstanding members of the international musical community, with major commissions, awards, recordings and residencies among the faculty’s many accolades. Composition students, among the finest in the country, regularly win national awards and commissions, including: ASCAP and BMI awards, New York Symphony Orchestra First Music commissions, Aspen fellowships, American Composers Orchestra and Minnesota Orchestra reading sessions, among many others.

The Composition department emphasizes performance opportunities for student composers. Student works are premiered at Contemporary Music Ensemble concerts, student recitals, and at the annual New Music for Orchestra concert – an event which has premiered over 200 USC Thornton student orchestral works. The USC Thornton choruses, Wind Ensemble, Percussion Ensemble and chamber music program provide composition students with significant reading and performance opportunities.

Our department’s curriculum offers thorough training in composition, musicianship, theory, analysis, orchestration and counterpoint. Electives in electronic and computer music are also available. Students who successfully complete our BM degree are guaranteed acceptance into the graduate certificate program in Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television.

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Upcoming events

  • Faculty Recital: Sarah Gibson & HOCKET

    Composition faculty member Sarah Gibson presents HOCKET, a piano-duo collaboration with alumnus Thomas Kotcheff, in a program featuring two world premieres by Thornton composers. The program will feature the premiere of a new work by faculty composer Donald Crockett, music by Stephen Hartke, and more.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Thornton Edge

    Donald Crockett leads the Thornton Edge new music ensemble in a program of contemporary works by distinguished British and American composers. The performance will feature Harrison Birtwistle's Carmen Arcadiae Mechanicae Perpetuum and Breakfast Rhythms by Joan Tower.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • USC Thornton Symphony: New Music for Orchestra

    Donald Crockett, chair of the Composition program, leads the USC Thornton Symphony in this annual concert featuring original works by student composers. Over the past 25 years, the New Music for Orchestra (NMO) event has premiered more than 125 compositions, often leading to professional commissions and international recognition.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • Thornton Edge

    The Thornton Edge new music ensemble presents a major work by Julian Anderson, Van Gogh Blue, and a world premiere by USC Thornton student Daniel Temkin.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Composition Showcase

    The Composition department presents two concerts featuring new solo, chamber and vocal works by student composers. The celebrated program has included Pulitzer Prize finalists and major award winners among its recent alumni. The first program will take place at 3:00 PM and the second at 7:00 PM

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Composition Showcase

    The Composition department presents two concerts featuring new solo, chamber and vocal works by student composers. The celebrated program has included Pulitzer Prize finalists and major award winners among its recent alumni. The first program will take place at 3:00 PM and the second at 7:00 PM

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)


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