Scholarly and Professional Studies

USC Thornton Scholarly and Professional Studies Division encompasses commitments to scholarly studies and professional music performance.

The strong programs of study that this division supports, together with interdisciplinary partnerships between academics and performance, provide the best kind of professional preparation in today’s complex cultural settings.

The key attributes of the division:

  • An environment in which innovation is constant, resilience trumps stability, and where personal creativity, courage, and a sense of possibility are the keys to success
  • Interdisciplinary partnerships coupled with resources available from one of the top research universities in the country
  • The most relevant and effective professional preparation to create leaders in today’s complex cultural settings

“Welcome to all considering a connection to the Scholarly and Professional Studies Division. If you are interested in one or more of the outstanding programs in this Division, I hope you will contact us for more information about how your studies might be supported by work here.”

Peter Webster
Vice Dean
Scholarly and Professional Studies
event calendar

Upcoming events

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  • USC Thornton Concert Jazz Orchestra

    Music director Jason Goldman leads the Concert Jazz Orchestra in an evening of big band standards and original compositions.

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Classical Guitar Masterclass with Tilman Hoppstock

    German guitarist Tilman Hoppstock, noted for his interpretations of Bach, presents a masterclass in classical guitar performance.

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • Music@RushHour: The Works of Hanna Kulenty

    Students Alexander Zhu, piano and Xander Knecht, violin present a program of music by renowned Polish composer, Dr. Hanna Kulenty, who will also speak about and perform her own music during the concert. A leading gure on the contemporary music scene, Dr. Kulenty is a laureate of the UNESCO International Rostrum of Composers and her works are championed by such ensembles as the Kronos Quartet, among others. Skip the traffic and enjoy a free concert of music by USC Thornton students. A free reception follows the performance.

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • PPP+: Paganini, Popper, Piatti, and more

    Strings students perform virtuosic solo works, including Paganini caprices, Ernst caprices, Popper etudes, Piatti caprices, and other showpieces. Students showcase their talents in a friendly and social environment, followed by a reception.

    MacDonald Recital Hall (MUS)

  • Three Laureates: Poets of the New California

    U.S. Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera, California Poet Laureate and Arts Leadership faculty member Dana Gioia, and Los Angeles Poet Laureate Robin Coste Lewis come together on the Bovard stage for a reading and discussion about poetry and the role of place—in particular, the many places of California—in their creative work. The son of farmworkers, Herrera spent his early years living from crop to crop in California’s San Joaquin and Salinas valleys, went to high school in San Diego, attended college at UCLA during the Chicano movement, and now lives in Fresno, California. Dana Gioia grew up in Hawthorne, California, and spent his college years at Stanford. And National Book Award winner Robin Coste Lewis is from Compton. In a rare joint event, these three highly decorated and deeply rooted California poets will reflect upon how poetry and the written word contribute to our shared yet varied sense of place and community. Presented by USC Visions and Voices: The Arts and Humanities Initiative.

    Bovard Auditorium (ADM)

  • Vive La France: A Collaborative Chamber Music Recital

    Karen Dreyfus, director of chamber music at Thornton, leads faculty and students of the Division of Classical Performance and Composition in a program of French chamber music, featuring the Poulenc Trio, Saint-Saens Septet, and Franck Piano Quintet. Faculty performers include Bernadene Blaha, Glenn Dicterow, Kevin Fitz-Gerald, Ben Hong, Thomas Hooten, Bing Wang, and Michele Zukovsky. They will be joined by Thornton students Lieza Hansen, Coleman Itkoff, Mann-Wen Lo, Sam Shukan, Justin Woo, and more.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Jazz Night

    Students from Thornton's jazz programs showcase contemporary jazz works at Carson Center. Please note that, due to the closure of Ground Zero Performance Café, this event has been relocated to Carson Center (CTV).

    Carson Center (CTV)

  • Vocal Masterclass with Ana Maria Martinez

    Soprano Ana Maria Martinez, currently appearing in LA Opera's production of Carmen, presents a masterclass for Thornton Vocal Arts majors. Martinez enjoys an international performing career that spans the world's most important opera houses and concert halls.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Music@RushHour: The Amicus Duo Celebrates Gay Composers

    Students Alin Melik-Adamyan, piano, and Coleman Itzko, cello, bring their award- winning duo back to Music@RushHour to present a program of all gay composers. Included in the program will be works from Ethel Smyth, Benjamin Britten, Liebermann, and Tchaikovsky. Skip the traffic and enjoy a free concert of music by USC Thornton students. A free reception follows the performance.

    Ramo Recital Hall (BMH)

  • Strings Open Performance Evening

    Students of Thornton's Strings program present an evening of solo and chamber performances.

    MacDonald Recital Hall (MUS)

  • Thornton Edge

    Donald Crockett leads Thornton Edge, Thornton’s new music group, in a program featuring recent music for voice and ensemble, including works by David Lang and Thornton student composer and vocalist, Tamzin Elliott.

    Newman Recital Hall (AHF)

  • Jazz Night featuring the Thornton Jazz Orchestra

    The USC Thornton Jazz Orchestra, led by music director Bob Mintzer, presents an evening of standards and original compositions as part of an ongoing series of contemporary jazz. Please note that, due to the closure of Ground Zero Performance Café, this event has been relocated to Carson Center (CTV).

    Carson Center (CTV)

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