Specialized Supplementary Courses
Elements of Conducting
CND 451, CND 452; 3 s.h./term
Introduction to the technique of leading larger ensembles, basic beat patterns, techniques of expression, and baton and score-reading skills. One semester required of all Bachelor of Music students.
Advanced Conducting (Spring)
CND 454; 2 s.h./term
Further study of conducting technique, score reading, including analysis of past and present conductors.
Performer as Teacher
CRS 401-402; 3 s.h./term
Today’s professional musician must go above and beyond the specialization of playing his or her instrument. Much more is required in a modern musician’s career beyond performing. This course introduces and develops the necessary skills to teach music one-on-one, in a classroom, and in an ensemble, and to communicate musical ideas to students of all levels.
THY 405, THY 406; 2 s.h./term
In the fall, the course intoduces the concepts of improvisation, one of the most essential skills for the performing musician. Students will explore the uses of improvisation in various eras throughout history. The ability to improvise develops confidence, freedom of expression, and the use of imagination in music making. The range of activities in this workshop includes solo and chamber improvisations in various styles from the eighteenth to the twenty-first centuries while incorporating a composer’s point of view.
For students with some improvisation experience, the spring semester focuses on developing one of the most essential skills for the performing musician. Topics include cadenzas, ornaments, creating variations, free improvisation, and more. Open to advanced instrumentalists with instructor’s permission.
All-School Project Analysis
MUL 311, MUL 312; 0 s.h./term
An in-depth analysis of one or two major works being performed by the Curtis Orchestra in the current academic year. Students will receive a full score for the work, which they can mark and keep at the end of the semester. Students will learn about the history and the context of the work, and do a complete analysis. Many students will go on to perform the work with significantly greater understanding. (Specific repertoire to be announced.)
THY 410; 2 s.h./term
Open to advanced instrumentalists with instructor’s permission. This class will be devoted to developing skills for writing period cadenzas for 18th and 19th century sonatas and concertos. The art of the improvisatory cadenza, so prominent in the Common-Practice era, warrants special emphasis due to the growing movement in period performing practices. In-depth analysis will provide insight into which elements contribute to a cadenza’s strength or weakness and uncover the relationship of each cadenza to the thematic and harmonic language of the given work. Students will compose cadenzas of various lengths to be performed and discussed in class, culminating in an end-of-semester recital.
Interpretive Analysis and Musicianship: Tonal Music (Fall) and Atonal Music (Spring)
THY 407, THY 408; 2 s.h./term
Open to advanced instrumentalists with instructor’s permission. This course employs music theory and analysis in tonal music (in the fall semester) and atonal music (in the spring semester) to develop practical principles of interpretation for the performer and listener. Listening assignments, discussions and written exercises will help students connect intuitive impressions of music with an objective understanding of the music's construction and design as found in common practice.
Music and Technology
SCI 317-318; 3 s.h./term
From electronic applications in composition, to platforms for broadcast/simulcast, to recording and the life cycles of production
and promotion, to the Internet and the infinite variety of AV possibilities it invites, having a basic to intermediate understanding of the dynamics of how music and technology meld to serve the art form is essential for Curtis students as they enter careers in the 21st-century.The course will provide students with a guided tour along the ever evolving and shared frontiers of music and technology and to provide some practical training while also stimulating creativity in their primary studies.
MUL 303-304; 2 s.h./term
CMP 011–012; 1 s.h./term
Fundamentals of music composition focusing on students’ own composed music. Students with experience as composers are welcome, though no experience is necessary for instruction. This course also includes form, analysis, and modern techniques; readings of student works; and possible performance opportunities.
Orchestration and Arranging for Non-Majors
THY 323*; 3 s.h.
This class examines the ranges, characteristics and uses of the orchestral instruments. Students will write original pieces or transcriptions for standard chamber ensembles including Woodwind Quintet, Brass Quintet, String Quintet and Percussion Duo. These assignments will be read and recorded. Students will also discuss problems of notation for each instrument and the correct methods of setting up a score and extracting parts.
THY 321*; 4 s.h.
A study of orchestral instruments – their ranges, capabilities, and uses in small ensembles – within historical, traditional, and contemporary contexts. Special attention is paid to score preparation and parts extraction. This course also explores traditional scoring practices and contemporary techniques.
KBD 411–412*; 1 s.h./term
Reading at the keyboard of selected movements, representing important styles and composers from 1750 to 1950, chosen from orchestral, chamber, choral, and operatic repertoire.
The Violin: Its History, Preservation, and Use
MHS 311–312*; 1 s.h.
A study of the history and development of the violin focusing on the major violinmakers from Italy, France, Germany, and England.
KBD 315–316; 1 s.h./term
Individual instruction in selected topics of musical studies or analysis.
Odd-numbered courses generally meet in the fall and even-numbered courses meet in the spring.
The designations "s.h." (semester hours) and "g.c." (graduate credits) indicate credit-hours given per term for undergraduate and graduate courses, respectively.
Yearlong, two-semester courses are designated by hyphenated course numbers. Students must successfully complete both semesters of required yearlong courses to satisfy the graduation requirement.
The symbol * indicates a course that is not offered every year.