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Department of Composition

about

A distinguished faculty of internationally known composers empowers students with guidance and encouragement in the search of the student's individual voice and creative goals. Our students achieve at the highest level by creating cutting-edge work that explores a wide range of creative media and styles. Alumni continue our tradition of artistic excellence, holding teaching positions across the globe, performing and composing at the top of the field, and contributing in a meaningful way to a diverse range of communities.

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Composers in undergraduate and graduate programs enjoy premiere performances of their work through our recently revamped write HEAR / right NOW concert series, annual participation in the Midwest Composers Symposium (a forum for student composers from four schools), and concerts by University of Michigan ensembles. Students also have access to the incredible technological resources of the School, including the Duderstadt Audio Studio and the brand new Music Technology Lab.

Our composers benefit from the EXCEL Program, which provides entrepreneurship training and career services with the goal of enabling all students to forge a viable career by exploring, developing and leveraging their talents, training, skills, and ambitions.

All of these factors combine to make the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance one of the country's most important centers for the training of young composers.

 

faculty

guest composers & past faculty

In addition to the regular faculty, students have the opportunity to work with a variety of eminent composers each semester.

news

image for Professor Emeritus Leslie Bassett Has Died
Professor Emeritus Leslie Bassett Has Died

The Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, who taught at SMTD for 40 years, passed away on February 4, 2016 at age 93. more

image for SMTD’s Collage Concert XXXIX
SMTD’s Collage Concert XXXIX

The most anticipated SMTD event of every year, the Collage Concert is a non-stop evening of virtuosity, featuring students from every performance discipline in a riveting display of talent, made even more exciting by unique ensembles, exhilarating repertoire, and unexpected juxtapositions of acts. more

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image for John Luther Adams visits SMTD as speaker and mentor
John Luther Adams visits SMTD as speaker and mentor

Composer John Luther Adams, "one of the most original musical thinkers of the century," will be in residence and USO will perform his Pulitzer and Grammy-winning Become Ocean. more

image for NY Philharmonic Residency Details Announced
NY Philharmonic Residency Details Announced

SMTD, UMS, and the New York Philharmonic announce the full details of the upcoming New York Philharmonic Residency in October.  more

Moore Building's new Brehm Pavilion (photo: Michigan Photography, Eric Bronson)
E.V. Moore Building reopens following $29.5 million renovation and expansion

SMTD's Earl V. Moore Building reopens, introduces brand new Brehm Pavilion. more

William and Delores Brehm (photo by Mark Mastropietro)
SMTD Receives $1 Million Gift for Pianos From William and Delores Brehm

Lead donors to the Moore Building renovation and expansion make additional gift to outfit the building with new pianos.  more

 

events

SMTD logo for eventStudent Composers’ Concert

Monday, February 15 - 8:00pm
Earl V. Moore Building, Britton Recital Hall
Free - no tickets required
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image for Panel Discussion: Dream of the Red Chamber opera projectPanel Discussion: Dream of the Red Chamber opera project

Thursday, February 18 - 4:45pm
Walgreen Drama Center, Stamps Auditorium
Free - no tickets required
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image for William Bolcom Residency in Composition: JACK Quartet Master ClassWilliam Bolcom Residency in Composition: JACK Quartet Master Class

Monday, March 7 - 5:00pm
Walgreen Drama Center, Stamps Auditorium
Free - no tickets required
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image for William Bolcom Residency in Composition: JACK Quartet RecitalWilliam Bolcom Residency in Composition: JACK Quartet Recital

Tuesday, March 8 - 8:00pm
Walgreen Drama Center, Stamps Auditorium
Free - no tickets required
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Michael Daugherty, Professor of Composition
Evan Chambers, Professor and Chair of CompositionRoshanne Etezady, Lecturer in CompositionKristin Kuster, professor of compositionErik Santos, Associate Professor of Composition and Director, Electronic Music StudioPaul Schoenfield, Professor of CompositionBright Sheng, Leonard Bernstein Distinguished University Professor of Composition
"Michigan, for me, was incredible. I worked with everyone..... There are many schools that have great teachers but few where you can work with them intensively. I was not shy about approaching them, but there was something about Michigan that made me feel that I could."
Derek Bermel, MM Composition 1993 & DMA Composition 1997

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Photography Credits:

U-M Photo Services

Joe Welsh

Peter Smith

David Smith

Glen Behring

Tom Bower

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