Critical and creative perspectives on music.
Study Music within a Liberal Arts Context
Music All Around Us
When you combine music and the broader liberal arts, amazing things can happen. At Oberlin, the College of Arts and Sciences and the Conservatory of Music share one campus. College and conservatory students take classes together, live together, eat together, and perform together.
Five interdivisional programs offer students in both the college and conservatory the chance to engage with music from a range of disciplinary perspectives. Each pathway offers a unique course of study encompassing both well-established and emerging fields.
Using case studies from around the world, this course will challenge how you think about music. Through interactive performance, critical listening, and musical analysis, we examine the diverse ways people think about and structure music. We also examine music as an inherently social act, illustrating how music is informed by - and conversely informs - historical, political, cultural, and economic processes, along with what music means to the people who make and engage with it.
- Taught by
- Jennifer Fraser
Sonic Arts in Society is a community-based learning course that brings innovative music technology workshops and programming-with an emphasis on interdisciplinary Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math (STEAM) activities-to community members of all ages. Students apply their creative aptitudes and technical skills to the development and implementation of workshops and programming tailored to the needs of the communities that they will serve.
- Taught by
- Abby Aresty
Tonic, dominant, leading-tone, subdominant, submediant, and supertonic triads; the dominant-seventh chord (including inversions); the leading-tone diminished seventh chord and the cadential six-four chord. Introduction to phrase and period structure. Analytical and writing skills are introduced and developed.
- Taught by
- Bryan Parkhurst
The first semester of a one-year survey of musical styles and forms cultivated by African Americans. First semester includes West African music and West African continuity in the American, early African American instrumental-vocal forms, and the social implications of African American music. Second semester includes later instrumental and vocal music (jazz, blues, rhythm and blues, gospel, soul, etc.) and important composers and performers of works in extended forms.
- Taught by
- Courtney-Savali Andrews
Exploring Vulnerability through Music
As part of a Winter Term project, Özüm Pamukçu ’23 returned home to Istanbul, where she composed, sang, recorded, and produced two original songs—one in Turkish and one in English. The project also afforded her time to learn to record using MIDI keyboards, improve her vocal mix and mastering skills, and use of Logic Pro X.
Music Theory and Biology
At Oberlin, Lisa Learman ‘16 was a biology and musical studies double major. The experience of studying science and music helped Lisa develop the creative as well as analytical thinking skills she is now putting into practice as a PhD student in the Cellular and Molecular Medicine program at Johns Hopkins University.
Fulbright to India
Musical studies major Sophia Bass ’20 was awarded a Fulbright research grant to study Carnatic music in India. After completing her study in India, the West Chicago, Illinois, native plans to attend graduate school to pursue a master’s degree in composition for film.