Our Division of Contemporary Music has three areas of study—degrees in both composition and electronic and computer music, as well as performance-based work in nationally-recognized contemporary music ensembles—giving students the opportunity to hone their technical skills while exploring an enormous range of contemporary and new music.
Our faculty comprises outstanding teachers, conductors, and composers who are devoted primarily to undergraduate education. They provide individual instruction, allowing opportunities for critique and performance, and spend generous amounts of time with their students via lessons, coaching, mentoring, and more.View Faculty
The Division of Contemporary Music features intensive coaching and faculty mentoring that encourages students to hone their musical skills and explore means of expression though exposure to a wide range of music genres.
Composition faculty work with aspiring young composers to broaden their skills to increase their facility in presenting their musical ideas with clarity through written notation. Composition students at Oberlin have ample opportunities with performers who present their pieces through formal and informal performances.
Technology in Music and Related Arts (TIMARA) is an important hub between the Conservatory and College of Arts and Sciences. Current TIMARA students work in richly diverse media, including live electronics, acoustic composition, multi-channel fixed media, video, music for dance, sound design for theater and film, research in acoustics and psychoacoustics, software development, hardware design, performance art, and soundscape composition. Many pursue interdisciplinary interests both within the major and as part of Oberlin’s double-degree program, through which TIMARA students study in fields such as computer science, physics, studio art, dance, environmental studies, philosophy, and cinema studies.
The performance of contemporary classical and new music is enthusiastically embraced at Oberlin. The school has served as a fertile training ground for scores of new music performers and groundbreaking ensembles, including the multiple Grammy Award-winning sextet Eighth Blackbird and the International Contemporary Ensemble. In performances throughout the academic year, the Contemporary Music Ensemble and Sinfonietta perform music genres, from minimalism to serialism, and from electronic to cross genre, mixed media, and beyond.