Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2023

Course Description

Taken in the first semester at the DePauw School of Music, this course is the first class in both the Music Theory and Musicianship core curriculum sequences. As such, we will cover a great deal of ground in this course, preparing students with a wide variety of musical skills and knowledge. In this course we will not only learn to identify the musical patterns which music theory helps us to articulate, we will also create with those patterns. Composition and Improvisation will be a large part of this class, as will singing and ear-training practice, emphasizing both aural and written traditions of music-making. This class will familiarize students with some of the basics of music technology: notational software, digital audio workstations, and recording technologies. All of the software needed for this course will be free. Creative projects use technologies to instantiate and intertwine our theoretical knowledge with our aural skills. In this class we will directly confront the ways in which racism and colonialism, both historically and presently, have shaped music theory and pedagogy in our culture. We will think and converse deeply about how our own unique cultural backgrounds shape our musical perceptions and analyze the ways that the theoretical constructs we bring to bear on musical analysis are always incomplete and perspectival.