Historical Musicology

Students receive training in the analysis and interpretation of musical style through all of the musical eras. The historical, cultural, and social contexts of music are examined through the use of primary sources.

Sample Courses

MUS 244. Music History I: Medieval through Baroque (4 credit hours)

This course offers a survey of sacred and secular music from Antiquity to 1750. Students will examine the origins of many musical conventions that we take for granted, such as meter, musical notation, polyphony, and tonality, and will learn about the composers and theorists responsible for these innovations.

MUS 345. Music History II: Classical and Romantic (4 credit hours)

Students will consider how Classical composers contributed to Western Art Music by inventing or codifying some of the most enduring genres and forms and by creating the Galant style. We will then explore how Romantic composers transformed the genres, forms, and harmonic language inherited from Classical composers.

MUS 346. Music History III: Post-1900 Music and World Music (4 credit hours)

One half of the course examines major trends in twentieth- and twenty-first century Western Art Music and American vernacular music, including the weakening of tonality and the alternative systems that composers introduced. The other half introduces the music of several non-Western cultures, focusing on the instruments, methods of organizing music, performance contexts, and the significance and meaning of music-making in each culture.