Courses of Study

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Chair, Associate Professor Steven Nuss
Professors Paul Machlin and Steven Saunders; Associate Professors Todd Borgerding, Jonathan Hallstrom, and Steven Nuss; Visiting Assistant Professor Lily Funahashi; Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow Kariann Goldschmitt; Faculty Fellow Shannon Chase; Artist in Residence Wynn Yamami

The Colby Music Department integrates academic instruction in music with a broad range of performance opportunities. Both the music major and the music minor include Western music history, tonal and post-tonal analysis, and applied music, while allowing students flexibility to emphasize composition, theory, history, performance, or popular music. Course offerings range from music history and theory to musicianship, conducting, composition, world music, jazz history, and American popular music. Music students acquire a broad range of critical, analytical, and performing skills, preparing them for careers in higher education, performance, teaching, arts management, librarianship, and music technology, as well as fields outside music that demand abstract reasoning, aesthetic sensitivity, and analytical skill.

The Music Department is housed in the Bixler Art and Music Center, whose facilities include a 394-seat recital hall, a large band/orchestra rehearsal room, a state-of-the-art electronic music studio, classrooms, two seminar rooms, faculty offices, and practice rooms. Performances are scheduled in Given Auditorium  and in Lorimer Chapel. In addition to its collection of books, scores, and performing editions, the art and music library includes a listening center, a large collection of CDs, DVDs, and other recordings, a computer cluster, scanning and digital sound-processing facilities, a seminar/study room, and resource materials for curricular and recreational needs.
Requirements for the Major in Music
Music 111, 181, 182, 184, 241, 242, 281, 282, 341, and 493 or 494; one elective in music at the 200 level or higher; two semesters of lessons and two semesters of ensemble participation.

The point scale for retention of the major applies to all courses in music. No requirement for the major may be taken satisfactory/unsatisfactory.
Requirements for the Minor in Music
Music 111, 181, 182; one semester of music history chosen from Music 241, 242, 341; two four-credit music courses at the 200 level or higher (or one 200-level course and Music 184); and two semesters of applied music (both of which must be taken on the same instrument). The College does not subsidize the cost of lessons for minors. For additional information concerning applied music options, refer to the statement below.
Honors in Music
An honors program is available to students majoring in music who have a 3.25 overall grade point average and a 3.50 average in the major. In addition to fulfilling the requirements for the music major, honors students must take one additional course in music, approved by the department, at the 300 level or above; they must also complete the honors sequence (Music 483, 484) in one of four areas (analysis, history, performance, or theory/composition). During the second semester of the junior year, students seeking admission to the honors program submit a formal proposal outlining their proposed research or creative project to the department for approval.
Applied Music
Private lessons in voice and a variety of instruments are available, with or without academic credit (see Music 091, 191). Music 153 or Music 181 fulfills the co-requisite for graded credit in Music 191 and 193. Fees for lessons, billed through the College business office, depend upon the number of credits elected; consult the Music Department for specific charges. By electing any applied music, the student incurs a responsibility for the appropriate fee. Students electing Music 091 or 191 or taking extracurricular instruction must consult the applied music coordinator. Individual lessons/times are scheduled in consultation with the appropriate applied music associate.

Instruction in applied music is also available in January and may satisfy a January Program requirement; no academic credit for applied music may be earned in January. Music majors, beginning in the first semester of their sophomore year, are eligible for six semesters of subsidized instruction in applied music (Music 191 for two credits) in the instrument of their choice provided they continue to make satisfactory progress in the major. Majors in good standing are also eligible for an additional four semesters of subsidized instruction on a second instrument; however, the College will not fund more than two instruments per semester. Students should elect piano as their second instrument until they successfully complete Music 184 (Musicianship).