Our faculty members are leaders in their fields, with strong national and international reputations, and substantial publication records. They are dedicated teachers who incorporate well-established as well as innovative approaches in the classroom. At the graduate level, the musicology and music theory areas promote a holistic approach to instruction, integrating the disciplines in creative ways, all in an effort to encourage students to seek higher levels of academic excellence. Faculty members work closely with students, offering extensive personal attention that enables them to develop and refine their skills as musicians, writers, thinkers, scholars, and teachers.
Musicology and Music Theory
The music history undergraduate curriculum focuses on the attainment of a broad knowledge of music from all periods. Music repertoire is examined in its social, cultural, political, and aesthetic context. At the graduate level, students approach the study of music by using a wide range of musicological methodologies and by developing advanced research skills. We prepare students for doctoral study in musicology or ethnomusicology, help them acquire the skills they need to teach in an undergraduate music history curriculum, or strengthen their musicianship as composers, conductors, music educators, and performers.
The musicology area includes faculty members who offer diverse music historical approaches and whose research interests span all periods of Western music. Areas of specialty include performance practice, musical aesthetics, manuscript studies, film music, interdisciplinary studies, and the music of Beethoven, Buxtehude, Haydn, Mahler, Monteverdi, Schoenberg, and R. Strauss. Faculty members hold doctoral degrees in musicology from Cornell University, Duke University, and Yale University.
The music theory area offers outstanding instruction for Penn State undergraduate music majors in the intellectual and aural comprehension of the theoretical elements of music. At the graduate level, we emphasize the attainment of advanced musicals skills necessary to help prepare students to pursue the Ph.D. degree in music theory, teach in an undergraduate music theory curriculum, or strengthen their musicianship as composers, conductors, music educators, and performers. The music theory area includes faculty members with diverse research specialties, including eighteenth- and nineteenth–century form and style, Schenkerian analysis, post-tonal analysis, musical aesthetics, film music, jazz theory and performance, popular music, music theory pedagogy, and the music of composers such as Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Messiaen, and Stravinsky.
Faculty members hold doctoral degrees in music theory from the Florida State University, Indiana University, the University of Michigan, the University of Wisconsin, and Yale University.