About the Program

The composition program at the University of North Texas is one of the largest and most diverse in the nation, with approximately 70 composition students and seven faculty members representing a variety of compositional aesthetics and approaches. Regular guest composer residencies, visiting new music specialists, and dozens of events each year provide students with a rich educational and artistic experience.

An interdisciplinary center within UNT’s Division of Composition Studies, the Center for Experimental Music & Intermedia (CEMI) provides a unique environment for the exploration of time-based arts and is internationally renowned for its long history of innovation, particularly in the realm of electroacoustic music. Students, faculty, guests, and collaborators from a variety of disciplines engage in research, creation, and performance in CEMI’s six production studios and the Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater.

Music Now is the weekly composition departmental meeting, an open forum for the exchange of ideas and information about the creation, performance, and understanding of recent music. These forums, which are typically scheduled Mondays at 11:00-11:50 am, feature presentations by UNT faculty and students as well as visiting composers, scholars, and interpreters of new music.

Nova is the new music ensemble of the University of North Texas. In keeping with its mission to present a diversity of musical, aesthetic, and cultural experiences, Nova’s repertoire ranges from 20th century classics to works that incorporate the latest musical innovations. Students in the ensemble have opportunities to work with faculty and guest composers and are occasionally joined by faculty and guest performers. Performances and workshops have included music by composition students as well.

The Spectrum concert series features new solo and chamber works for instruments and voices, often utilizing new technologies and intermedia. These programs are presented throughout the fall and spring semesters, and are listed in the calendar section of this website.

The Composers Forum is a student organization devoted to coordinating performances and bringing new works to public attention. The organization was formed to foster the spirit of collaboration between composers, performers, and artists of all kinds throughout the UNT community.

The Initiative for Advanced Research in Technology and the Arts (iARTA) is an interdisciplinary research cluster represented by faculty from across a wide spectrum of the arts, engineering and sciences. iARTA activities include scholarship, creative research and technical development at the leading edges of emergent media practice; the resulting research areas are represented by diverse forms such as telematic performance, immersive installation, robotic sculpture, mobile networks, and art-science collaboration. The cluster also publishes the MOEBIUS Journal, which explores the intersection of theory and practice in electronic arts.

2014-15 Guest Artists

Upcoming Events

  • Oct
    26
    Student Recital
    • Eric Evans Master's Thesis Performance (in Goolsby Chapel)
    • 9:00pm
  • Oct
    27
    Music Now
    • Colloquium — sponsored by Composers Forum
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Nov
    03
    Music Now
    • Claudia Howard Queen: Composer/Choreographer Collaborations
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Nov
    10
    Music Now
    • Andrew May — "Synchromorphology: an approach to music theory and practice"
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Nov
    10
    Spectrum
    • New works from North Texas—sponsored by Composers Forum
    • Recital Hall
    • 8:00pm

Recent Division News

  • The Unspoken Geography: FEAR by alumna composer Christina Rusnak (MA 2010) was performed 2 March 2013 at the 12th Annual CSUF New Music Festival: Voice in the 21st Century. On 23 July 2013, Rusnak's Teklanika, a work created in Denali National Park and Yukon Charley National Preserve, was performed at the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival. Going Rogue for horn trio will be premiered on 18 October 2013, and Adriana for solo flute will be performed on 15 November 2013, both in Portland, Oregon. Ms.

  • Systasis, an electroacoustic work by composition alumnus Dave Gedosh (DMA 2009) was selected as a finalist for the Fresh Minds Festival at Texas A & M University. Gedosh's Train Song was selected for the SEAMUS CD Vol 23 and was recently programmed at Last Friday Listening Room at UCSD by Tom Erbe, who is also programming the piece for a performance at Fort Mason in San Francisco as part of the Sweet Thunder Electro-Acoustic Music Festival in April 2014

  • Eleven UNT-affiliated composers were selected to participate in the SEAMUS 2014 Conference at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, 27-29 March 2014: faculty composer Jon Nelson; student composers Stephen Lucas, Mark Oliveiro, Clay Allen, and Jen Hill; alumni composers Paul Thomas, Greg Dixon, Eli Fieldsteel, Chapman Welch, and Peter McCulloch; and former faculty composer Butch Rovan.

  • Panayiotis Kokoras, Assistant Professor of Composition Studies, has been awarded second prize (first prize not awarded) at the prestigious Kazimierz Serocki 13th International Composers’ Competition 2013 for his composition Susurrus for piano, violin and cello. The prize consists of $2500 US and a concert of the winners, co-organized with the Polish Radio Channel 2, will take place on the 28 November 2013 in Lutoslawski Polish Radio Concert Hall in Warsaw.

  • Cantus Curatio VI (Healing Melody VI) for cello solo and EGO for bass trombone and piano by alumna composer Da Jeong Choi (PhD 2011) were presented at the 19th Sydney Biennale titled "On Reason and Emotion" (21 March - 9 June 2014 in Sydney, Australia), which featured the work of 51 artists from 32 countries.

  • Doctoral composer Dan Tramte has had electroacoustic works selected for presentation at two international conferences in August of 2013: Nomos Delta will be presented at Festival Futura (Crest, France), and e u t h a n a s i a will be presented at ISSTC 2013 (Dublin, Ireland). Dan will be traveling to Europe to present his works at these festivals.

  • Eleven UNT-affiliated composers were selected to participate in the SEAMUS 2014 Conference at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, 27-29 March 2014: faculty composer Jon Nelson; student composers Stephen Lucas, Mark Oliveiro, Clay Allen, and Jen Hill; alumni composers Paul Thomas, Greg Dixon, Eli Fieldsteel, Chapman Welch, and Peter McCulloch; and former faculty composer Butch Rovan.

  • Oregon State Parks selected Alumna composer Christina Rusnak (MA 2010) to compose a work for the new Cottonwood Canyon State Park. Canyon Voices explores the natural and cultural heritage of the John Day River basin. In August 2014, The Life of Ashes, exploring Mt. Adams through the lens of wildfire, was premiered in Hood River Oregon commemorating the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act.

  • Senior composition student Daniel Sabzghabaei was recently selected as a finalist in the 2014 SCI/ASCAP Student Commission Competition for his piece Four Short Dreams for chamber ensemble and tape. His piece was selected from a pool of about 200 applicants and represented region 6 (Southern USA) in the final round of selection.

  • Improbable Encounters, a collection of works by faculty composer Joseph Klein, will be released on the innova label on 28 January 2014. The 2-disc album (CD and DVD) includes solo, chamber, and intermedia works composed over the past 30 years, and features performances by UNT faculty members Elizabeth McNutt, Eric Nestler, Christopher Deane, and Felix Olschofka.