Music: Composition & Theory

  • CFA MT 101: Music Theory 1
    Elements of tonal music are explored through listening, writing, improvisation, and analytical work. The course investigates the structure and usage of triads, seventh chords, and basic cadence types. An introduction to general voice-leading principles will be covered through figured-bass exercises and harmonization of tunes. Formal structures such as motive, phrase, period, and sentence will be introduced. A keyboard-harmony component will be covered in separate weekly meetings.
  • CFA MT 102: Music Theory 2
    A continued study of tonal music is approached through listening, writing, improvisation, and analytical work. The course explores the structure and usage of secondary functions, the concepts of tonicization and modulation to closely related keys. Continued work in applying general voice-leading principles will be covered through figured-bass exercises and harmonization of melodies. Formal structures such as binary, ternary, and rondo will be introduced. A keyboard- harmony component will be covered in separate weekly meetings.
  • CFA MT 105: Elements of Music Theory
    Elements of Music Theory (CFA MT105) provides a creative introduction to the foundational principles of musical structure. Using a multi-modal approach, combining in-class performance exercises, listening, composition, keyboard, aural (and oral) learning, students acquire an analytical vocabulary and the basic knowledge to support the exploration of musical repertoires, to enhance their own performances, and to develop their own musical compositions. Analytical and music-composition projects engage concepts of musical space, time, pitch, rhythm, and harmony as employed in tonal music. This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Aesthetic Exploration, Creativity/Innovation.
    • Aesthetic Exploration
    • Creativity/Innovation
  • CFA MT 111: Aural Skills 1
    Sight singing and dictation of diatonic materials in multiple clefs and using all intervals. Exercises in rhythmic reading, conducting, prepared singing, and intonation. 1 cr.
  • CFA MT 112: Aural Skills 2
    Undergraduate Prerequisite: CFA MT 111 or placement by exam. Continuation of MT 111. An introduction to chromaticism and modulation within a tonal context. Triplets and compound rhythms. Melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic dictation. 1 cr.
  • CFA MT 121: Basic Composition 1
    Introduction to principles of composition. Instruction in calligraphy and manuscript preparation. Examination of contemporary music techniques. Written work modeled on analyses of representative forms. 2 cr.
  • CFA MT 122: Basic Composition 2
    Prereq: CFA MT 121. Continued examination of principles of composition, calligraphy, and manuscript preparation. Examination of contemporary music devices. Written work modeled on analyses of representative forms. 2 cr.
  • CFA MT 201: Music Theory 3
    Further study of chromatic tonal music is approached through listening, writing, improvisation, and analytical work. The course explores the structure and usage of augmented-sixth chords, mode mixture/borrowed chords, and modulation to distantly related keys. Continued work in applying general voice-leading principles will be covered through figured-bass exercises and harmonization of tunes. Formal structures such as the sonata principle and sonata-hybrids will be introduced. A keyboard-harmony component will be covered in separate weekly meetings.
  • CFA MT 202: Music Theory 4
    Further study of chromatic music in the common-practice period is approached through listening, writing, and analytical work. The course explores the structure and usage of augmented-sixth chords, mode mixture/borrowed chords, the Neapolitan triad, and modulation to distantly related keys. Continued work in applying general voice-leading principles will be covered through figured-bass exercises and harmonization of tunes. Formal structures such as sonata and sonata hybrids will be introduced. A keyboard harmony component will be covered in separate weekly meetings. This course fulfills a single unit in each of the following BU Hub areas: Aesthetic Exploration, Quantitative Reasoning I, Creativity/Innovation.
    • Aesthetic Exploration
    • Quantitative Reasoning I
    • Creativity/Innovation
  • CFA MT 211: Aural Skills 3
    Undergraduate Prerequisites:CFA MT 111 and MT 112 or placement by exam.Continuation of CFA MT 112. More challenging exercises in sight singing and preparation of increasingly chromatic or melodically disjunct materials. Melodic, harmonic, two-part, and rhythmic dictation. Two-part rhythmic exercises and conducting. 1 cr.
  • CFA MT 212: Aural Skills 4
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CFA MT 111, MT 112, and MT 211 or placement by exam. Continuation of CFA MT 211. Greater emphasis on non-diatonic material;, more difficult exercises in prepared singing, sight-singing, dictation, and rhythm. 1cr.
  • CFA MT 221: Composition 3
    Prereq: CFA MT 122. Original work in traditional and non-traditional forms of musical compostion. (May be repeated for credit.) 2 cr. Undergraduate.
  • CFA MT 222: Composition 4
    Prereq: CFA MT 221. Continued composition of original work in traditional and non-traditional forms of musical compostion. (May be repeated for credit) 2 cr. Undergraduate.
  • CFA MT 301: Music Theory 5
    Analytical and theoretical concepts of post-tonal music will be explored in music of the 20th and 21st centuries. Major stylistic trends and approaches, such as free atonality, centricity/scale-based music, neo-classicism, twelve- tone/serial music, experimentalism, and new approaches to tonality will be covered. This course fulfills a single unit in the following BU Hub area: Quantitative Reasoning II.
    • Quantitative Reasoning II
  • CFA MT 302: Music Theory 6
    Special Topics in Music Theory; this course covers a variety of approaches, styles, and periods. Individual subjects are offered on a rotational basis. Refer to specific course sections for current offerings.
  • CFA MT 311: Aural Skills 5
    Undergraduate Prerequisites: CFA MT 111, MT 112, MT 211, and MT 212 or placement by exam. Continuation of CFA MT 212. Advanced work in preparing chromatic, atonal and melodically disjunct material, sight-singing, rhythmic reading, and dictation. May be taken for graduate credit with permission. 1 cr.
  • CFA MT 321: Composition 5
    Prereq: CFA MT 222. Original work in contemporary composition. (May be repeated for credit.) 2 cr. Undergraduate.
  • CFA MT 322: Composition 6
    Prereq: CFA MT 321. Original work in contemporary composition. (May be repeated for credit.) 2 cr. Undergraduate.
  • CFA MT 341: Modal Counterpoint 1
    Prereq: CFA MU 102. Analysis and writing of examples of sixteenth-century vocal styles including the motet. 2 cr.
  • CFA MT 342: Tonal Counterpoint 2
    The study of the early eighteenth-century styles of J.S. Bach and his contemporaries, with an emphasis on the relationship between theory and practice. Special attention will be paid to composing and analyzing invertible counterpoint, canon, two-part inventions and fugue. This is an undergraduate course, cross-listed with the graduate course MU705. 2.0 credits.