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.

2015-16 Guest Artists

Upcoming Events

  • Aug
    31
    Music Now
    • Guest composer and UNT alumnus Yu-Chung Tseng
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    01
    Student Evaluation
    • Senior Recital Hearings, etc.
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 12:30pm
  • Sep
    14
    Music Now
    • Faculty percussionist/composer Christopher Deane
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    21
    Music Now
    • ICMC Preview
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Oct
    05
    Music Now
    • UNT faculty theorist David Bard-Schwarz: "Music and Affect in the 21st Century"
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am

Recent Division News

  • The Atlantic Coast Conference Band Directors' Association (ACCBDA) has named UNT alumnus Eli Fieldsteel (MM 2010) as the sole recipient of the 2014 James E. Croft Grant for Young and Emerging Composers. The twelve schools that comprise the ACCBDA will hold exclusive performance rights through 2015.

  • On 27 April 2014, Mivos quartet will perform Panayiotis Kokoras' Holophony for string quartet during the Northwestern University New Music Conference (NUNC!) Panayiotis will also give a presentation titled "Ensemble Holophony Project: Perspectives on Instrumental Sound-based Composition."

  • Senior composition student Daniel Sabzghabaei received second prize in the 2014 Texas Young Composers Festival Composition Contest with his piece Hal: Chahargah for solo violin. It will be premiered by distinguished violinist Mary Reynolds with the acclaimed, Dallas-based new music ensemble Voices of Change on Sunday 4 May 2014 at 5:00 pm in the SMU Owen Arts Center (Dallas, TX).

  • Jamesy Boy, a film with an original soundtrack by alumnus Jermaine Stegall (MM 2003), opens in select theaters nationwide 17 January 2014. Jermaine's other recent credits include the Emmy-winning TV series documentary Ten Days That Unexpectedly Changed America (Shay’s Rebellion: America’s First Civil War), and additional music for Scream 4 (directed by Wes Craven), An American Carol (directed by David Zucker), CW Television Network’s Supernatural, and the Nickelodeon TV movie The Last Day of Summer.

  • Doctoral composer Seth Shafer has been invited to present his paper "Temporal Models in Live-Generative Music Notation" at the second New Music Conference and Festival (NUNC! 2) in November 2015 at the Bienen School of Music on the campus of Northwestern University.

  • Sophomore composition student Brandon Maahs is one of eight composers selected in the 2013 Dallas Wind Symphony Fanfare Competition. His work, Invictus: Fanfare for Uncommon Heroes, will be performed prior to the DWS program on 4 March 2014 in the lobby of the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center.

  • In this year's call for scores by the Los Angeles-based concert series wasteLAnd, three of the four selected composers out of 830 entries were from UNT: Ryan Fellhauer, Timothy Harenda, and Panayiotas Kokoras. A fourth UNT composer, Chaz Underriner, received an honorable mention.

  • Faculty composer Panayiotis Kokoras received the first prize award in the 7th Destellos International Competition of Electroacoustic Music 2014 in Argentina, for his work Jet for soprano recorder and electronics. Alumna Elainie Lillios (DMA 2000) received second prize in the same competition for her work The Rush of the Brook Stills the Mind for percussion and electronics.

  • DMA alumnus James Worlton (DMA 2003) has accepted a position as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Texas Woman’s University (Denton, TX), where he will be teaching Theory and Arranging beginning in the fall of 2014.

  • Alumnus composer Greg Dixon (PhD 2012) has been appointed Assistant Professor of Music and Sound Design at Digipen Institute of Technology (Redmond, WA) beginning in the fall of 2014.