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.

2016-17 Guest Artists

Upcoming Events

  • Sep
    08
    Student Evaluation
    • Senior Recital Hearings, etc.
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 12:30pm
  • Sep
    12
    Music Now
    • TBA
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    19
    Music Now
    • Faculty composer Joseph Klein — "Canetti-menagerie"
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    19
    Faculty Recital
    • Canetti-menagerie: An evening of works by Joseph Klein
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 8:00pm
  • Oct
    03
    Music Now
    • Celebration of UNT alumnus and Emeritus Professor Larry Austin
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am

Recent Division News

  • Works by graduate composers Bihe Wen and Michael Smith, as well as alumnus Dave Gedosh (DMA 2009), are among 24 works selected from 289 submissions from around the world for the ARS ELECTRONICA FORUM WALLIS 2016, to be held in Switzerland this May.

  • Alumna composer Elainie Lillios (DMA 2000) was one of twelve recipients of the prestigious Barlow Endowment Commission, to compose a new work for the new music ensemble Bent Frequency.

  • Alumnus composer Greg Dixon (PhD 2012) received a commission from the Instruments India Composition Commission, sponsored by Liverpool Hope University and Milapfest, Britain’s leading Indian arts development trust. The commission grants Dixon exclusive access to a sound library of traditional Indian instruments that he will use to create new music.

  • David Stout has co-founded a working group at the Santa Fe Institute (SFI) with ecologist and complexity scientist, Dr. Jennifer Dunn. The Ecological Data Dramatization Art & Science working group will focus on the dramatization of ecological data sets integrating sonification, visualization and immersive staging. The project commences in March 2016 and will bring together the Santa Fe Institute and the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) with the University of North Texas and the University of Denver.

  • Faculty composers Joseph Klein and Panayiotis Kokoras will have works performed at the New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival in June 2015. Other featured composers include UNT alumni Mikel Kuehn (BM 1989) and Yu-Chung Tseng (MM 1994; DMA 1998), and incoming doctoral composer Jinghong Zhang.

  • In the 2015 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.

  • Elizabeth McNutt performed four works, including two by UNT faculty, at the International Computer Music Conference, hosted by UNT. She recently received a grant from the Earle Brown Music Foundation, in support of her series Sounds Modern, for upcoming performances in Dallas and Fort Worth (2016 and 2017). Her recent collaborations include premieres by Andrew May and local composer Sungji Hong.

  • New Motive Power, a work by undergraduate composer Brandon Maahs, received an Honorable Mention in the Texas A&M University Composition Competition and Symposium, one of the final three from among 46 submissions.

  • Undergraduate composer Ryan Ayres received Second Prize in the Voices of Change Young Composers Competition for his work twitch; composition alumnus Blake Turner (BM 2014) received an Honorable Mention for his work Elusive Trails.

  • Alumnus composer Sam Melnick was selected as winner in the Third Coast Trombone Retreat's first Call For Scores Competition. Fanfare for Many Cars Stuck in Way Too Much Traffic on a Two Lane Highway was premiered in Montague, Michigan on 21 June 2015 by the Anthony P. Hopkins Memorial Trombone Choir.