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

  • Oct
    03
    Music Now
    • Celebration of UNT alumnus and Emeritus Professor Larry Austin
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Oct
    03
    Spectrum
    • Sponsored by Composers Forum
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 8:00pm
  • Oct
    10
    Music Now
    • Guest pianist Redi Llupa
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Oct
    12
    Guest Artist
    • Guest artist Redi Llupa performs piano works by Takemitsu, Berio, Furrer, and Walker.
    • 8:00pm
  • Oct
    17
    Music Now
    • Guest ensemble Roomful of Teeth
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am

Recent Division News

  • 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.

  • Lockjaw, a brass quintet by undergraduate composer Brandon Maahs, was selected to be premiered at the 2015 Vox Novus Festival on 24 October 2015 at Symphony Space in New York City by the Nautilus Brass Quintet.

  • Alumnus composer Eli Fieldsteel (MM 2010) has accepted a tenure-track position as Assistant Professor of Composition-Theory at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he will serve as the Director of the Experimental Music Studios and teach courses in electroacoustic composition and engineering.

  • Graduate composer Christopher Poovey will have his piece Dripstone, for baritone saxophone and stereo fixed media,​ performed on 15 October 2016 at the Jayu Theater in the Seoul Arts Center as part of the 2016 Seoul International Computer Music Festival.

  • The premiere performance of May 29 - June 9 for string orchestra and string quintet by alumnus composer Daniel Sabzghabaei (BM 2014) was presented by the Youth Symphony Orchestra "Slobozhanskiy," commissioned and conducted by Eldred Marshall on 20 November 2015 in Kharkov, Ukraine at the Kharkov State Performance Hall.

  • Undergraduate Composer Sam Mikulewicz's work Himawari was selected for performance at the April 2016 Sound Of Dragon Chinese Music Festival in Vancouver, BC, Canada. Sam was one of ten composers selected among entries from twelve countries, and the only American composer whose work was selected for performance.

  • Doctoral composer Seth Shafer presented his paper titled "Performance Practice of Real-Time Notation" at the Second International Conference on Technologies for Music Notation and Representation in Cambridge, UK in September 2016. His electroacoustic work, Hookean Elastics, was performed at the 2016 Sound and Music Computing Conference in Hamburg that same week.

  • An Unaware Cosmos: Module-Set 1 by Joseph Klein was premiered at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno, Czech Republic on 21 October 2015. The work was conducted by the composer and performed by students at the Janáček Academy.

  • Doctoral composer Timothy Harenda has been selected as one of four finalists in the 2016 ASCAP/SEAMUS Student Commission Competition, for his work Purple Quartz. Winners will be announced at the SEAMUS conference in February.

  • Doctoral composer Michael Smith has recently had his work Ictus (2-channel fixed media) selected for performance at numerous events in 2016, including the Bowling Green Graduate Student Conference, the National Student Electronic Music Event (N_SEME), Electronic Music Midwest (EMM), Ars Electronica @ Forum Wallis, and at the Open Circuit Electronic Music and Video Art Showcase, where he was selected as a finalist in their