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.

2017-18 Guest Artists

Upcoming Events

  • Aug
    28
    Music Now
    • Introductory Meeting and CEMI Open House
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    07
    Student Evaluation
    • Senior Recital Hearings, etc.
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 12:30pm
  • Sep
    11
    Music Now
    • Topic TBA
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Sep
    25
    Music Now
    • 2017-18 Composer-in-Residence Bruce Broughton
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am
  • Oct
    02
    Music Now
    • Joseph Klein — "Practical Applications of D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson's On Growth and Form on Musical Materials and Structures"
    • Merrill Ellis Intermedia Theater
    • 11:00am

Recent Division News

  • Graduate composers Michael Smith, Jacob Thiede, Bihe Wen, and Jinghong Zhang will have works presented and performed at the National Student Electronic Music Event (NSEME 2017), 10-11 March 2017 at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA.

  • Alumnus Daniel Sabzghabaei (BM 2014) was especially active and productive during the summer 2016. He was a production intern at the Ojai Music Festival (Ojai, CA, 9-12 June), where he worked alongside artistic director Peter Sellars, as well as festival artists Kaija Saariaho, Roomful of Teeth, and Claire Chase and the International Contemporary Ensemble, among others.

  • Electroacoustic works Contemplating Larry by alumna composer Elainie Lillios (DMA 2000) and Regression by graduate composer Bihe Wen were two of thirteen prizewinners selected from a pool of 109 composers from 25 different countries in the Concours de Composition Acousmatique Métamorphoses 2016.

  • 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.

  • Alumnus composer Sam Melnick (BM 2015) was selected as one of eight finalists (out of over 60 submissions from 13 countries) in Novus New Music, Inc's first annual call for scores (2016).

  • Stephen Lucas has had an unprecedented streak of album releases over the last several months, resulting in over 20 solo albums under the moniker "Stephen Lucas Live at Brussels." His most successful publication received a positive review from the American rock band Stone Temple Pilots (STP) on major social media outlets. His long-time/distance collaborator/engineer Dairy Tade was recently nominated by the Panini Quartet to be the most successful dairy farmer/engineer in Northwest England.

  • Landscape Series: 1 by alumnus composer Chaz Underriner (PhD 2016) is one of five works selected (out of 288 submissions from composers in 36 countries) as a finalist for the prestigious 2017 Gaudeamus Award in Composition. His work will receive a performance at the Gaudeamus Muziekweek in September 2017, at which time the award winner will be announced.

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Alumnus composer Daniel Sabzghabaei (BM 2014) was one of four composers selected by the choral ensemble Magpies and Ravens for their LINEAGE program. Daniel will receive mentoring from composer Paul Rudoi and the ensemble, culminating in two performances of his work Delbaré for SATB a cappella choir on 12-13 March 2016 in Minneapolis, MN.