Information about the Department of Music
Phone: (323) 343-4060
Fax: (323) 343-4063
Website: Department of Music
Professors: Michael Caldwell (Chair), David N. Connors, James Ford, Sara Graef, John M. Kennedy, Ross Levinson, Emily Moss, Beverly Stein, Steve Wight
Associate Professors: Christopher Gravis
Assistant Professors: Natalie Buickians, Uziel Colón, Patti Kilroy, Joao Pedro Marcondes-Mourão, Adam Snow.
Emeriti: Francis H. Baxter, William Belan, Jeffrey W. Benedict, Millie Burnett, Lu Elrod, Robert M. Fowells, Deborah Holland, Ellen King Kravitz, JoAn D. Kunselman, Ross Levinson, Thomas Miyake, Milton Stern, Vito G. Susca, Olga Termini, Maurine Timmerman, Patti W. Schliestett Wiggins
The Department of Music offers both liberal arts and professional degree programs leading to the Bachelor of Music, Bachelor of Arts degree in Music, Master of Music, and the Master of Arts degree in Music. Undergraduate students pursuing degrees in other fields may also declare music as a minor. All students at Cal State LA may choose from an array of music courses to enrich their general education and cultural life experiences while enrolled at the university.
The Department of Music provides many opportunities for creative performance activities, both for music majors and for students with careers in other disciplines who also wish to pursue personal development in the performing arts.
Undergraduate degree programs in Music provide students with a broad foundation in music theory and history that is grounded in perspectives of culture, place and era. Competence in artistic performance is strongly valued and is contextualized to the area of emphasis that each student pursues.
Undergraduate degree programs also emphasize preparation for successful graduate study for students who wish to pursue higher education beyond the baccalaureate degree.
There are two types of undergraduate degree programs offered at Cal State LA. The Bachelor of Arts degree program and the Bachelor of Music degree program.
The Bachelor of Arts degree serves the needs of students whose primary interests are music theory, history and literature, or those who wish to pursue a liberal arts education with an emphasis in music. The degree also allows students to pursue individual interests in music to prepare them for careers in music or music-related careers.
The Bachelor of Music degree is a rigorous curriculum for students who wish to prepare for a specific professional career in music or for those who wish to reach a professional caliber of music attainment within the Bachelor of Music degree program. Students may pursue specialized study in vocal, instrumental, or keyboard performance; composition; jazz studies; commercial music; and music education (credential preparation).
Students who wish to enroll as an undergraduate music major are required to perform an audition before a faculty panel upon entrance. Students may audition in voice, piano or on another instrument that is taught in the Department of Music.
Bachelor of Arts degree students are expected to demonstrate evidence of previous music study sufficient for success in a university music program. Candidates for the Bachelor of Music degree must demonstrate significant technical and artistic accomplishment in at least one area of vocal or instrumental performance before being admitted to this professional degree program. Candidates for the Bachelor of Music major may apply either before or after enrolling in the Department of Music at California State University, Los Angeles.
To complete a degree in music, students are required to develop their performance ability and to appear in at least one student solo or ensemble recital or concert each year. All music majors must demonstrate progress in the study of their major performing medium (instrument or voice) before a faculty jury at the end of each semester in which they are enrolled in applied lessons. Individual instrumental and vocal applied music lessons are only available to music majors who have passed the performance audition.
Undergraduate and graduate music majors and minors are required to participate in a major performance ensemble, and complete it with a “C” or better for each semester of residence as follows:
- Students who declare a wind or percussion instrument as the principal performance area must register for band, students who declare an orchestral string instrument as the principal performance area must register for string ensemble, and studentswho declare voice as the principal performance area must register for choir. BA, MA, and other students without a declared principal performance area must participate in one of major performance ensembles listed above, commensurate with skilllevel of the student, assigned by the ensemble director, and in consultation with area coordinators.
- Students accepted into the BM- or MM-Commercial Music will register for Commercial Music Ensemble as their major performance ensemble.
- Students accepted into the BM-Jazz Studies will register for Jazz Ensemble as their major performance ensemble.
- Students accepted into the MM-Afro-Latin program will register for Afro-Latin Ensemble as their major performance ensemble.
- A student whose principal performance area is Keyboard or Classical guitar must participate in a major performance ensemble for four semesters before substituting the appropriate Chamber Music or Guitar Ensemble in place of a major performance ensemble. Transfer students in these areas must have two semesters of Major Performance Ensemble in residence at Cal State LA before substitution with Chamber Music or Guitar Ensemble in place of Major Performance Ensemble is permitted, if otherprerequisites are met (i.e., four semesters continuous enrollment).
- A student who has completed state-funded lessons, who is not taking lessons at all, or who is taking fewer than six units of music must still be in an appropriate major performance ensemble (with the exception of MM and MA students who havecompleted all coursework).
- Music minors who have completed their music coursework have met the performance ensemble requirement
The Music Department Student Guidebook contains other policies and regulations, including a concert attendance policy, which pertains to all music majors and minors. It is each student’s responsibility to obtain a copy of the handbook and to become familiar with its contents. Failure to comply with policies and regulations outlined in the handbook may affect continued enrollment in the program and/or eligibility for graduation.
Students who demonstrate competence in performance and theory above the minimum requirement may earn advanced standing. Lower division students may register for and earn credit in upper division performance courses. Students who enter Cal State LA as freshmen will be required to complete four (4) semesters of MUS 1000 Concert/recital Attendance (0). Transfer students will be required to complete four (4) semesters of MUS 1000 or the equivalent from their community college.
Piano Proficiency Requirement
All students are required to complete the Class Piano sequence (MUS 1031, 1032, 2031, and 2032) or demonstrate proficiency in piano skills by passing a piano proficiency examination (MUS 2033). Music majors who demonstrate adequate piano skills and successfully pass the piano proficiency examination must use units from the required instruction in class piano (MUS 1031, 1032, 2031, and 2032) as elective units. Bachelor of Arts in Music students may use the elective units for additional coursework in music or another field, with the approval of their music degree adviser. Bachelor of Music students must use the elective units for additional coursework in music, with the approval of their music degree adviser.
ProgramsDegree - UndergraduateDegree - MinorDegree - GraduateCredential - Teaching