(College of Letters & Science)
Laurie San Martin, Ph.D., Chairperson of the Department
Department Office. 112 Music Building; 530-752-5537; Fax 530-752-0983; http://music.ucdavis.eduFaculty. http://arts.ucdavis.edu/music-faculty
The Major Program
The Bachelor of Arts degree in music provides both a broad liberal arts education and the skills necessary to explore music through its history, composition, theory, and performance. Students majoring in music may choose from three tracks in the major: (1) composition, (2) music history, theory, and ethnomusicology, or (3) performance. After a common core of courses in the lower division, students pursue their chosen track with specialized courses leading to an appropriate senior project. All majors are expected to complete a substantial project (composition, research presentation, recital) in the senior year (MUS 195).
Study Abroad & the Music Major. The department encourages students to pursue a portion of their studies abroad. In close collaboration with their undergraduate advisors, students plan a course of study abroad that complements their coursework at Davis. UC Davis Music Majors have completed upper division coursework at EAP partner institutions in Australia, England, France, Germany, and Italy; Music faculty members lead summer programs in Argentina, Austria, and France.
The Program. A fundamental grounding in music theory, music history, and performance during the first two years of study leads to more specialized study of composition, music scholarship, or performance during the last two years of undergraduate work.
Career Alternatives. Students who graduate with a B.A. in music from UC Davis have gone on to careers as composers and performers, as music scholars, and as professionals in the concert, media, and computing industries. Others have continued in K-12 education, medicine, law, government, and business.
Foreign Language. Students contemplating graduate study in music are advised to consider pursuing foreign language study beyond the elementary level.
Diagnostic Exams are given before admission into MUS 006A-006B-006C. As an alternative MUS 003A-003B may be recommended. Diagnostic exams are also given for MUS 016A-016B-016C and 017A-017B-017C at the beginning of each year. Transfer students should take the Music 6 diagnostic exam given during the first class meetings. In addition, incoming students are required to take MUS 002A-002B-002C (Keyboard Competence) unless they can pass out of one or more of the classes by demonstrating proficiency through a diagnostic exam given at the beginning of each quarter. Students learn (1) four-part keyboard harmony in all major and minor keys; (2) moderate fluency with figured bass at the keyboard; (3) major and minor scales with proper fingering; (4) ability to sight read simple piano music and Bach chorales.
Student Performing Activities. The Department of Music presents more than 100 concerts each year, offering performance opportunities for both majors and non-majors in the University Symphony, University Chorus, University Chamber Singers, University Concert Band, Baroque Ensemble, Jazz Band, world music ensembles (Indonesian Gamelan, Hindustani Vocal Ensemble, Afro-Cuban Ensemble, Brazilian Capoeira Ensemble, Samba School) and numerous chamber ensembles. There is a close relationship with the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, where several of the ensembles are resident.
Professional chamber ensembles perform frequently in the weekly series of free Thursday Noon Concerts, named after Joy S. Shinkoskey. Performance groups have collaborated with the Department of Theatre and Dance in productions of musical theater and opera. Study of instruments and voice with professional performers and teachers is required of all majors. Similar opportunities exist for qualified non-majors.
Note: A maximum of 19 units in performance courses (MUS 131, MUS 140-155) apply toward the degree; see Unit Credit Guidelines, College of Letters & Science degree requirements section. Faculty of the College of Letters & Science bylaws makes it possible for students to take more than 19 units of performance classes without those additional units counting toward the 225-unit cap on units.
Faculty & Facilities. The faculty is noted for its achievements in a variety of areas. The music scholars are active in research, writing, and performance; the music of the composers is performed and recorded nationally and internationally. The journal 19th-Century Music is housed in the department.
The regular faculty is joined throughout the year by visiting Artists-in-Residence, distinguished performers who give public concerts and lectures and who work with students informally.
The Empyrean Ensemble, a professional new music ensemble, is in residence at UC Davis, where it performs concerts of new music and annually premieres the work of student composers.
The department's facilities include a collection of Renaissance, Baroque, and modern instruments, along with non-western instruments including a Sundanese gamelan. The arts quadrangle houses the Computer and Electronic Music Studio, practice and rehearsal rooms, and a music library with well over 12,000 CDs, several hundred videos and a collection of music reference materials. Opened in 2016, the Ann E. Pitzer Center, next door to the Music Building, features a 399-seat state-of-the-art concert hall, six practice rooms, and five large teaching/rehearsal studios. Scores and music monographs are housed in the Peter J. Shields Library, adjacent to the Music Building. A partnership of campus libraries affords online access to more than 100,000 tracks of classical and world music by streaming audio.
Honors. A student becomes eligible for graduation with honors by meeting the minimum GPA and course requirements established by the College of Letters & Science. To qualify for high or highest honors, students must also complete the Music Department honors program with a GPA of 3.500 or above and write a thesis or submit a portfolio that meets the criteria for high honors or highest honors. Students apply to participate in the department honors program during the latter part of their junior year. Admission to the program is based on GPA, a thesis proposal, examples of previous writing, and the recommendation of a faculty member who is willing to sponsor the student's project. Students who anticipate seeking admission to the honors program are urged to complete at least one offering of MUS 121 or 122 before the end of their junior year. Interested students are urged to consult with faculty in their field early in their junior year.
Major Advisors. A. Triest, J. McGilvray, B. Olivier