Skip to main content Skip to search

Philip and Sarah Belz Department of Music

The study of music has been at the heart of the humanities since the beginning of the Common Era. Stern College for Women music courses are designed to give students in any field experience with the pleasures of music study and performance.

Courses present the basic tools of music theory (counterpoint, harmony and analysis) and knowledge of music history and offer experience in composition.

Performance in chamber ensembles, chorus and/or jazz band is encouraged, and to that end, credit is offered to both majors and minors studying an instrument with a private instructor.

At Stern College, students must meet with the senior faculty member to discuss her area of concentration and plan an appropriate course of study: Theory and Composition, Literature and Materials or Performance (ensembles and applied musical studies).

For more information, please contact Professor David Glaser

Program Information

Please see the Schedule of Classes for the current semester’s offerings.

Music (MUSI)

  • 1111 The Sense of Music 3 credits
    Developing insight into the art of music through guided listening experiences that aim to develop aural perception, historical perspective, an awareness of the formal processes of music, and some critical bases for esthetic discrimination; emphasis on the cultivation of helpful listening habits. No previous training in music is required.
  • 1341 Music of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance 3 credits
    Evolution of the forms and practices of Western music during the medieval and Renaissance eras; the development of forms and practices during the Baroque era, emphasizing the works of Machaut, Dufay, Josquin, Ockeghem, and Monteverdi.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 1111.  
  • 1350 Music in the Baroque and Classical Eras 3 credits
    The development of triadic music, tonality, and its forms in the Baroque era and continuing through the classical era. The growth of opera, concerto, fugue, sonata, and symphony; Western music from Monteverdi to Beethoven.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 1111.
  • 1351 Music in the Romantic and Modern Eras 3 credits
    Musical practices in the 19th and 20th centuries, beginning with Beethoven’s monumental and universal works and their influence on later generations; the increase in chromaticism through the romantic era, the breakdown of tonality, and the harmonic/contrapuntal techniques and structural principles of 20th century music; Western music from Schubert to Babbitt.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 1111.
  • 1381 History of Jazz, Blues, and American Pop Music 3 credits
    African, AfroAmerican and EuroAmerican musical genres in the 19th century after emancipation; the mutual cross-cultural assimilation of these genres that synthesized into new, uniquely North American popular and then art music in the 20th century. Jazz styles considered in depth include traditional (early jazz), swing, bebop, and modal and free jazz, emphasizing recordings of influential, innovative performers of each era.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 1111 or permission of the instructor.
  • 1661 Survey of Operatic Literature 3 credits
    A brief overview of the history of opera, with a focus on various aspects that this genre raises. Topics may include the relative role of words versus music, plots that are appropriate for dramatic treatment, the means by which character is created through music, and political subtexts of certain works.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 1111 or permission of the instructor.
  • 2105 Music Fundamentals 2 credits
    An introduction to music notation and the piano keyboard. Designed to give beginners a basic level of skill in sight reading. Peparatory course for further study in applied music theory, ear-training and harmony.  
  • 2111, 2112 Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint I, II 3 credits
    Structural foundations of music and their applications to the reading, sight singing, playing, writing and analysis of melodies, as well as to the writing and playing of simple chordal accompaniments and of four-part chorales; introduction to counterpoint. Some musical experience is desirable.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 2105. Corequisites: 2111L, 2112L.  
  • 2111L, 2112L Elementary Ear Training and Keyboard Skills I, II 1 credit
    Laboratory course designed to help students master the skills covered in Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint. Emphasis on the development of relative pitch memory and recognition of interval, chord, and chord inversion. Students learn sight singing from simple melodies and counterpoints, and practice elementary skills of chordal accompaniment at the keyboard.
    Corequisite: MUSI 2111, 2112.  
  • 2113, 2114 Chromatic Harmony I, II 3 credits
    Continuation of Diatonic Harmony and Counterpoint. Principles of chromatic voice-leading and chromatic harmony, exploring those topics through model composition and analysis. The second semester also offers an introduction to post-tonal theory and analysis.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 2112.  
  • 2113L Intermediate Ear Training 1 credit
    Corequisite: MUSI 2113  
  • 2120, 2121 Introduction to Composition I, II 3 credits
    Basic techniques involved in writing music. Issues of musical structure and expression are explored in traditional and contemporary repertory via composition as well as the analysis of selected works.
    Prerequisite: MUSI 2112 or permission of the instructor.  
  • 3301; 3302; 3303; 3304 Choral Ensemble 1 credit
    Introduction to the vocal art and to the craft of ensemble singing through explorations in standard choral repertory. Primary objectives are free vocal production and attainment of a refined ensemble sound. Students will do physical and vocal exercises as well as basic work in musical notation, part-singing skills, and training of the ear for the special requirements of ensemble singing.  
  • 3461 through 3484 Instrumental Music Ensembles 1-2 credits
    Introduction to the craft and discipline of small ensemble rehearsal and performance. Emphasis placed on basic musicianship skills, including formal and rhythmic analysis, sight reading, and score reading, as well as on tonal beauty, accurate intonation, and expressivity.
    Prerequisites: Ability to play a musical instrument or sing, ability to read music, and permission of the instructor.  
  • 4001 Introduction to Music Pedagogy 2-3 credits
    Students in this course will work on their own vocal and instrumental skills, reaching for a new level of freedom and expressivity in performance, while developing a detailed awareness of the process so as to be able to assist their own students in the future. The process involves in-class performance and focus on rehearsal and practice technique, improvisation, analysis, verbal communication skills, critical thinking, and writing. 
    Prerequisite: Ability to play an instrument and ability to read music, or permission of instructor.  
  • 4111; 4112; 4113; 4114 Applied Musical Studies 1-2 credits
    Vocal or instrumental work arranged by the music staff; literature, material, techniques. A maximum of nine (9) credits may be taken in such courses. Fee: minimum $600 per semester on an individual basis, dependent on extent and nature of services provided.
    Prerequisite: permission of the senior professor.  
  • 4930 Selected Topics in Music 1-3 credits

Music Major

Thirty credits including MUSI 1111, 1350, 1351, 2105, 2111, 2111L, 2112, 2112L, 2120. The remaining eight credits must include participation in a chamber ensemble and/or the chorus. Choral Ensemble, Chamber Ensemble and Applied Musical Studies are graded on an A/P/N basis.

Music Minor

Twenty credits including MUSI 1111, 2105, 2111, 2111L, 2112, 2112L. The remaining seven credits must include at least one history course and participation in a chamber ensemble and/or the chorus.

For more details about the Music major and minor - see the factsheet at the Academic Advisement webpage.

The following list includes faculty who teach at both the Beren (B) and Wilf (W) campuses.

  • Daniel Beliavsky
    Visiting Associate Professor of Fine Arts and Music (W)
    Co-Chair, Department of Fine Arts and Music
  • Stanley Dorn
    Adjunct Instructor in Music (B)
  • David Glaser
    Professor of Music (B)
    Co-Chair, Department of Fine Arts and Music
  • Jonathan Schapiro
    Adjunct Instructor in Music (W)
  • Marcia Young
    Lecturer in Music (B)
    Director of Performance Studies
Skip past mobile menu to footer