Music Theory

Courses in Music Theory

The Music Theory sequence constitutes three courses taught over the period of one year: Mu 127 - Fundamentals of Music Theory and Elementary Ear Training; Mu 128 - Harmony I; and Mu 129 - Harmony II. Students with little or no musical background can achieve a significant understanding of music theory a nd develop skills in sight reading and sight singing through the music theory courses. Students who have had some music theory in high school or elsewhere may take a proficiency exam and skip Mu 127.

Mu 127. Fundamentals of Music Theory and Elementary Ear Training. 9 units (3-0-6); to be offered Fall 1996 - no prerequisite.
Mu 127 is intended for the beginner interested in learning more about how music works: exploration of basic vocabulary and concepts of music theory (rhythm and pitch notation, intervals, scales, function of key signatures, etc.) are coupled with practical training in rhythmic and melodic dictation and sight-singing. The course is highly participatory and students are expected to discuss assignments and participate in sight-singing and ear training exercises in class.

Mu 128. Harmony I. 9 units (3-0-6); to be offered Winter 1997 - prerequisite: Mu 127 or entrance exam.
Mu 128 begins the study of tonal harmony and intermediate music theory and continues practice in sight-singing and ear training. Students learn techniques of chord progression, principals of voice leading, composition and harmonization of melody and modulation to related keys according to common practice (the practice of composition during the 18th and early 19th centuries). Music of the period is analyzed and used as a basis for the students' own compositions.

Mu 129. Harmony II. 9 units (3-0-6); to be offered Spring 1997.
More advanced concepts of music theory, including analysis of chromatic harmony and 20th century procedures are explored. Ear training and sight-singing continued. Students have the opportunity to compose a more extended work over the course of the term and, depending on performance medium, these works are performed in class during the final weeks.

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