University of Southern California
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USC Thornton School of Music

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The USC Thornton School of Music, consistently ranked among the nation's premier conservatories and schools of music, offers a conservatory setting within a larger university environment.

Since its founding in 1884, the USC Thornton School of Music has become the center of higher education in music in the western United States and ranks among the top five schools of music in the nation. Situated in the heart of the vital musical life of Los Angeles, the Thornton School of Music brings together a distinguished faculty and gifted students from around the world. It is in this wonderfully diverse cultural milieu that students are offered instruction in virtually all professional and scholarly branches of music, including instrumental and vocal performance, jazz, early music, conducting, composition, film scoring, music industry, music education, pedagogy, choral and sacred music, conducting and opera. In addition to its major programs, the Thornton School of Music also offers a wide array of music minors and general interest courses for students majoring in other disciplines.

The USC Thornton Symphony, Chamber Choir, Concert Choir, Opera, Wind Ensemble, Trojan Marching Band, Jazz Orchestra, Contemporary Music Ensemble, Early Music Ensemble and a wide variety of large and small choral and instrumental ensembles assure students the broadest performing experience. More than 500 formal and informal concerts and recitals are presented on campus each year and the school regularly presents eminent visiting artists and scholars in master classes, workshops, lectures, seminars and in performance.

Los Angeles is the home of numerous musical organizations whose performances contribute immeasurably to the cultural life of the region, and also the home of the nation's major recording, radio, film and television industries. All offer abundant opportunities to the serious young musician.

Music Student Services

United University Church-B
(213) 740-4721
FAX: (213) 740-5950
Assistant Dean: Debora Huffman

Undergraduate Studies

Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7703
Director: Stewart Gordon

Graduate Studies

Waite Phillips Hall 304
(213) 740-7418
Director: William Dehning

Music Admissions

United University Church 218
(213) 740-8986
FAX: (213) 740-8995
Director: Phillip Placenti

Choral and Sacred Music

Music Faculty Building 416
(213) 740-7418
Chair: William Dehning

Classical Guitar

Arnold Schoenberg Institute 204
(213) 740-7399
Chair: James Smith


Music Faculty Building 308
(213) 740-7416
Chair: Frederick Lesemann


Music Faculty Building 312
(213) 740-3131
Chair: John Barnett

Jazz Studies

Arnold Schoenberg Institute 204
(213) 740-3119
Chair: Ronald McCurdy

Keyboard Studies

Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7703
Chair: Alan Smith

Music History and Literature

Waite Phillips Hall 304
(213) 740-3211
Chair: Bryan Simms

Music Education

Waite Phillips Hall 302
(213) 740-3211
Chair: Jay Zorn

Music Industry

Music Faculty Building 416
(213) 740-3224
Chair: Richard McIlvery


Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7703
Chair: Ladd Thomas


Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7704
Chair: Eleonore Schoenfeld

Studio Guitar

Arnold Schoenberg Institute 204
(213) 740-7399
Chair: Richard Smith

Vocal Arts

Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7704
Chair: Gary Glaze

Winds and Percussion

Music Faculty Building 308
(213) 740-7416
Chair: Terry Cravens

Keyboard Collaborative Arts

Ramo Hall of Music 112
(213) 740-7703
Director: Alan Smith

Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television

Music Faculty Building 308
(213) 740-7416
Director: Brian King

Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz

Arnold Schoenberg Institute 1
(213) 821-1500
Program Coordinator: Daniel Seefe

All departments may be reached by writing to:

USC Thornton School of Music
Music Faculty Building
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0851
FAX: (213) 740-3217


Robert A. Cutietta, D.Ed., Dean

Susan Miltner Lopez, M.B.A., Associate Dean for Administration

Christopher Sampson, M.M., Associate Dean for New Initiatives

Debora L. Huffman, Ed.D., Assistant Dean for Academic Services

Peggy Schmid, B.A., Assistant Dean for External Relations


Gregor Piatigorsky Chair in Violoncello: Ronald Leonard, Dipl.

Professors: Arthur C. Bartner, Ed.D.*; Hans Beer; Shelton Berg, M.M.; Bruce Brown, Ph.D.; Terry Cravens, D.M.A.; Donald Crockett, Ph.D.*; Robert A. Cutietta, D.Ed.; William Dehning, D.M.A.; Gary Glaze, M.M.; Stewart Gordon, D.M.A.; Stephen Hartke, Ph.D.; James Hopkins, Ph.D.*; Morten Lauridsen, D.M.A.*; Frederick Lesemann, D.M.A.*; Larry Livingston, M.M.; Thom Mason, D.M.A.; Ronald McCurdy, D.M.A.; Donald McInnes, M.M.; John Perry, M.M.*; Daniel Pollack, M.S.*; Eleonore Schoenfeld*; Bryan Simms, Ph.D.*; Ladd Thomas, D.Mus.; Frank Ticheli, D.M.A.; James Tyler; Jay Zorn, D.M.E.

Associate Professors: Gilbert Blount, Ph.D.; Kevin Fitz-Gerald, Art.Dipl.; Erik Forrester, M.M.; Yehuda Gilad, Dipl.; Elizabeth Hynes, B.M.; Janet Johnson, Ph.D.; Norman Krieger, Dipl.; Peter Lightfoot, M.M.; Robert Lipsett, B.A.; M.M.; Patrice Madura, D.M.E.; Richard McIlvery, M.M.; Robert Moore, Ph.D.; Erica Muhl, D.M.A.; Giulio Ongaro, Ph.D.; Frank Potenza, M.M.; Alan Smith, D.M.A.; James Smith, M.M.; Richard Smith, M.M.; John Thomas, M.M.; David Wilson, D.M.A.

Assistant Professors: Joanna Demers, Ph.D.; Cynthia Munzer, B.M.

Research Assistant Professor: Maja Trochimczyk, Ph.D.

Clinical Assistant Professors: Andrew Garver; Mark Goldstein; Ed Kalnins; Brian King; Ken Lopez; Jack Smalley; David Spear; Karl Swearingen

Adjunct Professors: Martin Chalifour; Vincent De Rosa; Peter Erskine; Pamela Goldsmith; J. Thomas Johnson; David Raksin; H. Robert Reynolds; Cherry Rhodes; Lyndon Taylor; Allan Vogel; Bill Watrous; Michele Zukovsky

Adjunct Associate Professors: Stephen Gothold; David Howard; Jo Ann Turovsky; David Weiss; Suli Xue

Adjunct Assistant Professors: David Anglin; David Arnay; Jennifer Barnes; Elizabeth Blumenstock; Carmen Bradford; Jon Burlingame; David Carpenter; Lucinda Carver; Polli Chambers-Salazar; Leon Ndugu Chancler; Rose Corrigan; Bill Cunliffe; Neal Desby; Judith Farmer; Anne Farnsworth; Russell Ferrante; Angel Figueroa; Parmer Fuller; John Hayhurst; Paul Huybrechts; Monica Kaenzig; Adam Kofler; Miran Kojian; Shigemi Matsumoto; Vincent Mendoza; David Moore; Kristy Morrell; Leah Morrison; David Oakes; John Paton; Elizabeth Pitcairn; Mary Rawcliffe; Kim Richmond; Daniel Rothmuller; James Rotter; James Self; Aaron Serfaty; Robert Sheppard; Robert Shew; William Skeen; Chris Stone; Nick Strimple; Tierney Sutton; Lisa Sylvester; Gary Woodward; Chris Young

Senior Lecturers: William Biersach; Bernandene Blaha; John Clayton; Brian Head; Boyde Hood; William Kanengiser; Pat Kelley; Sharon Lavery; Peter Marsh; Janice McVeigh; Antoinette Perry; Richard Schmunk; Nick Stoubis; Scott Tennant; Joel Timm; Dennis Trembly; Stephen Trovato; James Walker

Full-Time Lecturers: Nico Abondolo; John Barnett; Steve Cunningham; Joe Diorio; Bruce Eskovitz; David Fick; Veronika Krausas; Jonathan Mack; Thomas Beno May; Chris Roze; Dennis Thurmond; Alan Pasqua; Richard Todd; Mark Weiser

Part-Time Lecturers: Janet Beazley; David Becker; Amy Bowers; Patrick Caddick; Terri Lyne Carrington; Jeff Clayton; Joel Clifft; Teresa Dimond; Ludek Drizhal; Kirill Gliadkovsky; Larry Harms; Lucina Hubbard; Daniel Kerr; Tim Kobza; Charles Koster; Vicki Muto; Granville Oldham; Sung-Hwa Park; Courtney Selan; Topper Smith; Douglas Tornquist; Jacques Voyemant; David Wilkinson

Emeritus Professors: Nancy Bricard, M.M.*; Arend Koole, D.Litt. et Phil.; Mitchell Lurie; William A. Schaefer, M.A.; Margaret Schaper, M.M.*; Alice Schoenfeld*; Eudice Shapiro; William Thomson, Ph.D.; James Vail, D.M.A.

*Recipient of university-wide or school teaching award.

Degree Programs

The Thornton School of Music offers professional and academic degrees at the bachelor's, master's and doctoral levels. These degrees are summarized below.

Bachelor of Music Students working toward this professional degree have a wide choice of specializations: composition, music education, music industry, instrumental performance, jazz studies, and vocal arts. Students can take either a single major program or double majors in several combinations such as organ and harpsichord or piano and composition, music education and wind, string, or percussion instrument. The two majors must be offered by different departments but lead to the same degree (for example, Bachelor of Music). Double majors consisting of two majors in the same department are not permitted. The degree is granted by the Thornton School of Music.

Bachelor of Arts This degree is for students with a strong music background but who wish to combine professional music training with substantial study in other disciplines.

Bachelor of Science Offered by the Thornton School of Music in the specialized area of music industry.

Minors in Music: Five different minors in music are offered, each approaching the discipline from a unique perspective and with a distinct curriculum: Jazz Studies, Musical Studies (Performance), Musical Theatre, Music Industry, and Music Recording.

Master of Music: This is a professional degree that represents proficiency in one area of musical practice and relevant knowledge in musical literature, performance and technique. It requires a minimum of 30 graduate units, of which 15 must be at the 500 level or higher. Students complete either a thesis or recital(s) as part of the degree requirements. The degree can be earned in choral music, sacred music, composition, conducting, music education, keyboard collaborative arts, guitar, harpsichord, jazz studies, organ, piano, voice or instrumental performance. The degree is granted by the Thornton School of Music.

Master of Music Education: This degree is offered jointly by the Thornton School of Music and the Rossier School of Education. It is intended for persons who are now, or who plan to be, school or community music specialists.

Master of Arts: This degree, offered through the Graduate School in conjunction with the Thornton School of Music, stresses music history or early music performance, with emphasis on scholarly research.

Doctor of Musical Arts: This is a professional degree that represents the highest level of expertise in a major field of musical practice and competence in several additional areas. Students may specialize in choral music, sacred music, composition, jazz studies, music education, vocal or instrumental performance.

Doctor of Philosophy: Offered through the Graduate School, this is an academic degree in the field of historical musicology. A substantial background in music, research and languages is required.

Entrance to the Degree Programs

Admission to a degree program is granted through USC's admission process, described in the Admission section of this catalogue. A supplementary application form is also required for students seeking admission to the Thornton School of Music, which can be obtained from the School of Music Office of Admission.

Applicants to a program within the school are screened by appropriate faculty selection committees that hold auditions, interviews and examine supportive materials. Letters of acceptance are issued by the USC Office of Admission.

A performance audition is required of applicants to most degree and certificate programs in the Thornton School of Music. Refer to individual curriculum listings for details.

Graduate Record Examinations
Scores from the General Test of the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) are required for application and admission to the Master of Arts, Doctor of Musical Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. (The Music Subject Test is not required.) Test scores on the GRE that are more than five years old at the time of application are not accepted.

Placement Tests
Undergraduate transfer students who have had formal study in any of the following areas must take the appropriate placement examination prior to their first registration: aural skills, theory, music history, conducting, analysis, orchestration and performance. The results of these examinations determine placement in appropriate sequential courses.

Admission to Graduate Standing
Achievement tests in basic musical skills and areas of study (Music Graduate Entrance Examinations) are required of all entering graduate students during the first semester or summer session in residence. If all examinations are not passed by the end of two semesters of course work, then further registration must include remedial courses in all areas where deficiencies exist. In degree programs in which one recital is required, all entrance examinations must be passed or corresponding remedial course work completed with a minimum grade of B- before permission to present a graduate recital is given. In programs with two or more recitals, only the first may be given prior to passing all entrance examinations or completing corresponding remedial courses.

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL)
All applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Both paper-based and computer-based scores are accepted. Test scores that are more than five years old at the time of application are not accepted.

Advanced Standing Credit for Music Taken in Accredited Schools of Music
Music courses completed with satisfactory grades in a member institution of the National Association of Schools of Music are acceptable for transfer. The university reserves the right, however, to require a student to take a placement test (at no cost) to determine the level of achievement in any given aspect of music, and to review the student's credentials at the end of one semester at USC to determine what credit will in fact be transferred.

Advanced Standing Credit for Music Not Taken in Accredited Schools of Music
Students who wish credit for music taken in institutions not accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music must provide the Office of Admission with information on their prior work, showing the subjects studied, the number of lessons in each subject, the length of each lesson, number of years of study and the names of instructors. Such special requests are dealt with on an individual basis. Examinations or continuation work or both may be required before credit allowance is considered.

General Requirements

All curricula leading to the Bachelor of Music, Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees require proficiency in performance. This is accomplished by individual instruction in the areas best suited to the student's ability and interests.

Proficiency in piano is required in all curricula and may be achieved through class and/or individual instruction. Some curricula require competency in one additional performance medium.

Attendance at recitals in the field of the student's major is a regular part of the work in applied music for all music majors. Attendance at recitals is recommended for non-music majors who take individual instruction as an elective.

Curriculum Requirements

The curriculum requirements for each major are listed under each degree. The USC course classification and numbering system is explained in the Academic Policies section. In addition, music courses sometimes carry the following abbreviations: CD = Conducting; CG = Classical Guitar; HC = Harpsichord; OR = Organ; P = Piano; SG = Studio Guitar; VA = Viola; VC = Voice Coaching; VO = Voice.

Change of Curriculum

To change from one curriculum to another, a student must obtain written approval of all of the following: the department chair in the curriculum which the student is leaving, the department chair for the new curriculum and the dean of the Thornton School of Music.

Non-Degree Programs

Students who have highly specialized interests which may not be met through degree programs may apply for admission to one of the following non-degree programs.

Artist Diploma Program
This program is designed for young artists of exceptional ability and musical sensitivity who plan careers as solo performers. The Artist Diploma Program provides young artists the opportunity to devote their full time to concentrated study and practice for the duration of their assigned programs.

Graduate Certificate Program in Performance
This graduate-level program is designed for students who have completed their undergraduate education in music, or its equivalent, and intend to concentrate their energies on the full-time development of their discipline.

Graduate Certificate Program in Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television
This one-year program is designed for students who hold the Bachelor of Music in Composition or its equivalent.

Honor Society

Pi Kappa Lambda
Pi Kappa Lambda is a national honor society established in 1918 for the promotion and recognition of scholarship and performance in music. Students of the School of Music are eligible for election to Eta chapter at the University of Southern California, established in 1923.