Composition & Theory

Composition & Theory

The Music Department offers students the opportunity to study with gifted, nationally and internationally recognized faculty while pursuing their undergraduate or graduate music degrees.

Undergraduate students may choose to pursue either a Bachelor of Arts Degree in music or a Bachelor of Music Degree. Students choosing a career path in the Bachelor of Music Degree may specialize in one or more areas of emphasis: music composition, music education, music performance, music theory, or the Bachelor of Music Degree with elective studies in business.

Master of Music students can pursue emphases in composition, instrumental conducting, instrumental performance, music education, music history, or music theory.

Graduate students who have completed an MA Degree or its equivalent have the opportunity to further develop their musical skills in a performance-intensive program culminating in a Graduate Certificate in Advanced Performance.

Faculty

Undergraduate Auditions

The gateway to pursuing a music degree is through auditioning for and being accepted into an applied faculty member’s private studio.

All undergraduate students must complete an audition on their major instrument or voice. Composition students must retain a grade of “B” or better in music theory and aural perception skills to be admitted to and remain in the composition or theory program.

Because of limited space, each professor may only be able to accept a select number of students into their studio each year. Your preparation for the audition is vital to your success.

We look forward to hearing you play for us. Thank you for including us in your musical journey.

The steps for applying to become a music major are:

  1. Complete the University of Arkansas Application for Admission.
  2. Submit a Music Major Application.
  3. Ask your two references to submit letters of recommendation to Undergraduate Music Admissions, 201 Music Building, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701. Electronic submissions may be sent to music@uark.edu with the subject line “Music Undergraduate Admissions”.
  4. Schedule an audition. Please contact the audition person listed in your specific “area of study” to schedule your audition.
  • Guitar: Benjamin Harris
  • Piano: Tomoko Kashiwagi
  • Strings: Er-Gene Kahng
  • Voice: Stephen Caldwell
  • Woodwind, Brass, or Percussion: Connie Vick

Graduate Auditions for Master of Music Degree in Composition or Theory

The choice to pursue musical studies at the graduate level is an important decision in the continuing development of a musician’s skill. We welcome the opportunity to assist you and encourage you to make careful preparation for your audition/interview. This process is vital to your success. 

All requested audition materials should be labeled with the candidate’s name, major instrument, and MM emphasis to be pursued. Materials should be mailed to Music Graduate Admissions, University of Arkansas, 201 Music Building, Fayetteville, AR 72701. Electronic submissions may be sent to music@uark.edu with the subject line “Music Graduate Admissions”.

The steps for applying are as follows:

  1. Complete the University of Arkansas Application for Admission.
  2. Ask three individuals to submit their letters of recommendation to Music Graduate Admissions, 201 Music Building, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR 72701. Electronic submissions may be sent to music@uark.edu with the subject line “Music Graduate Admissions”.
  3. Composition candidates should submit a portfolio consisting of at least three works in notated form, with accompanying recordings.  One electronic or electro-acoustic work may be submitted in lieu of one of the notated works.  Included in the portfolio should be a list of the composer’s works with dates in which the works were performed.
  4. Theory candidates should submit transcripts which show a record of excellence in undergraduate music theory classes along with two representative theoretical papers.
  5. Schedule an audition/interview with Robert Mueller.

Students wishing to apply for a Music Department Teaching Assistantship must complete a “Graduate School Application for Graduate Assistantship” and submit it to Music Graduate Admissions, University of Arkansas, 201 Music Building, Fayetteville, AR 72701. Electronic submissions may be sent to music@uark.edu with the subject line “Music Graduate Admissions”.