First-Year Studies: Music and Technology

This is a course from a previous year. View the current courses

Each student in First-Year Studies in Music will be enrolled in a full Music program that reflects Sarah Lawrence’s educational philosophy of closely integrating theory and practice in the study of music. The Music program (also called a Music Third) consists of a number of components: individual instruction in voice, an instrument, or composition; courses in history and/or theory; participation in an ensemble; and concert attendance. In addition, all students in this course will be members of a weekly seminar, which provides a forum to explore a broad range of musical topics in both artistic and critical ways. The focus of this seminar will be the development and role of music technology—from the evolution of traditional instruments, such as the piano and electric guitar, to the invention of the synthesizer, the iPod, and the use of laptop computers as musical instruments. We will explore all genres of music, including both traditional and experimental electronic music. In order to develop and improve their insights and their ability to share them with others, students will write regular response papers and give short presentations. In the spring, they will also undertake a larger research project. First-Year Studies in Music is designed for students with all levels of prior music experience, from beginning to advanced.