Department of Music


The study of music—a phenomenon known to all people in all ages—lies naturally at the heart of a liberal education.

The Department of Music at Brown University provides an ideal environment for such an education, with its integrated faculty of scholars, performers, composers/media artists, and theorists.

Our diverse curriculum combines creative courses in composition, technology, and performance with speculative studies in history, theory, ethnomusicology, philosophy, and musical aesthetics. Application merges with analysis, creation with cultural study, and multimedia experiments with broad meditations on sound, in a unique department that welcomes all.

Well-Rounded Training

If you choose Music as a Concentration, you will be expected to achieve well-rounded training as a musician, regardless of the genre(s) in which you specialize. This training is manifested in the following general components:

  • Fundamental skills are important for any musician, and therefore a minimum of two music theory/musicianship courses are required of all students who wish to Concentrate. Students have the opportunity to enter into various theory courses according to their interest and experience.
  • Historical and cultural knowledge of music is another key area from which Concentrators are required to complete courses. These courses may be studies of Western or non-Western forms of music.
  • The creation of music is also central to the Music Concentration. Students are encouraged to make music in a number of ways, including participation in ensembles, solo performance, composition, music production, and/or conducting.

Music faculty will be available to advise students on shaping the flexible parts of their Concentration and achieving their goal at Brown.

Explore our Current Undergraduate Courses

What You Can Do With A Music Concentration

The A.B. from Brown with a concentration in Music is a liberal arts degree, and our students undertake a wide variety of paths after graduation. Some become professional musicians, composers, producers, music scholars, or arts administrators. Others pursue careers in fields well served by a liberal arts training, including law, education, technology, or public policy. Like the opportunities at Brown, the possibilities are endless.

Learn About the Concentration