Music Theory and Composition (BM)

Program Description

Music Theory and Composition students are actively involved in the organization and performance of their own works, in concerts and readings by NYU performance groups in residence, in school performing ensembles, as well as in chamber groups specially hired for specific composition concerts. There is a very active weekly meeting of our department’s Composers Forum, in which students meet and work with world-renowned composers and performers, prepare two student showcases per semester, and attend highlights in the New York City new music concert season.

Composers have many opportunities to collaborate with performers, dancers, actors, and multimedia applications, which include music technology, jazz studies, and instrumental and vocal performance programs. Composers will also have the opportunity to work with musicians and other artists from New York City.


The program offers three concentrations:

Concert Music

Students in this concentration take courses in orchestration and conducting, have multiple opportunities to have their concert works performed in concerts, residencies, and readings by NYU performance groups, and collaborate with performers, dancers, and actors. Students participate in a weekly composers forum, prepare two student showcases per semester, and attend highlights in the New York City new music concert season.

Contemporary Production and Songwriting

In this concentration in contemporary production and songwriting, students study the music industry and the craft of writing, producing, and recording songs, through intensive course work and collaboration with professional musicians. The concentration includes courses in songwriting history and criticism, studio production skills and techniques, and the business structure of the music industry. Students take private lessons, learn to use industry-standard music technology, and participate in the Songwriters Forum, a seminar geared toward developing the art and craft of writing popular songs.

Screen Scoring

The concentration for scoring for film and multimedia requires a set of courses designed to provide the diverse knowledge necessary for working with visual media. The courses focus on technology, composition, aesthetics, and historical approaches for music written for the screen.


New York University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions supports the application process for all undergraduate programs at NYU.  For additional information about undergraduate admissions, including application requirements, see How to Apply

See How to Apply for admission requirements and instructions specific to each concentration: