Bachelor of Music (BM)

Composition Option

The Bachelor of Music in Composition meets the needs of students who intend to focus on composition and its role in further music study. We develop composers who listen critically, explore multiple musical styles and traditions, and – through their talent and creativity – inspire current and future generations. Our purpose is to demonstrate the variety of music as a diverse field, and to provide students with concrete skills that will allow them to pursue fruitful careers in music. 

The curriculum for Composition equips the contemporary composer to write music for contexts ranging from the concert hall to narrative and interactive media such as film, television, games, and sound installations. Students are provided with a solid foundation in compositional craft, aesthetics, and music theory, while remaining current with recent developments in music technology. Supplemented by small group seminars, composer readings, and performance opportunities, our composition students build a portfolio of music preparing them for careers in composition, orchestration, arranging, or for further graduate study

Direct Application & Audition

Applicants applying directly to the BM in Composition must submit scores and recordings of 3 pieces of music with varying instrumentation. Students should submit works that they feel best represent their creative abilities and interests. All styles of music are welcome, including electronic or electroacoustic works, but evidence of skill in written music notation is a necessary component of the application.

After a review of composition portfolios, selected applicants will be invited for on-campus interviews and auditions. For general information and schedule, see Auditions, or consult the specific audition guidelines for the Composition optionIf an applicant is unable to attend in person, a virtual audition may be scheduled. 

The interview component will focus on your composition materials. Please bring copies of your music to help facilitate the conversation.

Transferring into the BM in Composition

Cal Poly Pomona music students who enter under another option, such as General Studies, may later transfer into the BM in Composition by presenting a similar portfolio of supporting materials.

Faculty Advisors


Guest Artists

Ian Dicke (Composer, Fulbright Scholar, Associate Professor at UC Riverside)

Austin Wintory (Grammy-nominated composer for video games and film)

Carter Pann (Pulitzer Prize-finalist composer)

Jack Van Zandt (Composer, CalArts Visiting Artist 2017)

Alfred Darlington (Daedelus, renowned LA producer and electronic musician)

Cody Farwell (Goodnight Cody, member of beat cypher collective Team Supreme)

Margaret Schedel (Composer, Interactive Media, Associate Professor at Stony Brook University)

Los Angeles Percussion Quartet (composer readings)

Dorian Wood (Composer, singer-songwriter)