Peter Hamlin

Christian A. Johnson Professor of Music

 Mon. 10-11; Wed. 1-2; by appt.

Peter Hamlin teaches theory, electronic music, and composition at Middlebury. He is an active composer who has written numerous works for orchestra, band, choir, chamber ensembles, solo instruments, solo voice, music theater, and electronic media. He received his BA in music at Middlebury in 1973 where he studied composition with George Todd. He was a radio producer/host at KPBS-FM in San Diego from 1974-1980, and from 1980-1990 hosted a classical music program on KUNI-FM in Cedar Falls, Iowa. He also served as fine arts host on Iowa Public Television. He received an MM degree in composition at the University of Northern Iowa in 1989, studying there with Peter Michaelides. His PhD is from the Eastman School of Music where he studied composition with Joseph Schwantner and Samuel Adler. He taught at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota, from 1992 to 2004, and was appointed to the Middlebury faculty in 2004.

Here's a recent student project, a collaborative composition/production by senior Middlebury music majors Jack Tipper and Mike McCann.

Watch the world premiere of Soul Mate and One Woman One Man from the song cycle by Peter Hamlin. Susanne Peck, soprano and Cynthia Huard, piano. Performed March 13, 2011.

This is one of several of Professor Hamlin's pieces being premiered this year. On April 10 at 3:00 pm the Vermont Contemporary Music Ensembles will perform Meditation on Elzick's Farewell and Singing Bowl.  On April 22 at 8:00 pm, the College Orchestra performance will include a piece by Professor Hamlin, as well as premieres by Noah Silverstein '11 and Nicholas Tkach '11.


Noah Silverstein, Nicholas Tkach, Peter Hamlin

Watch Music Department chair, Peter Hamlin and music major Philippe Bronchtein perform their original electronic music at 51 Main, Thursday, October 1, 2009.



Course List: 

Courses offered in the past four years.
indicates offered in the current term
indicates offered in the upcoming term[s]

INTD 1074 - MiddCORE 2015      

MiddCORE 2014
MiddCORE’s mentor-driven leadership and innovation immersion program builds skills and confidence through collaborative, experiential, impact-focused learning. Through daily, weekly, and month-long challenges, students gain experience in leadership, strategic thinking, idea creation, collaboration, persuasive communication, ethical decision-making, conflict resolution, and crisis management. Visit www.middcore.com to learn more. Acceptance into MiddCORE 2014 is by approval only. Please send an email to middcore@middlebury.edu by 5pm on Saturday, Nov. 2nd with the following information: Name, Class Year, Major, and a brief paragraph explaining why you want to be in MiddCORE. Decisions will be emailed by Sunday evening, Nov 3rd. (Pass/Fail) non-standard grade WTR

Winter 2012

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MUSC 0160 - Music Theory I: Fundamentals      

Music Theory I: Fundamentals
This course is an introduction to the basic elements and theoretical concepts of Western music. We will focus on such topics as basic keyboard skills, sight singing, musical notation, rhythm, and harmony and form. Theoretical work and drills will be combined with compositional and performance projects. The goal of the course is to expand students’ musical intuition and skill and to provide the technical basis for further music study. No prior musical experience is required. (Students who wish to take upper-level composition or music theory courses must either complete this course or pass a theory and musicianship test administered by the department to demonstrate equivalent experience.) (Formerly MUSC 0109). 2.5 hrs. lect. ART

Fall 2014

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MUSC 0212 - Electronic Music      

History, Theory, and Practice of Electronic Music
This course will provide a historical look at the development of electronic music from the earliest analog techniques to present-day computer technology. Students will learn about the theory of digital and analog sound, acoustics, and MIDI. Creative projects will guide the class through a range of techniques. Much of the focus will be on how the electronic medium enables composers to work with sound and musical forms in non-traditional ways. 2 hrs. lect./1 hr. lab ART

Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Spring 2015

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MUSC 0213 - Digital Musician      

The Digital Musician
In this course, we will explore the potential of smartphones, tablets and interactive web sites for musical experimentation, creation, and performance. Projects will include the creation of multi-media web sites, phone/tablet, web apps, and live performances using these tools. Students should have a laptop that they can bring to class. There is no prerequisite other than a willingness and interest in working directly with computer code (especially Max, HTML5 and javascript). ART

Spring 2013

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MUSC 0260 - Music Theory II: Diatonic      

Music Theory II: Diatonic Theory
This course is an in-depth technical study of the materials of music, a study which expands one’s ability to analyze and create music and to understand different musical styles. We will cover harmonic materials, introduce musical form, and work with traditional compositional skills. These techniques are applied to the analysis of classical music, jazz and popular music. (MUSC 0160 or passing score on the MUSC 0160 placement exam.) 3 hrs. lect./disc. ART

Fall 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2014, Fall 2015

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MUSC 0261 - Music Theory III: Chromatic      

Music Theory III: Chromatic Theory
This course is a continuation of MUSC 0260. Students study more advanced harmonic devices including modulation and chromaticism, jazz harmony and post-tonal techniques. In-depth analysis of classical music, jazz, and popular music supports a more advanced study of musical form. (MUSC 0260) 3 hrs. lect./disc. ART

Spring 2011, Spring 2012, Spring 2013, Spring 2015

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MUSC 0500 - Independent Study      

Independent Study
Admission by approval. Please consult published departmental guidelines and paragraph below.

Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Winter 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016

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MUSC 0704 - Senior Work      

Senior Work
Senior work is not required of all music majors and joint majors. However, students interested in and eligible for departmental honors (see guideline above, in "Departmental Honors" section) may propose one or two-semester Senior Work projects. Projects may be in history, composition, theory, ethnomusicology, performance, or electronic music, and should culminate in a written presentation, a public performance, or a combination of the two. MUSC0704 does not count as a course toward fulfillment of the music major.

Project and budget proposals for Independent Study and Senior Work should be submitted by the previous April 1 for fall and winter term projects, and the previous October 15 for spring term projects. Budget proposals will not be considered after those dates. Project proposals will be considered after the deadline but are more likely not to be approved due to previous commitments of faculty advisors or other scheduling reasons.

Spring 2011, Fall 2011, Winter 2012, Spring 2012, Fall 2012, Winter 2013, Spring 2013, Winter 2014, Fall 2014, Winter 2015, Spring 2015, Fall 2015, Spring 2016

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MUSC 1024 - Tablet Music      

Making Music with Tablets and Smartphones
In this course students will compose and perform music using only tablets and smartphones as musical instruments. Students will form groups, compose and improvise, and develop performances. Through student research projects, we will study what musicians and researchers are doing with this new medium. No musical experience is required other than a love of music, an open mind, and a willingness to experiment and explore. All students must have access to an Android or iOS smartphone or tablet throughout the month) ART WTR

Winter 2015

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Department of Music

Mahaney Center for the Arts
72 Porter Field Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753