Music Major

Study music performance, history, theory, composition and ethnomusicology, and participate in solo and ensemble performance opportunities, all while working with critically acclaimed musical mentors.

Embracing the beauty, form, history and creation of sound, our music major and minor is a study of Western and non-Western music, broadly designed and rigorously focused.

Our instruction is designed to develop skills that include attention to detail, teamwork, creativity, problem-solving, and precise and self-assured communication.

Representative courses include History of Jazz, History of Black Song, Seven Musical Wonders of the Western World and Introduction to World Music.

Many students go on to prestigious graduate programs in music and become performers, professors, arts managers, critics and more; others enter professional fields like medicine, law and finance. 

Video: Why Music?
Jazz Ensemble at Pomona College
Jazz ensemble rehearsal
Glee Club rehearsal
Glee Club rehearsal
In class with Professor Joti Rockwell
In class with Professor Joti Rockwell

What You’ll Study

    • History and theory of Western art music
    • Solo and ensemble performance
    • Ethnomusicology
    • Senior colloquium and project
All of the music department’s 40 pianos are Steinways: three in Bridges Hall of Music and 37 in Thatcher Music Building.

Learning at Pomona

Nathania Hartojo

"Le tombeau de Couperin": Nathania Hartojo '20

As an oboist with the Pomona College orchestra, Hartojo performed what she describes as one of the hardest pieces of orchestral literature that oboe players can play.

Johnny Wang '17

Johnny Wang ’17 and the Pomona College Orchestra

Johnny Wang ’17 was the winner of the 2013 Concerto Competition and performed Liszt's Piano Concerto No. 1 with the orchestra in 2014.

Jacqueline Cordes
Jacqueline Cordes ’25

Music theory and music history classes didn’t put up walls around my creativity—it broke them down. … I couldn’t be happier with the Music Department, and I’m grateful for gaining a greater picture of what music can be.

Faculty & Teaching

Professors who are globally renowned for their musical excellence and innovation will guide you. They are performers, composers and music historians—and proven mentors who will give you individualized attention and both inspire and collaborate with you. 

Professor Donna M. Di Grazia

The opportunities to perform at Pomona College are among the most extraordinary for any liberal arts college. We have a wide range of ensembles for music majors and for non-majors. They collaborate together, regardless of their area of study. The involvement in music ensembles and in coursework here in the music department is open to everyone.