All students in our degree programs study with one of our composition faculty members. The interests of the faculty are collectively quite broad, representing traditional concert music, film music, electronic music, popular music, opera, and musical theater. During their time in our programs, students are free to rotate to any faculty member's studio for one of the semesters of study.


  • Stephen Gorbos, D.M.A.


     Associate Professor, Composition-Theory Area Head, and Chair of the Department of Theory, History, and Composition.

    American composer Stephen Gorbos composes concert music for a range of ensembles and soloists. His music navigates a wide palette of disparate traditions, creating a synthesis between styles as diverse as American rhythm & blues, western classical music, and Javanese gamelan.

    Stephen has had his works performed in concert halls across the U.S. and in Europe by musicians such as the Minnesota Orchestra, the Albany Symphony, the NOW Ensemble, Roomful of Teeth, and violist Wendy Richman.

    Stephen teaches composition, theory, and music technology.

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  • Andrew Earle Simpson, D.M.

    Andrew Simpson

    Ordinary Professor, Director of the M.M. Stage Music Degree

    Andrew Earle Simpson (D.M., Indiana University, M.M., Boston University, B.M., Butler University), composer, pianist, and organist, is a professor at the Departments of Music of The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC and Head of the division of Theory-Composition. A composer of opera, silent film, orchestral, chamber, and choral music, he explores how music interacts with other arts, in concert and on stage.


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  • Joel Phillip Friedman, D.M.A.

    Joel Friedman

    Lecturer in Music Composition

    Composer Joel Phillip Friedman’s natural creative impulse is to work across genres and compose music equally informed by his classical training and his engagement with the vernacular. His varied portfolio includes work for small and large ensembles, musical theater, opera, dance, film, jazz, and rock.

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