German-American composer Tom Schnauber is Co-Founder of the Boston-based arts organization WordSong, and a former co-president of Composers in Red Sneakers, Boston. He holds a Ph.D. in composition and theory from the University of Michigan. He has also studied French horn performance, ethnomusicology, and did a small stint in Hollywood scoring films no one will ever see.
A versatile composer, Schnauber enjoys writing for a variety of ensembles. His list of more than 60 works includes music for unaccompanied instruments, chamber ensembles, solo voice and vocal ensembles, string orchestra, percussion ensemble, and symphony orchestra. He has also written three regularly performed children’s musicals and one irregularly performed comic chamber opera, as well as incidental music for numerous theatrical productions for Toledo University, Coe College, and Emmanuel College. He currently teaches theory and analysis at the New England Conservatory prep school.
Schnauber has won several awards for composition, including both the grand prize and the music director’s prize from the Chamber Orchestra Kremlin’s 2006 International “Homage to Mozart” competition; the American Composer’s Award from the Columbia Orchestra; and the Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival Meritorious Achievement Award for Original Musical Score. Excerpts from his ungrand opera With Such Friends were selected and performed by the New York City Opera as part of the VOX 2007 Showcase of New American Opera. The entire opera was premiered in August, 2010, by the Bluegrass Opera in Lexington, KY.
Schnauber’s music has been performed throughout the United States and Europe by ensembles such as the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, the Columbia Orchestra, the NIH Philharmonia, Freon Ensemble, the Ulysses String Quartet, and The Great Noise Ensemble. He has received commissions from ensembles such as the Annapolis Chamber Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra Kremlin, The Cambridge Madrigal Singers, The Shakespeare Concerts (Boston), Brave New Works, and the Falls Church Chamber Orchestra. Publishers of his music include Dramatic Publishing, Imagine Music Publishers, and Classical Vocal Repertoire. In 2017, a CD of his music for strings entitled Death and Waltzes, performed by the Russian String Orchestra, was released on the Quartz label.
In addition to writing music and teaching, Tom Schnauber has conducted various ensembles, including the Cannon Valley Regional Orchestra, the Minnesota Symphonic Winds, and a fully staged production of The Gondoliers by the University of Michigan Gilbert and Sullivan Society. He is an avid collector and passionate listener of LPs and CDs, and a proud Trekkie and Whovian.
University of Michigan: Ph.D. in Composition and Music Theory
University of Michigan: M.Mus. in Composition
Freie Universität Berlin: Studies in Ethnomusicology
University of Southern California: Advanced Studies Certificate in Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television
University of Southern California: B.Mus., summa cum laude, in Composition
Associate Professor of Performing Arts (Music): Emmanuel College (Boston)
Composition (undergraduate (studio))
Creating and Producing Music-Theater (incl. composition; Honors level)
ABCs of Music Notation: Dots, Lines, and Squiggles (Pre-Theory)
Harmony Through Creative Composition (Theory I)
Read and Sing (Ear-Training I)
Song: From the Monks to the Monkees (Survey of Western Music)
Music-Theater Through the Ages
Musics of the World
Chair, Performing Arts Department (2006–2014)
Assistant Professor of Composition and Theory: Indiana University (South Bend)
Composition (undergraduate and graduate)
Theory I and II
Form and Analysis (undergraduate and graduate)
Survey of non-Western Music
Adjunct Faculty Instructor: St. Olaf College
Composition (undergraduate and graduate)
Ear-Training I and II
Graduate Student Instructor in Music Theory: University of Michigan
Aural Theory II
Aural Theory, Graduate Review
Aural and Beginning Theory for Musical Theater Students
Graduate Student Instructor in Composition: University of Michigan
Composition for Non-Music Majors