Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)



Document Type



The standard repertoire of the viola is quite small when compared to that of the rest of the string family; the instrument came of age in the twentieth century, which brought about the first important virtuosos and compositions for the instrument. In the twenty-first century, the repertoire of the viola continues to grow, and the author, being both a violist and composer, feels it is important to continue contributing quality music to the instrument, both through his own compositions and through working with other living composers. The purpose of this research was to record a full-length CD of new works for viola and provide descriptions and performance guides of these pieces, as well as biographical sketches of their respective composers and a detailed guide to the recording and editing process. The project is in two main parts: the CD, which was entirely engineered, recorded, and edited by the author and performer; and the paper, which talks about the recorded pieces as well as a sort of practical guide to self-producing a classical CD. The featured pieces include Peter Dayton’s Fantasy for Viola and Piano, Christopher Hallum’s A Day in Monroe County, and the author’s own Suite for Viola and Piano and Milestone Miniatures for Solo Viola. As classical music in general is not often self-recorded or self-produced like the majority of more popular musical genres, the author intends this project to encourage more performers to self-produce their own projects as well. Each of the first four chapters offers insights into the compositional processes of the pieces as well as guides to successful performances of them; the first two chapters also give biographies of the composers, detailing their relationships to the author. The final chapter discusses the recording process, including the microphones and techniques used, as well as the methods used in post-production and mixing, and the challenges faced during the process. The author hopes this project will make a good case for all of these pieces as viable additions to the standard repertoire, and that more musicians will be inspired to make their own recordings.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Goldstein, Elias



Included in

Music Commons