PERF 3023 Songwriting and Composer Collaborations

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 102549

Coordinator Bruce Crossman Opens in new window

Description This subject extends on the creative principles and practical experience in the range of compositional techniques and skills in the preceding subject Composition and Creativity. It will have two focuses: songwriting in both popular and art-music traditions to allow for the exploration of lyrics/texts; and composer collaborations with large scores for film, photography and dance. Students will work in a wide variety of commonly-employed artistic media and genres at a higher level than in the preceding subject. They will acquire the ability to write for larger instrumental combinations in cross-artform collaborations and songwriting skills. Practical workshops using compositional principles through student improvisation within creative groups will provide sonic demonstration of compositional ideas in relation to songwriting and other media. The assessments will include both notated scores (with visual media options) and recordings (improvisation; one notated score), in keeping with the Internet distribution age.

School Humanities & Comm Arts

Discipline Music

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) PERF 2015 OR
PERF 2004

Equivalent Subjects LGYA 1104 - Music Composition Advanced PERF 3010 - Music Composition Text and Visual Interactions

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Develop an understanding of the compositional techniques and styles utilised by late 20th and early 21st century composers from the western art music traditions, popular music, cross-cultural and other musical traditions, including improvisation practices as compositional design
  2. Apply this understanding to their own compositional practices
  3. Acquire skills in text-setting and vocal writing, including songwriting (popular and art music styles)
  4. Become adept at exploring and employing the full range of possibilities of instrumentation including extended techniques, orchestral textures and sound sources that are not based on traditional or standard instrumentation
  5. Acquire skills in writing and collaborating for visual media (for example, dance, photography, and screen)
  6. Examine and gain practical facility in dealing with the technical and aesthetic issues surrounding composition for a variety of sound media
  7. Be able to produce reflective writing about the creative compositional process.
  8. Those attending Art of Sound will be able to: Develop, implement and promote Art of Sound activities and projects, guiding and collaborating with students across the Music program to further progress leadership, advanced production and performance skills. Involvement in Art of Sound will culminate in contribution to the program and coordination of the Creativity Unlimited Music Festival.

Subject Content

1. A range of composition strategies and skills developed through practical work, including scored work, digital recordings, cross-disciplinary collaborations and improvisation
2. Compositional techniques and styles in the Western tradition
3. Compositional techniques and styles in popular music
4. Compositional techniques and styles in cross-cultural and other musical traditions
5. Compositions that explore the interaction of text and visual media with music, including a digital recording with emphasis on collaborations with other cross-disciplinary artists
6. Text setting and vocal writing, including a precursor recorded improvisation and emphasis on songwriting (popular and art music styles)
7. Instrumentation/Orchestration, including orchestral writing
8. Reflective practice paradigms


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Professional Task 5 minutes (composition); 5 minutes (group improvisation) 30 N Individual
Professional Task 5-9 minutes 50 N Individual
Essay 1000 words 20 N Individual
Professional Task Min 2 hrs per fortnight S/U Y Individual

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)

Penrith (Kingswood)


Subject Contact Bruce Crossman Opens in new window

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