Associate Professor of Music Theory
Ciro Scotto’s research in music theory includes creating compositional systems, producing analyses and theoretical models of the music of the 20th and 21st centuries, mathematics and music, and rock music, especially in the area of timbre. His latest work, "Reconciling Order and Content and their Unification in Scherzo for Piano by Charles Wuorinen” appears in Perspectives of New Music. He recently edited the volume The Routledge Companion to Popular Music Analysis: Expanding Approaches along with Kenneth Smith and John Brackett, and contributed the chapter “System 7,” which explores pc-set structures in heavy metal. “The Structural Role of Distortion and Hard Rock,” appears in Music Theory Spectrum and explores the role of distortion in relation to form in hard rock and heavy metal. He also published a large article title “Reexamining Pcset Multiplication, Complex Multiplication, and Transpositional Combination to Determine Their Formal and Functional Equivalence” in Perspectives of New Music. He has published articles in Contemporary Composers, Perspectives of New Music, Music Theory Online, and the Journal of Music Theory, and has delivered conferences papers at SMT, EuroMac, POPMAC, SMA, IMS, AMS, and the American Mathematical Society conferences. He selected twice to attend the Mannes Institute for Advanced Study in Music Theory (2003-Transformation and 2007-Schoenberg and His Legacy). He is on the editorial board member of Perspectives of New Music, and is a member of the Society for Music Theory, MTSNYS, and the College Music Society.
Besides his theoretical work, he is an active composer. He is currently composing a series of works title Between the Hammer and Anvil for electric guitar and percussion to be released by Ravello Records. His works Between Rock and a Hard Place (for electric guitar and percussion ensemble) and Between Rock and a Hard Place-Unplugged (for classical guitar and percussion ensemble) composed for the McCormick Percussion Group appears on a CD produced by Ravello Records. His composition Dark Paradise for Piano and Percussion appears on another McCormick Percussion Group CD released by Ravello Records. Other ensembles that have performed his compositions include the New Music Ensemble (UT Austin), Fear No Music, Rainier Chamber Winds, and the Puget Sound Flute Quartet. He was also Composer in Residence at Allegheny College. He earned his BA and MA from the University of California, Davis (1983/1986), and he earned his DMA from the University of Washington (1995). Additional studies include composition and conducting at the Schweitzer Training Institute, composition with Milton Babbitt and conducting with Gunther Schuller. His prior teaching positions include the University of South Florida (2009-2015), the Eastman School of Music (1997-2009), University of Texas-Austin (1995-97), University of California-Santa Barbara (1991-92), and the Cornish College of the Arts (1990-91).