Elise Bonner

Jul 2017

If you've heard that grad student/postdoc Core professors are hit or miss, she's definitely the former. Professor Bonner was a kind, approachable, and enthusiastic professor who made the class extremely accessible for those without any sort of musical background. The class was definitely much bigger on music history and studying the form of pieces than the technical aspects of music, and in retrospect felt a little superficial - parroting some lines about how X element of the music had Y affect sufficed for a lot of this class, though I guess that's to be expected of a music hum class. The midterms and final were also very reasonable and graded pretty leniently, though most of the stuff on the exams was only covered in class, so attendance was pretty much mandatory. In general, if you do assignments on time and write down what she said about each piece during class, you will probably do well. Oh also, her class covers the entire chronological sequence, from Gregorian chants onwards; if you were looking for a section that skips the "boring" early stuff, hers is not it. She does make the beginning rather enjoyable, though, and is one of the easiest parts of the class.

May 2017

I would strongly recommend you to AVOID this class. She will require you to do a lot of readings and have profound level of musical knowledge. If you expect a relaxed chill music hum class, this is definitely Not the one.