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The Music department invites you to join our community of music creators, performers, and improvisors and explore ways music can make a difference in your life, your community and the world.

We are a fully accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Music and the American Music Therapy Association.

Listen Forward on YouTube

Listen Forward is a video series led by an interdisciplinary team of faculty and students whose aim is to capture the essence of music in New Paltz through a curatorial process of exploration that deepens our understanding of the town we live in.

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Build a foundation of musicianship based on performing, composing, interpreting, and improvising.
  • Engage in a diverse range of multi-ethnic musical styles through study and participation that gives students a broad understanding of cultural, historical, political, and health-wellness contexts. 
  • Work effectively as a contributing member of a small team and larger group
  • Cultivate organizational and team-building skills to create and serve future communities. 
  • Synthesize foundational skills and knowledge to empower creative risk-taking in developing artistic career paths.



Composer and performer Sarah Hennies composes a new work for the SUNY New Paltz community, world premiering on Tuesday, April 20 at 7 p.m. on Listen Forward. Her critically-acclaimed work "Contralto" will be screened on Sunday, April 18 at 1 p.m. in collaboration with The Dorsky Museum

Department of Music on Instagram

Meet Our Full-Time Faculty

Phyllis Chen

Composition, Recording and Electronic Music


Katie Down

Graduate Music Therapy


Mark Dziuba

Jazz Studies


Adam Fontana

Symphonic Band


Christiana Fortune-Reader

Violin and Viola


Edward Lundergan

Choral Ensembles


Kathleen Murphy

Graduate Music Therapy


Alex Peh

Associate Chair, Piano


Susan Seligman

Sight-singing and Ear-training


Kent Smith



Heather Wagner

Graduate Music Therapy


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