Theory and Composition


Courtenay Harter

[B.F.A., Carnegie Mellon University; M.M., Northwestern University; Ph.D., University of Connecticut]

Dr. Courtenay Harter teaches music theory, oboe and English horn and coaches chamber music. Her previous teaching appointments include Georgia State University, Oberlin College′s Conservatory of Music, and the University of Connecticut.

 Of her many research interests, Dr. Harter is particularly attracted to the pedagogy of music theory; her dissertation study, entitled "Phrase Structure in Prokofiev′s Piano Sonatas," uses familiar terminology to describe formal procedures within the context of neoclassic characteristics. She has presented papers at national and regional meetings of the Society for Music Theory and the College Music Society. Her more recent publications include "Bridging Common Practice and the Twentieth Century: Cadences in Prokofiev′s Piano Sonatas" (in Journal of Music Theory Pedagogy) and "Theory through Ferling and Excerpts: A Winning Combination" (in The Double Reed: Journal of the International Double Reed Society). Her current research projects include an anthology of instrument-specific excerpts for theoretical studies, as well as sketchbook studies with the Serge Prokofiev Archive in London, England.

Dr. Harter is a faculty consultant for the Advanced Placement Music Theory Exam and also published teaching materials and resources through the College Board (in the 2007 AP® Teacher′s Guide in Music Theory and in the "Teachers′ Resource Catalog," on the AP® Central website). She has also been on the test development committee for othe CLEP Humanities Exam.

Dr. Harter continues to be an active performer; these experiences aid in bridging the gap between the analysis and the performance of music for the students. Read about Dr. Harter′s theory class from the student′s perspective:  Dr. Harter Cultivates Musicianship


Thomas Bryant

received his B.M. and M.M. degrees from the University of Georgia, and completed his D.M. degree at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. Dr. Bryant lists his piano teachers and mentors to include Despy Karlas, Jane Douglas, Hans Petermandl, Maria Regina Seidlhofer-Luponi, and Donald Isaak. He has studied accompanying with Laurence Davis and Erik Werba.

Dr. Bryant has earned an impressive reputation both as a solo pianist as well as an artistic accompanist. He is active throughout the region as a concert artist, and is in high demand as a recital accompanist. In addition to his rigorous performing activity locally, he travels nationally and internationally in his piano performance.

Dr. Bryant teaches piano, accompanying, and music appreciation at Rhodes College.



David Shotsberger

[B.M. and M.M, Pennsylvania State University; D.M.A, University of Memphis]

Dr. David Shotsberger joined the Rhodes faculty in 2014 where he teaches music technology and composition. Previous teaching position and appointments include the Pennsylvania State University and the University of Memphis.

Dr. Shotsberger is an active composer, arranger and songwriter with domestic and international performances of his orchestral works by the Atlanta, Memphis, and Charleston Symphonies as well as chamber works performed by Relache (Philadelphia, PA) and the Ensemble Eclipse (Beijing, China). Recent recording credits include collaborations with Grammy- and Dove-award winner Bruce Carroll, A Band of Thieves, and This Glorious Cause.

As a teacher, Dr. Shotsberger is known for a no-nonsense, practical pedagogical approach in which he strives to help his students find their unique creative “voice” through the coalescence of the “Three T’s”: theory, technique and talent. This practical approach permeates all aspects of his musical career, including his position as the Minister of Music at Advent Presbyterian Church in Cordova, TN.