Courtenay Harter

Courtenay Harter

Associate Professor of Music, Music Theory, Music Cognition, oboe/English horn

Associate Professor Courtenay Harter currently teaches music theory, oboe & English horn, and coaches chamber music at Rhodes College in Memphis, TN.  Most recently, Dr. Harter has been the point person in the development of an interdisciplinary major in Music & Psychology, and teaches courses in the curriculum, including “Psychology of 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 continues to study the compositional procedures of Serge Prokofiev through manuscript studies and sketchbook analyses with the Prokofiev Archive in London, England.  Her more recent research in pedagogy includes instrument-specific excerpts for theoretical studies and new empirical methodologies and pedagogies to complement the Music & Psychology major.

Dr. Harter has presented papers at national and regional meetings of the Society for Music Theory and the College Music Society, as well as international conferences of Music Since 1900 and the Music Analysis Conference. Her most recent presentations have been at the International College Music Society (Stockholm & Helsinki) and the Society of Music Perception and Cognition.  Her more recent publications include “Bridging Common Practice and the Twentieth Century: Cadences in Prokofiev′s Piano Sonatas” (in the 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, and empirical studies of music theory & musicianship pedagogical techniques.

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 the CLEP Humanities Exam.  Dr. Harter is also the Assistant Editor for the Society of Music Theory newsletter, and serves as a board member for the Southern Chapter of the College Music Society.

Dr. Harter bridges the gap between the analysis and the performance of music for her students as an active performer: in addition to being a core member of the Jackson (TN) Symphony Orchestra, Dr. Harter regularly performs solo and chamber music recitals, maintains a private oboe studio, and pursues other freelance opportunities in the mid-south region.  In February 2006, Dr. Harter performed the Eastern United States premiere of Night Song, with the composer, Craig Phillips, on organ.


B.F.A., Carnegie Mellon University - Oboe Performance
M.M., Northwestern University - Music Theory and Oboe Performance
Ph.D., University of Connecticut - Music Theory and Music History