Marian L. Harrison, D.M
D.M., Indiana University
M.M., Georgia State University
B.M., University of Georgia
Lecturer of Theory and Composition
Fine Arts Building, Office 106
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Dr. Marian L. Harrison is a native of Atlanta. She is a composer, arranger, music copyist, teacher, playwright, and photographer. In August 2007, she became the first African-American to receive a doctorate in music composition from Indiana University's prestigious Jacobs School of Music in Bloomington, Ind. While attending Indiana University, she studied composition with David Baker, Sven-Davis Sandstrom, David Dzubay and P.Q. Phan.
Dr. Harrison’s other previous institutions of study include the University of Georgia, where she received a bachelor's degree in music education (1997), and Georgia State University, where she received her master's degree in music composition (2001). In addition, Dr. Harrison studied music composition at the Royal Academy of Music in Stockholm, Sweden, and received the Certificate of Visiting Student during the 2004-2005 academic year.
Various ensembles including Indiana University’s Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, the Spelman College Glee Club, and the Thamyris New Music Ensemble have performed Dr. Harrison’s works. In February 2007, she commissioned Atlanta-based artist, Wilhelmina Fowlkes, to create "Lift Every Voice," an acrylic painting based on the Negro National Anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” which was interpreted by members of the Indiana University African American Dance Company and performed her arrangement of the anthem. From 2005 to 2007, she produced the Extensions of the Tradition Concert Series. This annual event, held on the campus of Indiana University, features the music of African-American classical composers.
As an educator, Dr. Harrison has worked in many capacities including Ridgeview Middle School in Georgia’s Fulton County School System, where she was an award-wining choral director and general music teacher; the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra in Atlanta, where she taught college preparatory music theory; Interlochen Arts Camp in Interlochen, Michigan, where she was an instructor of music theory and composition; and now she returns to Spelman College to be a lecturer of music theory and composition.