Date of Award

Spring 5-2017

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis



First Advisor

Ben McIlwain

Advisor Department



There has historically been limited repertoire for trombonists to perform outside of orchestral writing—so limited that the first trombone solo recital was performed by Davis Shuman in 1947. The trombone has been present in the musical community since the mid-fifteenth century, yet it has only recently emerged as a unique, virtuosic instrument. Due to its delayed emergence and limited repertoire, the need to advance the instrument and its musical literature has led to the commission process between artists and composers: Interested parties approach composers with the prospect of writing music for compensation. In this manner, the composer is compensated for writing music, and the interested party has new music to be performed for whatever instrument or instruments they desired. Even more limited than early trombone repertoire is the amount of literature on the commission process as well as the creation of new music for the trombone. This thesis contributes to both areas. Three present-day composers who have been commissioned to write for the trombone were selected as the sample to be interviewed for this thesis. The results were reviewed qualitatively and organized into this thesis to continue the discussion of the creation of new trombone literature. Further, the researcher attempted to provide further insight into the creative process of the composers who write for the trombone.

Included in

Composition Commons