Derek Cooper

College Faculty:
Center for Career Readiness & Community Impact

Derek Cooper, Center for Career Readiness and Community Impact Faculty

Derek Cooper’s music has been performed worldwide by groups including Contemporaneous, Sonic Apricity, the Indiana University of Pennsylvania wind ensemble, Jenny Lin, Lisa Pegher, Decoda, ShoutHouse, Bent Knee, Yarn/Wire, Ekmeles, the Iridium Saxophone Quartet, and Blueshift Ensemble. His piece, Kill James, was recently awarded for the New York Composers Circle’s John Eaton Memorial Composition Competition. In 2016, Derek joined the ICEBERG collective, a select and diverse group of emerging New York composers. 

Derek currently teaches music theory at Ramapo College of New Jersey’s School of Contemporary Arts as well as teaching composition and musicianship courses at the Hoff-Barthelson Music School where he also directs the Compose Yourself Festival in collaboration with Copland House. He also teaches music technology at Manhattan School of Music and during the summer, he oversees the composition department for MSM Summer. 

During the pandemic, Derek focused on creating more digital and virtual compositions including a virtual premiere of his Fantasy on Open Strings for the Hoff-Barthelson Music School’s viola club. During 2020, Derek unveiled his Miniatures Project, Volume 1: Puzzles, which has been specifically designed to reimagine the compositional process and performance of new music for the technological possibilities of the 21st century. Many of his current and future projects, focus on being applied to visual platforms such as YouTube, where you can find many of Derek’s compositions now reimagined with visual adaptations along with his new channel, Star Wars Music Analysis, which explores the rhetorical devices of the music within all Star Wars media. 

His music is published through his own website as well as Knightwind Music, JustATheory Press, and NewMusicShelf. For more information and to hear samples of Derek’s work, visit: www.DerekCooperComposer.com.  


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