Music Composers and Arranger Career

Job Description: Write and transcribe musical scores.

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Music Composers and Arranger Career

What Music Composers and Arrangers do:

  • Apply elements of music theory to create musical and tonal structures, including harmonies and melodies.
  • Determine voices, instruments, harmonic structures, rhythms, tempos, and tone balances required to achieve the effects desired in a musical composition.
  • Experiment with different sounds, and types and pieces of music, using synthesizers and computers as necessary to test and evaluate ideas.
  • Write changes directly into compositions, or use computer software to make changes.
  • Score compositions so that they are consistent with instrumental and vocal capabilities such as ranges and keys, using knowledge of music theory.
  • Fill in details of orchestral sketches, such as adding vocal parts to scores.
  • Guide musicians during rehearsals, performances, or recording sessions.
  • Transcribe ideas for musical compositions into musical notation, using instruments, pen and paper, or computers.
  • Transpose music from one voice or instrument to another to accommodate particular musicians.
  • Use computers and synthesizers to compose, orchestrate, and arrange music.
  • Explore and develop musical ideas based on sources such as imagination or sounds in the environment.
  • Study original pieces of music to become familiar with them prior to making any changes.
  • Write musical scores for orchestras, bands, choral groups, or individual instrumentalists or vocalists, using knowledge of music theory and of instrumental and vocal capabilities.
  • Rewrite original musical scores in different musical styles by changing rhythms, harmonies, or tempos.
  • Arrange music composed by others, changing the music to achieve desired effects.
  • Copy parts from scores for individual performers.
  • Collaborate with other colleagues, such as copyists, to complete final scores.
  • Accept commissions to create music for special occasions.
  • Create original musical forms, or write within circumscribed musical forms such as sonatas, symphonies, or operas.
  • Confer with producers and directors to define the nature and placement of film or television music.
  • Study films or scripts to determine how musical scores can be used to create desired effects or moods.
  • Write music for commercial mediums, including advertising jingles or film soundtracks.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

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