Publication Date



Open access

Degree Type

Doctoral Essay

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)


Studio Music and Jazz (Music)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

Gary M. Lindsay

Second Committee Member

Whitney F. Sidener

Third Committee Member

Thomas M. Sleeper

Fourth Committee Member

Raul Murciano, Jr.


Americana Suite is a seven movement musical composition inspired by nineteenth and early twentieth century American master paintings. Representative artists from each of the major schools of American painting include Frederic Church, Winslow Homer, Mary Cassatt, Childe Hassam, George Bellows, Edward Hopper and Georgia O'Keeffe. Essentially pluralist in style, the suite is written for ensembles of varying size and genre, spanning from full orchestra and contemporary big band to intimate jazz chamber ensembles and electro-acoustic hybrids. Four of the seven movements are written for jazz ensembles and incorporate improvisation, while the other three orchestral movements explore romantic, impressionist and cinematic idioms. Historical summaries of each school, artist and painting are followed by detailed aesthetic and theoretical analyses of the respective movements. Harmonica virtuoso Howard Levy performs as a special guest artist.


Sunset At Sea; Breakfast In Bed; Embrace; Home Sweet Home; Niagara; Arranger; Jazz Pianist; Composer; New York Night; Nighthawks; Nocturne; Stag At Sharkey's