How to Become a Music Composer?

4 minute read
How to Become a Music Composer?

To start a career in music composition, one must be passionate and empathetic about certain situations. As a Music Composer, you are supposed to work in the entertainment field where music compositions are needed for various purposes such as movies, commercial ads, soundtracks, special events, music recording and production. So, for creating music compositions for different situations be it sad or happy, one must be able to create a certain composition depending upon the scene. If you’re an aspiring music enthusiast then a career in music composition can be a great choice for you. Let’s explore what it takes to become a Music Composer. 

how to become a music composer
Source: Berklee online

Who is a Music Composer?

Music Composers are responsible for writing different types of musical styles using various instruments and software. Music Composers typically write and direct original music to produce and involve music notation or music sheet score, which the performer or singer later performs for the media entertainment. Music Composition varies for different music styles and is focused on four basics of music composition such as melody, harmony, rhythm, tempo and texture.

What Does a Music Composer do? 

As a Music Composer, you’re supposed to fulfil the following responsibilities:

  • Writing original music that orchestras, bands, and other musical groups perform
  • Arranging existing music into new compositions
  • Writing lyrics for music or working with a lyricist
  • Meeting with orchestras, musical groups, and others who are interested in commissioning a piece of music
  • Studying and listening to music of various styles for inspiration
  • Working with musicians to record their music

Skills Required for a career as Music Composer

Here are some skills that may help Music composers in their profession:

  • You must be attentive to details
  • You must be aware of the industry trends
  • You must have great communication skills
  • You must be aware of visualization 
  • You must have great knowledge of music theory
  • You must be able to write music notation for different instrument types and vocal ranges
  • You must be creative and develop original ideas
  • You must be able to produce acoustically appealing arrangements

Guide to Become a Music Composer

If you feel that you possess the skills required for a musical career, then you can begin with a degree in music. However, a degree is not necessary to become a successful music composer but it definitely increases your chances to become one. Here are what qualifications you need to become a Music Composer. 

  1. To begin with the school itself, there are no specific requirements to start a career in music. Hence, you can pursue a career of being a music composer, irrespective of the subjects studied by you in the school.
  1. After completing high school, you can opt for an undergraduate degree such as a BA in Music or a Bachelor in Performing Arts in Music. The duration of the program is 3-4 years and the admission to these courses varies for different universities.
  1. After pursuing an undergraduate degree in Music from the respective university, you can go for graduate courses such as MA in Music or MA in Music Composition. You may have to take an entrance exam with other criteria for admission such as an audition where you will be either required to sing or play an instrument or write a composition of music.
  1. After completing the required degrees, you can apply for jobs in various entertainment fields. You can also become self-employed and start a career on your own.

Best Universities offering Musical Composition Courses

Here’s a list of the best universities in the world offering Musical Composition or related courses such as Bachelor’s in Music, Bachelor’s of Fine arts in Music, Bachelors in Performing Arts in Music, Masters in Music, Masters in Fine Arts in Music and more. 

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Music Composer – Career, Scope and Salary

A Music Composer does more than just create music, putting together music for a certain situation to make the scene more engaging. You can work in various entertainment fields as a Music Composer. From composing music for Movies and Television to creating music for ads, radio programs and more. The salary of a Music Composer depends upon your experience and skills. The average salary of a Music Composer in India is INR 4,00,000 per annum. Salaries for a music composer in various countries are as mentioned below:

CountryAverage salary per annumIn INR
USAUSD 53,29941,28,567
CanadaCAD 56,65833,94,484
AustraliaAUD 81,00043,43,886


What do you need to become a music composer?

Understanding of music theory.
Capability to produce music notation for a variety of instruments and voice ranges.
Having unique ideas.
Capability to create acoustically pleasing compositions
Knowledge of the instruments or vocalists for whom they write.

Is it hard to become a music composer?

This is a highly competitive field. It’s extremely difficult to get that first composing job or to make a solid wage as a Composer, especially for those just starting out.

How long does it take to become a music composer?

In most cases, students interested in pursuing these degrees must audition; many institutions additionally ask students to play their own compositions during a concert. Most music composition bachelor’s degree programmes are tough and require four years or more to finish.

If you have exceptional musical skills that may set you apart from every other composer out there in the industry, then you must opt for a degree in music, to begin with your career as a Music Composer. Do you want to pursue a degree in music abroad? Reach out to Leverage Edu and our experts will provide you with the necessary assistance and guidance. Call us at 1800 57 2000 to book a FREE 30-minutes counselling session today!

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