In Composition, the department has strengths in vocal music, electroacoustic music and sonic art and microtonal music. Paul Mealor has established a reputation in the field of choral music having shot to fame following the performance of his Ubi caritas at the Royal Wedding in 2011, and Phillip Cooke’s music for choir is bringing him to the forefront of contemporary vocal composers. Pete Stollery, Professor of Composition and Electroacoustic Music and Chair of the sound festival, is a leading composer of electroacoustic music whose work is published by empreintes DIGITALes. Suk-Jun Kim's electroacoustic music has won first prizes in major international composition competitions (Bourges, Métamorphoses, and CIMESP).
A vocal music strand also pervades musicology at Aberdeen. Edward Campbell’s research on contemporary European opera provides the perfect complement for compositional activity in this area. There are research strengths in early music, with Frauke Jürgensen leading the UK strand of the international ELVIS project focusing on computational analysis of Palestrina. David Smith works on the prolific Catholic émigré composer Peter Philips, who composed instrumental as well as vocal music. Jasmin Cameron and David Smith both offer particular expertise in the editing of early music, and their editions are widely used by both professional and amateur performers.