Faculty Details

Igor Korneitchouk



B.M., Case Western Reserve University / Cleveland Institute of Music

M.M., Case Western Reserve University / Cleveland Institute of Music

Ph.D., University of California, San Diego


Dr. Korneitchouk received his B.M and M.M degrees  from the prestigious Cleveland Institute of Music at Case Western Reserve University. His Ph.D. in Composition is from the University of California, San Diego. He has composed over 83 compositions between 1975-2004 and released  11 CDs of his music between 1997-2012.

He was awarded grants from University of California Regents and the American Music Center for the performance of his Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra: Desert Flowers. In 1983, he won the CalArts Young Composers Contest with his composition, Splinters of a Shattered Space: Five Frames for Cello and Piano, which was subsequently performed at the CalArts Contemporary Music Festival. In 1989, he received a National Endowment of the Humanities fellowship to study Jazz at Yale University. In the UK, Gerard Schwarz conducted one of his compositions for the Royal Liverpool Orchestra to be released on CD for the MMC label.

His compositional esthetics are eclectic, having a wide palette as the result of the broad multi-culturally and historically diverse musical universe he inhabits and the atomization of this rich experience by our modern media. He enjoys writing in various styles and media: minimalism, post-serial, Cage-inspired, electronic/spectral, jazz-influenced, timbral-centric music with extended techniques, neo-classic, and neo-romantic music.

Published reviews of his music have been consistent. No matter what “style” (or “musical attitude”) he chooses to write in, it is said that his “voice” is  distinctive, invariably described as having “formal strength” (Los Angeles Times), being “fascinating... [and] breaking new ground” (Avant Magazine) and having a personality full of whimsy, angular gestures, gentleness, and delicacy, and tons of kinetic energy when needed. From a review of his CD Chamber Music in a  2009 issue of American Record Guide: “Igor Korneitchouk attributes his aggressive eclecticism both to a diverse musical universe and the atomization of modern media. From the austere spookiness of the 1980 Splinters of a Shattered Space for cello and piano to the amiable tunefulness of the 2002 Song and Dance, these pieces jump restlessly from one style to another, held together by an emphasis on the intensity of the moment. (It’s not surprising to learn that Korneitchouk got an NEH to study jazz following his classical training.) This album includes a spare but playful musical word game, New Scrabble, and a rather brittle musical portrait of the Phoenix rising from its ashes. My favorites are the seven evocative Impressions of Maine for solo violin, written when the composer was 19 on a family vacation, and a charming, strutting exercise in syncopation from Song and Dance called Cutting the Rug. The performers get through their daunting, varied assignments with aplomb.”


Dr. Korneitchouk has taught at San Diego Mesa College full-time since 1990. From 1996-1998, he served as Chair of the Music Department and again from 2003-2007. The Electronic Music Studio (EMS) and its curriculum are the direct result of his activities as Chair for the Music Department. His other accomplishments as Department Chair include creating a Recital Hour course, MUSI 123, open to the general public but also available to students for credit, and establishing a composition curriculum, MUSI 206A & MUSI 206B.


Dr. Korneitchouk is Professor of Music at San Diego Mesa College where he teaches classes in Composition and Music Technology for the Music Department. He also performs in the La Jolla Symphony and is a founding member of the performance art group Touch Me Hear, exploring the boundaries between music, art, drama, technology, performance and audience participation.

Department(s): Music

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