Butch Rovan: Teaching at Brown University, 2004-2011

Thesis & Dissertation Projects

ben nicholson

This page showcases a selection of the works my students have created as part of their undergraduate or graduate thesis/dissertation projects.

The undergraduate senior honors thesis is one type of capstone project a Brown senior can pursue. Over the course of two semesters the student works on an independent project of their own design. We meet weekly (or more), and the projects often involve sound, image, software programming, hardware design, and performance. The goal is to bring together the various interests a student has discovered during their time at Brown, culminating in a final performance or installation.

The graduate thesis and dissertation projects reflect the myriad interests of our incredibly creative and diverse graduate students. These projects also typically investigate the intersection of media and technologies, including sound, image, software, hardware, and performance. The Master's thesis evolves over the course of a year, while the Ph.D. dissertation project is several years in the making.


love_me, a one-man musical play by Ben Nicholson. Peformed by Ben Nicholson, 2011.
Undergraduate senior honors thesis.


simon, a performance for human, video, and surround sound by Peter Bussigel.
Peformed by Peter Bussigel. Master's thesis project, spring 2010.


arvid tomayko-peters

Climate Controlled, an interactive geophonic music installation. By Arvid Tomayko-Peters, 2007.
Undergraduate senior honors thesis.









Soroboro, for bass clarinet and interactive sound & image. By Alex Dupuis, 2009. Undergraduate senior honors thesis. Click on images for score and documentation.

Alex Dupuis: Soroboro by MEME at Brown


The Fault of Epimetheus, an oratorio for soprano, tenor, chamber ensemble, custom instruments and interactive eletronics. By Kevin Patton, 2010. (excerpt) Dissertation composition.









Left: The Fault of Epimetheus, rehearsal. Right: video of Patton's instruments in performance with the MEME ensemble.


Solar Rattle, by Bevin Kelley. Master's thesis project, spring 2011.


Digimancy, by Jordan Bartee. Master's thesis project, spring 2011.









Left: Aeolian Machine, by Cordey Lopez, 2008. Right: robotically-enhanced double bass, by Greg Kuwaye, 2008. Both projects were completed as part of a senior honors thesis.

Alistair, for tenor saxophone, mixed ensemble, and interactive electronics. By Josh Marshall, 2008. Undergraduate senior honors thesis.