Heath Mathews, Ph.D.

Composer - Arranger - Educator


As an active composer in the Minneapolis area for the past several years, Heath Mathews has been called a "gifted young composer" who "writes with a clarity of musical voice." The compositional interests of Dr. Mathews include a wide range of musical genres and styles. Playing in rock and jazz groups in his youth, the composer draws influence equally from the vernacular music of contemporary culture, western art music, and world music.

After completing his B.A. in music in 2000, Heath Mathews entered the graduate composition program at the University of Minnesota in 2001. Mathews has studied composition with Alex Lubet, Douglas Geers, Anthony Gatto, Bill Banfield, Christopher Hopkins (electro-acoustic music), Judith Zaimont (composition and orchestration) and Dominick Argento (orchestration). The composer completed a Ph.D. in music composition in 2007.

As an educator, Dr. Mathews is currently an online instructor for Troy University. He teaches courses in music fundamentals, popular music studies, music appreciation, and music theory. Additionally, the composer designed and taught a six-week enrichment series at Harriet Bishop Elementary School in Savage, Minnesota. The series, “Making Music,” assists elementary students in exploring various forms of improvised music.

In addition to composing and educating, Mathews has maintained an interest in the area of popular music studies. Following this interest in popular music analysis, Mathews has presented conference papers on topics such as the music of Jimi Hendrix and the music of Green Day. The composer has also served as a popular music panel chair at MPCA/ACA conferences and assisted in the design of undergraduate popular music courses at the University of Minnesota.

Heath Mathews has received commissions from ensembles, theatrical production companies and individual performers.  Dr. Mathews has also been the recipient of two Jerome Emerging Composer (JFund) awards, a Minnesota Artist Initiative Grant, multiple ASCAP awards, and various arts grants.