Student at the piano

Jonah Elrod

Jonah Elrod

Jonah Elrod Visiting Assistant Professor of Music 219.464.6792 VUCA 2507


Jonah Elrod is a composer who researches and incorporates cycles and signals from the Earth into his music. His works are inspired by and engage with issues surrounding our environment and human perception of the natural world. His work Urban Sky Glow (2016) for marimba and live electronics is based on encroaching light pollution and has been recorded by percussionist Brian Baldauff and published on his CD, Canyon. Jonah’s work A Spotless Moon was the winner of the 2013 Scott Wilkinson Composition Contest, and The Vulture, a piece for solo mezzo-soprano, was selected as a winner of the 2016 One Voice Project, organized by Lisa Neher.

He is currently a visiting professor of composition at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where he teaches music composition and upper-level music theory courses. In 2019–2020 he worked as a visiting assistant professor of music at Luther College in Decorah, IA, and in 2016–2017 he worked as an associate lecturer at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. In the summer of 2019 he worked at the Dorian Summer Music Camp in Decorah, IA. as an instructor of music composition and electronic music, and in the summer of 2017, he worked as an instructor of music composition and music theory at Camp COFAC, a summer music program for high school students at UW-Stevens Point. He currently serves as a board member of the Iowa Composers Forum, and is a member of the American Composers Forum, Society of Composers, Inc., SEAMUS, The Society of Music Theory, and the College Music Society. He has a Ph.D. in music composition from the University of Iowa where he served as an associate director of the electronic music studios.

Jonah’s music has been performed around the United States including California, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Louisiana. His music has been performed at many new music festivals including the Society of Composers Inc. National Conference, the John Donald Robb Composers Symposium, the Midwest Composers Symposium, the Exchange of Midwest Composers Conference, the Iowa Composers Forum, the Wisconsin Alliance for Composers Festival, the New Music on the Bayou Festival, the New Music Gathering, the Hot Air Music Festival, the TUTTI Festival, and the New Gallery Series in Cambridge, MA. 

Jonah has studied composition privately with Christopher Shultis, Richard Hermann, Karola Obermüller, Peter Gilbert, José Luis Hurtado, Lawrence Fritts, David Gompper, and Josh Levine. He has also had one-time private lessons with David Lang, Augusta Read Tomas, Michael Harrison, Caroline Shaw, Marilyn Shrude, Elainie Lillios, Michael Fiday, Dan Welcher, Ketty Nez, and David Maslanka. He has presented his music at masterclasses with Konrad Boehmer, Julio Estrada, Barbara Rettagliati, George Tsontakis, Steven Stucky, Chinary Ung, Christopher Rouse, Ken Ueno, George Lewis, Carter Pann, and Jerod Tate.