Christopher Hopkins


Christopher Hopkins

Associate Professor of Music

Director, Center for Excellence in the Arts and Humanities


Christopher Hopkins is a composer, performer, and researcher in musical applications of virtual environments. His work includes compositions in both experimental and traditional forms, with special interests in electroacoustic music and dialectics of historical and contemporary forms. His research in virtual reality coordinates sound synthesis with touch-enabled (haptic) 3-D virtual environments for applications to music composition, musical performance, and interdisciplinary research (VE-SoundSynth).

Hopkins holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Cornell University, where his principal mentors were Karel Husa (composition) and John Hsu (performance), and a Master of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he studied with Donald Erb and Eugene O'Brien. His compositions have been performed at major music festivals in Athens, Basel, Grenoble, Hong Kong, Honolulu, Melbourne, New York, Tanglewood, Toronto, Vienna, and Z├╝rich, in several national and international conferences devoted to experimental contemporary music, and from concert stages in England, Holland, and Switzerland. Media broadcasts including his work have been heard over the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, ├ľstereichischer Rundfunk, Radio Canada, WNYC, and Public Radio International. He works appear on the Innova and SEAMUS labels.

Dr. Hopkins is also a 'cellist, conductor, and violist da gamba. His repertoire spans the sixteenth through the twentieth centuries, with special interests in Baroque solo and Renaissance consort pieces in addition to recent avante garde works that include electronics and experimental instrumental techniques. He has been the director/conductor of contemporary music ensembles at Cornell University and the Cleveland Institute of Music, as well as guest conductor with professional new music ensembles. He serves on the board of directors of the Society for Electroacoustic Music in the United States (SEAMUS).

For Iowa State, Dr. Hopkins has developed a Minor in Music Technology, an Integrated Electronic Arts Cluster for Interdisciplinary Graduate Studies, and new courses in composition and music technology. He is coordinator for the Lipa Festival of Contemporary Music and hosted the 2007 national conference of SEAMUS. He is on the faculty of the graduate program in Human-Computer Interaction. Prior to joining the faculty of Iowa State University in 2004, Dr. Hopkins taught at the University of Illinois, the University of Minnesota, and Syracuse University, offering courses in composition, music theory, electroacoustic music, music technology, and interdisciplinary courses in digital arts.