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Community Hall

Community Hall 305

1650 SW Pioneer Place

1650 SW Pioneer Place
Corvallis, OR 97331
PhD: Musicology. Critical Studies and Experimental Practices Program in Music at the University of California, San Diego. Advisor: George E. Lewis.
Dissertation: "The Myth of Absence: Representation, Reception, and the Music of Experimental Women Improvisors."
MA: Music Composition, Mills College. Composition: Pauline Oliveros, Alvin Curran. Piano: Julie Stienberg
B.Music: McGill University. Louis-Philippe Pelletier, piano; Composition: Alcides Lanza, John Rea
University of Florida, Gainesville. Piano Performance: Boaz Sharon; and Harpsichord, Willis Bodine
Interlochen Arts Academy (High School) Piano (classical and jazz) & Composition
Honors and Awards: 

Commissions, Compositions, Arrangements, Soundtracks: 


2019     Reconstruction: America After the Civil War. Executive Producer: Henry Louis Gates, PBS. Paul Miller, composer. 4 Episodes. Credited Arranger.


2018     Oregon Arts Commission and High Desert Museum, Bend.: She Breathes Water: A Tryptich: Installation, Performance and Sound Art work Commissioned Artist: 2018-2019


           New work: An Apple for My Teacher: for the Creative Music Guild Improvisors Summit Festival , Commissioned Composer. July 2018.


Original Film Score. Back to God’s Country, Original Feature Film Soundtrack (70 minutes), for Kino-Lorber, Women Pioneers of Film, Commissioned Composer. 2018


2017     Commissioned Composition. Chanson de Fleurs ­ Eleanor of Aquitaine for oboe and soundscape. Premiered by oboist Catherine Lee. Willamette University Faculty Recital Series, Hudson Concert Hall, Rodgers Music Center, Willamette University, Salem, OR.

 Commissioned Composition. Proxemics for large ensemble. Premiered by Matt Hannafin (percussion), Lee Elderton (clarinet), Andre St. James (bass), and Catherine Lee (oboe). Extradition Series, Leaven Community Center, Portland, OR.


2016     Composition. Around and Round by Dana Reason. Dana Reason (piano) and Catherine Lee (oboe). The Extradition Series, Portland, OR, 2016. Composition is a series of modular pieces and soundscapes based on the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest project with Dr. Mark Harmon (ROT: The Afterlife of Trees, a multi-media exhibition at the Arts Center, Corvallis, OR.)


2016     Composition. Music for Children: Sounding the World. A suite of pieces for percussion, voice, piano, violin and cello. Ashbrook Independent School. Corvallis, OR.


2014     Commissioned Composition. Pauline’s Polka, duet for piano. Performed by Angela Carlson/Becky Jeffers, Between the Cracks Forum, Corvallis, OR.  Premier performance: 2012, Jeffers/Carlson, St James Lutheran Church, Portland, OR.

Additional Information: 

Bibliography (Articles/Citations/Reviews/Interviews) – Selected—


These reflect projects I have either worked on or have been featured in.


Water shapes High Desert Museum exhibit Desert Reflections: Water Shapes the West” weaves science, art and contemporary issues. The Bulletin, by David Jasper April 24, 2019


“Reconstruction: America After the Civil War” Review. New York Times, Mike Hale, April 9, 2019

This is a review of the 2 part documentary by Henry Louis Gates. DJ Spooky composer, Dana Reason, arranger. (Discusses the PBS series)


“How the South Won the Civil War” By Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, April 1, 2019

April 1, 2019. (Discusses the Reconstruction research of Henry Louis Gates and The Reconstruction PBS series).

Alonso-Minutti, Ana R. “Gatas y Vatas: Female Empowerment and Community-Oriented Experimentalism.” In Experimentalisms in Practice: Music Perspectives from Latin America, edited by Ana R. Alonso-Minutti, Eduardo Herrera, and Alejandro L. Madrid, 131-160. New York: Oxford University Press, 2018.


“Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers Blu-ray Review” by Lauren, December 3, 2018.


“28 Days, 28 Films” By Manohla Dargis and A.O. Scott, Feb. 1, 2018

Thrills, Tears and the Real Gone Girls of Cinema – The New York Times July, 2018


Thrills, Tears and the Real Gone Girls of Cinema, NY Times, By Manohla Dargis

  • July 19, 2018


Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers (Blu-ray)

Kino // Unrated // Feb, 2019 // Region A Reviewed by Tyler Foster




“Navigable Structures and Transforming Mirrors: Improvisation and Interactivity” by Dana Reason. Text used at Harvard Graduate School Fromm Seminar in Composition (MUSIC 271F) by visiting scholar George E. Lewis, Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and Edwin H. Case Professor of American Music at Columbia University. (February 13, 2017).


Oxford Handbook of Critical Improvisation Studies Vol. 1 & 2. Ed. George E. Lewis and Benjamin Piekut. Oxford University Press, 2017. Citation/Footnotes about my research.


Tomorrow is the Question: New Directions in Experimental Music Studies; Ed. Benjamin Piekut. University of Michigan Press, 2014. citation about my research, 2017.


Miller, Paul. “Forests: A Parallax View in Music.” Posted in Explorers Journal: Stories from the Field, a National Geographic blog, November 9, 2016.


Aaron, Kayin. “A Conversation with Dana Reason Part 1.” Kayin Aaron blog, 2016.


Corbett, John. A Listener’s Guide to Free Improvisation, University of Chicago Press, March 2016.


Tangari, Joe. Review of Angle of Vision by Dana Reason. Downbeat Magazine, February 2013.    


McInally, Mike. “Dana Reason Shares Her ‘Angle of Vision’.” Corvallis Gazette Times, August 22, 2013.


Smith, Steve. “Pauline Oliveros Profile + Night After Night Bonus Track With Dana Reason,” Night After Night blog, August 12, 2012.


McInally, Mike.  “Music Series Honors Women Composers and Musicians,” Corvallis Gazette Times, October 26, 2012.


Silsbee, Kirk. Review of Revealed recording by the Dana Reason Trio. Downbeat Magazine, 2011.


Lewis, Eric. The Video Art of Sylvia Safdie,, McGill-Queen’s University Press, Kingston, ON, Canada, March, 2013.  [22] “Dana/Ben,” 4:08 minute video; two unrelated videos are shown simultaneously: Dana as she improvises at piano; the other, Ben Harkarvy superimposed footage.


May, Lawrence Joseph. “Sill Listening: Pauline Oliveros Commemoration,” Musicworks, Spring 2017, issue 127. Features “Folded Subjects: Olive Rose” photo by Dana Reason.





Water in the West, High Desert Museum, 2018-2019


Artist in Residence, Playa, Summer Lake, Oregon, 2018


Artist in Residence, Continuum, Brooklyn, NYC, March 2018


Artist in Residence, The Cabin at Shotpouch Creek,  Spring Creek Project, Oregon State University, Summer, 2016.


Artist in Residence, New Media Gallery, Jack Straw Studios, Seattle, WA: record and master new compositions and improvisations for piano, cello, bass, and drums. 2013.




2019     “Gold Rush,” Charlie Chaplin, live film scoring by Dana Reason (for Jon Lewis film course), OSU, April 30, 2019


“Way Down East,” DW Griffith, live film scoring by Dana Reason (for Jon Lewis film course), OSU, April 16, 2019


“The Cheat”, Cecil B. DeMille, live film scoring by Dana Reason (for Jon Lewis film course) , De Mille, OSU, April 9, 2019


“Metropolis” Fritz Lang, live film scoring, Dana Reason (for Jon Lewis film course , Darkside Theater, January, 2019


James Ilgenfritz, contrabass, Dana Reason, piano: Joan Truckenbrod tapestry, Site of Sound, 2019

Roscoe Mitchell Concert. Park Avenue Armory, NYC March 6, 2019

Re:Soundings Trio: Spectrum, NYC March 4, 2019

Re:Soundings Trio: Portland State University, Feb., 2019

Re:Soundings Trio: Reed College, Feb, 2019

          Re:Soundings Trio: Willamette University, Feb, 2019

            Re:Soundings Trio: Site of Sound, Truckenbrod Gallery, Corvallis, Feb., 2019



2018     Trio: Lighting, Sound, Computers: Bruce Pennycook, Dana Reason and  UT Austin Festival, October 2018


Pointed Percussionists, Performance with Elana Mann’s “Blame Game Rattle” Pitzer College, California, October, 2018


Tea and Fences Skype Performance with Live Audience. Featured Ivan Manzanilla, Mexico and Dana Reason, Bend, Audience in Chicago, October, 2018


Brooklyn Academy of Music, Back to God’s Country, Live Performance with Film July 2018


An Apple for My Teacher, Dana Reason Ensemble Headliner, with visuals Improvisers Summit of Portland, July 2018


Interiorities, Dana Reason/Bruce Pennycook, Festival in Guanajuato, Mexico, April 2018


Tea and Fences, Performance. Featured Mehdi Behbudi, Tehran and Dana Reason, Corvallis with audience in Los Angeles, April 2018.


Continium, Andrew Drury and Dana Reason, Soup and Sound Series, March , 2018
            Dana Reason Solo, Spectrum, NYC March, 2018


2017     Performance. Andrew Drury (drummer/composer/improviser), Luthor Maggot (electronics) Michael Gamble (guitar), and Dana Reason (keyboard/found objects).  Red Room Series, Interzone, Corvallis, OR. 2017.


            Performance. Lisa Cay Miller, “Lessing Stories.” Guest pianists Rachel Isaasa and  Dana Reason. Pyatt Hall, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra School of Music, Vancouver, BC, Canada. October 21, 2016.


            Performance. Film soundtrack, Birth of A Movement, music by Paul D. Miller, PBS, February, 2017.


2016     Performance. Film soundtrack, “Within our Gates” music by Paul D. Miller. Pioneers of African­ American Cinema, Kino Lorber (5 Disc Collection of Pioneers of African­ American Cinema), 2016.


            Performance. Film soundtrack, “Body and Soul” music by Paul D. Miller. Pioneers of African­ American Cinema, Kino Lorber (5 Disc Collection of Pioneers of African­ American Cinema), 2016.


            Performance. Vinny Golia with ensemble,  Improvisation Summit of Portland 2016, Creative Music Guild, Disjecta Contemporary Art Center, Portland, OR.


            Performance. Live Ensemble Performance for community radio fund raiser, KBOO Radio Live, Portland, OR.


            Performance. Ralph Carney (saxophone) Dana Reason (keyboard), Ryan Biesack (percussion), and Mike Gamble (guitar).  Red Room Series, Interzone, Corvallis, OR. 


            Performance. “Edges” by  Christian Wolff (1968). Featuring: Matt Carlson (electronics), Catherine Lee (oboe), Dana Reason (piano/composition). The Extradition Series, Leaven Community Center, Portland, OR, 2016.


            Performance. ReSoundings Trio: John Savage (flute), Catherine Lee (oboe), Dana Reason (piano/soundscape). Smith Recital Hall, Western Oregon University, Monmouth, OR.


2015     Performance. Dana Reason Trio: Peter Valsamis (drums), Jeff Schwartz (bass), Dana Reason (piano). Cultural Alliance of Long Beach (CALB), Long Beach, CA.


            Performance. “Nonaah” by Roscoe Mitchell. John Savage (flute), Catherine Lee (oboe), Dana Reason, (piano).  Improvisation Summit of Portland 2015, Creative Music Guild, Disjecta Contemporary Art Center, Portland, OR.


2014     Performance. Ensemble Concert with Barre Phillips, Lori Freedman, John Heward, Joe McPhee and Dana Reason. MacDonald Stewart Art Center, Guelph Jazz Festival Colloquium, International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada.


            Performance. Ensemble Concert with Barre Phillips, Lori Freedman, John Heward, Joe McPhee and Dana Reason. Suoni Per II Popolo, Montreal, QC, Canada.


Performance. “Voyager”’ by George Lewis featuring Kyle Bruckmann (oboe), George Lewis (computer) and Dana Reason. Sweet Thunder: SFCMP Festival of Electro-Acoustic Music, Fort Mason Center for Arts and Culture, San Francisco, CA.


            Performance. Han Bennink and Mary Oliver. duos and trios. Creative Music Guild, Redeemer Lutheran Church, Portland, OR, 2014. 


            Performance. Vinny Golia (CalArts), Ryan Biesack (percussion), Michael Gamble (guitar), Kayan Aaron (electronics/piano) , Dana Reason (piano). Between the Cracks Forum, The Arts Center, Corvallis, OR. 


2013     Performance. Ricardo Tejero (clarinet/tenor saxophone) Maraatsj (violin) and Dana Reason (piano), and Petyr Veenstra (light design). Set 3, Season Ending Concert, Oorsprong Curators Series, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


            Performance. Mary Oliver (violin) and Dana Reason (piano). Warehouse Elementenstraat, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


            Performance. Amsterdam Trio: Lori Goldston (cello), Mary Oliver (violin) and Dana Reason (piano). Onafhankelijk Cultureel Centrum In It (OCCII), Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


            Performance. James Fei, Chris Brown and Dana Reason Trio. New Music Center, San Francisco, CA.


            Performance. Quintet with Stuart Dempster, Kevin Patton, Lori Goldston, Greg Sinnabaldi, and Dana Reason. Chapel Performance Space, Wallingford’s Good Shepherd Center, Seattle, WA.


            Performance. Justin Morrison (dance) with Dana Reason Trio. Between the Cracks Forum, The Arts Center, Corvallis, OR.


            Performance. Lori Goldston (cello) and Dana Reason (piano). Chapel Performance Space, Wallingford’s Good Shepherd Center, Seattle, WA.



2012     Performance. Dana Reason (piano), Lori Freedman (bass clarinet) and John Heward (percussion) and Yves Charuest (saxophone). L’Envers, Montreal, QC, Canada.


            Performance. Excerpts from Border Crossing.  Dana Reason (piano) and Peter Valsamis (drums). The Stone, New York, NY.


            Performance. Dana Reason (piano). Spectrum, New York, NY.


            Performance. Dana Reason (piano), Jason Robinson (saxophone), and Peter Valsamis (drums). The Lilypad, Cambridge, MA.


            Performance. “To Valerie Solanas and Marilyn Monroe In Recognition Of Their Desperation” by Pauline Oliveros. Dana Reason (piano).  Premiere directed by Sean Griffin for Opera Povera, 2012 New Original Works (NOW) Festival Redcat, Los Angeles, CA.


            Performance. Dana Reason (piano), Donald Robinson (drums), Biggi Vinkeloe (saxophone), Scott Looney and others. Studio 1510, Oakland, CA.

Office Hours: 
This changes each term. Please see applicable syllabi or contact the Music Office for more information.

Profile Field Tabs


Dana Reason is a Canadian-born composer, improviser, pianist, and music researcher. She was part of The Space Between trio with electronic music pioneer Pauline Oliveros; is documented on over 14 recordings, and has created music for film, theatre, and large and small ensembles. In fall 2016, she toured Oregon with Paul Miller (aka DJ Spooky) and his Heart of a Forest project. As a pianist, she appears on the soundtracks Within Our Gates and Body and Soul on Pioneers of African-American Cinema (Kino-2016) as well as the PBS documentary soundtrack - Birth of a Movement (2017). Her composition "Currents" for wind ensemble (Mark Records) as well as her trio album "Angle of Vision" (482 Music) were both long listed for GRAMMY awards in 2014. Reason premiered her sound-art sculpture, UnHeard, at CEI Artworks in 2016. Additionally, her sound-sculpture Folded Subjects: Olive Rose (2017) was part of the "Still Listening" exhibit dedicated to the life and work of Pauline Oliveros (McGill University/ICASP). Reason is part of the Re.Soundings trio (featuring Catherine Lee, oboe and John Savage, flute) which specializes in exploring works by living composers. The trio recently recorded Nonaah by Roscoe Mitchell. Reason is the founder and artistic director of Between the Cracks Forum: music, sound & interactivity (2008-present); a cross-disciplinary initiative designed to foster contemporary and creative music performance and The Red Room Series.

Research and performance interests include: 20 & 21st century music practices; gender and music; post 1945 jazz; hip hop, sound ecology and sonic studies; film, global musics, video and popular music. Her research is available at: Jazz studies On-line: Columbia University, Wesleyan University Press, Musicworks, and 20th Century Music. Reviews about her music appear in Downbeat, Keyboard Magazine, Jazziz, Coda, Cadence, Musicworks and All About Jazz.

Reason studied piano with Boaz Sharon, Julie Stienberg and Aleck Karis; composition & improvisation with Alcides Lanza, John Rea, Pauline Oliveros, Alvin Curran, Anthony Davis, Chaya Czernowin and George. E. Lewis. Additionally, she studied critical and integrative musicology with Jann Pasler and George E. Lewis. 

As a performer, she has toured and appeared at Frau Musica Nova, Banff Center for the Arts, The Stone, Stanford University, San Francisco Jazz Festival, Spring Reverb, and Is that Jazz? Festival, ICASP, Guelph Jazz Festival, Western Front, and Improvisation Summit of Portland, as well as performed in Canada and Europe.

Reason holds a Bachelor of Music from McGill University; a Master's in Composition from Mills College, and a Ph.D. in Critical Studies/Experimental Practices (now called Integrative Studies) from the University of California San Diego. She was the Founder and Director of Popular Music Studies at Oregon State University from 2011-2015. She is currently the Coordinator of Contemporary Music and Research at Oregon State University and is affiliate faculty for the MAIS graduate program at OSU.

Currents performed by Dr. Chris Chapman and the OSU wind ensemble:

Affiliated with: 
Music Department
Courses Taught: 

OSU offers an online minor in Popular Music.  I teach both on campus and through E-campus.

I am currently developing a new Contemporary Music Studies Program for Ecampus and SAC.

MUS 102: Ap II/ Hip Hop:Theory and Practice

MUS 102: Ap II/ Film Music

MUS 103: The Beatles

MUS 108: Music Cultures of the World

MUS 177: Group Piano

MUS 326: History of Western Music: 20-21st Century

MUS 402: Independent Study

MUS 410: Internship

MUS 442: Genre Studies: Video, MTV, and American Culture

MUS 336: Women and Music 

MUS 399: Sound Art and Practice

MUS 443: Theory and Composition Studies: Soundtracks and Songwriting

MUS 451: Introduction to Art Entrepreneurship

MUS 501: R&S/Res Meth Contemp Interdisc

MUS 543: Theory & Comp Studies

Research/Career Interests: 

Publications (Recent)

Reason, Dana &  Carrie Leigh Paige.   “Playing Like A Girl” New Music Box, Online, July 2018

Reason, Dana. “Folded Subjects: Olive Rose, a modular sound sculpture composition.”  Still Listening: Pauline Oliveros Commemoration, 2017. Still Listening, a collection of 85 invited scores commemorating the life of Pauline Oliveros, is now part of a traveling exhibit from the Marvin Duchow Music Library at McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada.


Reason, Dana. “Dialogues Within” essay for Past Piano Present | Live at Western Front 1985-2015, Anthony Davis, Paul Plimley, Al Neil, John Kameel Farah.  The Western Front New Music, Archival Project, Vancouver, BC, Canada, 2016.


“Interview with Dawn of Midi.” vs. Interpretation: An Anthology on Improvisation, Vol. 1. ed. David Rothenberg, Agosto Foundation, Prague, Czech Republic, 2015.

“Interview with George E. Lewis.” vs. Interpretation: An Anthology on Improvisation, Vol. 1. ed. David Rothenberg. Agosto Foundation, Prague, Czech Republic, 2015. 

Reason, Dana. “Listening From The Inside Out: Pauline Oliveros and Deep Listening.”  Anthology of Essays on Deep Listening, edited by Monique Buzzarte and Tom Bickley, 97 ­ 112. Kingston, NY: Deep Listening Publications, 2012.



Proceedings and Conference Presentations: 

Presentations at Professional Conferences or Meetings


2018     Co-Presenter with Allison Johnson. “Engaging Creativity in Online Courses” Ecampus Forum, CMH2M, May 1, 2018


2014     Host. “Sounding the Future” (workshop/performance – other stories), with Dong­Won Kim, Matt Brubeck, Paul Cram, Gary Diggins, and Ben Grossman. Guelph Jazz Festival Colloquium, International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada.


2013     “Battle of Agency in the AACM and Hip Hop.” Paper presented at the June 19, 2013 meeting of the Berlin Improvisation Research Group, Berlin, Germany.


2012     “Battles of Agency in Hip Hop and Improvised Music.” Paper presented at the Guelph Jazz Festival Colloquium, International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON, Canada.


2011     Performance/Lecture. “A Dialogic Performance: Clara Schumann, Mamie Smith and Contemporary Composition.” Feminist Theory and Music Conference (FTM 11), Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, School of Music, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ.