Master Class with Dennis McCarthy

12 August 2016

Be sure to join us for our next Master Class with Arranger/Composer Dennis McCarthy on August 20, 2016! Dennis received his first major break when he began to work for country/pop star, Glen Campbell. As Glen’s career exploded to international success, Dennis traveled with him as his musical conductor, and pianist/arranger, a position that lasted nine years and kept him on the road for up to 42 weeks per year.


Valley College
(Music Room)
5800 Fulton, Van Nuys, CA


$25 Members & Students / $40 Non-Members

In 1969, Dennis served as musical coordinator, working side-by-side with musical director Marty Paich, on the Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour, which spanned four years. Thanks in large part to Marty and the extraordinary musicians that worked on that show every week, Dennis became interested in composing, and became a scoring assistant to legendary composer, Alex North.

In the 1980s, variety shows were still a staple of television, and so Dennis became musical director for another country star, Barbara Mandrel. The Barbara Mandrel Show, initially a six-episode summer replacement, continued for three years. During this period Dennis also performed in concert with his father’s favorite singer, Burl Ives, and was musical director for numerous other variety shows including: People’s Choice, On Stage America, The Monte Carlo Show, Ronnie Millsap, plus several Gary Smith & Dwight Hemion specials.

Dennis’ first television scoring job was for the Dukes of Hazzard spin-off, Enos, in 1981. Next came V: The Final Battle, episodes of the new incarnation of The Twilight Zone, Dynasty, Love Boat, Hotel, The Colby’s, Get Real, Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Houston Knights, Birdland, and seven seasons of MacGyver, amongst others. In 1987, McCarthy received his favorite, and longest running scoring assignment when he became a regular composer on Star Trek, The Next Generation.

He has since contributed music to every subsequent Star Trek series, including Deep Space 9, Voyager and Enterprise, in addition to scoring Star Trek: Generations in 1994. In addition to McCarthy’s numerous feature films and made-for-TV movie credits, he has also enjoyed working in theatre, composing the music for numerous productions (including The Italian Straw Hat with playwright John Strand) for the South Coast Repertory in Costa Mesa, CA. He currently teaches a film course, titled “Communicating with a Composer” at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena.

Dennis is a seven-time Emmy nominee, and won the award in 1993 for his theme to Deep Space Nine, and again in 1996 for his music for the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Unification, Part 1.” In 2010 he was honored with the ASCAP Golden Note Lifetime Achievement award.

The master class will be moderated by orchestrator/arranger Liz Finch.

Liz has worked as a copyist for many years in both recording and live performance, in the studio music libraries and independent music preparation offices, as well as independently for many high -profile arrangers and composers. She was sometimes known as “the girl” at a time when there were very few women in the profession. The move to more digital music production, led to work as an orchestrator for film composers Hans Zimmer, John Powell, and Steve Jablonsky, as well as other composers in live TV and commercials.

Join us August 20th for the opportunity to learn from this creative award winning composer. Whether you’re a Star Trek fan, a fan of variety shows, episodic TV, or just great music — this one’s for you!

Upcoming Events

ASMAC Jazz Orchestra Hang with Geoff Stradling

ASMAC Jazz Orchestra Hang with Geoff Stradling

Geoff Stradling will share about his process & new jazz orchestra album “Nimble Digits” with his StradBand.Read More »
ASMAC Video Game Scoring—Forza Motorsport w/Kaveh Cohen & Michael Nielsen

ASMAC Video Game Scoring—Forza Motorsport w/Kaveh Cohen & Michael Nielsen

Composers Kaveh Cohen & Michael Nielsen drive us through creating music for the Forza Motorsport franchise. Moderated by Joachim Horsley.Read More »