Dr. Lisa Rainsong’s musical life integrates education, composition, vocal performance and natural history. She was appointed to the CIM music theory faculty in 2000 and teaches undergraduate and graduate theory courses. She also is coordinator of the Doctor of Musical Arts program.

Rainsong holds a DMA in composition from the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she studied with Margaret Brouwer. She is particularly interested in writing for solo voice, vocal ensembles and mixed chamber ensembles of voices and instruments, and her vocal music includes numerous pieces that are settings of her own texts. A soprano as well as a composer, Rainsong performs medieval, Renaissance and baroque music.

Rainsong is also a professional naturalist who specializes in the music of Earth’s first musicians: bird song, insect song, and the songs of amphibians. She presents conference programs, naturalist training workshops and educational park district programs across the state and conducts field recording and research. She earned a Naturalist Certificate from the Cleveland Museum of Natural History in 2008.


  • BM and MM in composition, Cleveland State University; studied with Bain Murray, Edwin London and Howie Smith
  • DMA in composition, Cleveland Institute of Music; studied with Margaret Brouwer

Teaching Experience

  • Cleveland Institute of Music (2000–present)
    • Teaches undergraduate and graduate theory courses
    • Coordinates the Doctor of Musical Arts program