Faculty & Staff

Tom Mulherin

Jazz and Commercial Piano

Graduate Teaching Assistant

  • Jazz and Commercial Piano


  • B.A., University of Virginia
  • M.A., University of Notre Dame
  • Ph.D., University of Notre Dame

Raised on Cape Cod, Tom Mulherin has studied piano since elementary school, developing an interest in jazz and popular piano during middle school. Tom went on to study music and philosophy at the University of Virginia, where he received a BA with Highest Distinction. At UVA, Tom studied piano with Bob Hallahan and also performed with the UVA Jazz Ensemble under the direction of John D’earth. With John’s encouragement, Tom began composing; his output includes three charts for big band and a host of tunes and arrangements for smaller groups.

After completing his undergraduate education, Tom went on to pursue a Ph.D. in philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. His dissertation (“The Antimony of Musical Meaning”) drew upon historical and contemporary German Philosophy, musicology, and contemporary analytic philosophy of music to argue that discussions of musical meaning (pro and con) rested upon false assumptions about the linguistic nature of meaning. Since receiving his Ph.D., Tom has taught philosophy at Georgetown University and published essays on Kant, E. T. A. Hoffman, and other topics in The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism and elsewhere.

Although Tom continued to perform during his doctoral studies, he didn’t resume the formal study of music until 2015, when he began working with Wade Beach. In 2017, he took a further step and enrolled at George Mason, where he is pursuing an M.M. in Jazz Studies and teaching group classes in jazz and commerical piano. Tom maintains an active performance schedule in D.C. and Northern Virginia, and has been privileged to share the stage with John D’earth, Anthony Wilson, Madeleine Peyroux, and others.


Contact Mr. Mulherin at tmulheri@gmu.edu