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Ken Corday

Affiliation: UCSC alumnus: Porter College, Aesthetic Studies, Bachelor of Arts, 1975


Kenneth Robert Corday is an American television soap opera producer and music composer. He is the son of Ted Corday and Betty Corday, the co-creators of Days of our Lives. Corday has been nominated for 16 Daytime Emmys and won the Daytime Emmy Award for Music Direction and Composition For a Drama Series in 1990 and 1997, and also was nominated in the same category in 2006 and 2007. He was nominated for the Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Daytime Drama Series in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2009 and 2012. He won the 2007 Film & TV Music Award for Best Score for a Television Daytime Drama for his work on the series. In 2017 he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Corday graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Aesthetic Studies from UC Santa Cruz in 1975 and with a Master's Degree in Music Composition from San Jose State University.


In Conversation with Ken Corday

Greatest influences that shaped your career?
My father, a violinist and a lover of classical music and jazz, was the first to instill my appreciation for all music. Randy Masters, who was my professor and mentor at UCSC, taught me the aesthetics of jazz improvisation and Afro Cuban music. Lou Harrison, who was my mentor in Graduate Studies in music composition at San Jose State University, taught me an appreciation of the influence of eastern music and orchestration in the modern symphonic repertoire.

Passions, joys, and causes that drive you?
I am still highly driven by my passion and love of music in all forms and the joy that it brings me in composing both for television and the concert hall. 

The relevance and role of arts education in today’s world?
Arts education in the academic world today is vitally important in order to continue the flow and legacy of all that is aesthetic. It is also important for those who have been given an education in the arts to give back and support those who have made it possible. 

What’s exciting to you about the vision and mission of UCSC’s Arts Division? 
I am excited by its cutting-edge attention to what makes today’s academic world, in all of its diversity, an aesthetic experience. It is my desire to continue to support UCSC’s Arts Division in as many ways as I possibly can – as an alumnus, a professional composer, and a benefactor.