PhD, Critical Studies & Experimental Practices in Music, University of California-San Diego;
MA, Music, University of California-San Diego;
BA, Music, Eastman School of Music/University of Rochester
Associate Professor, The ArtsProfile:
As a musician I strive to balance the pleasures of making music with the rigors of thinking about it (or do I mean the pleasures of thinking about it and the rigors of making it?). The piano is my instrument but I enjoy many different kinds of music, especially because they can all lead to endless discoveries about the world and about one’s self. As an undergraduate I studied classical piano at the Eastman School of Music, in Vienna and in Budapest at the Liszt Academy. Later I studied philosophy and religion in graduate school, but returned to music to explore contemporary and avant-garde performance and composition for my PhD at the University of California.
Before joining the Lang College faculty in 2003, I taught at the University of South Carolina School of Music and then at Whitman College, a liberal arts college in Washington State. Both those teaching experiences positively shaped my approach to pedagogy and curriculum development at Lang. At South Carolina my students were mostly music majors in instrumental and vocal performance, while at Whitman I taught in the Core Curriculum, an overview of the great texts of Antiquity and Modernity for first-year students of widely-varied academic goals. My own undergraduate career took me from the narrow focus of a music conservatory curriculum to a broader liberal arts education at the University of Rochester while I still continued my studies and performing at Eastman. I'm a strong advocate for a well-rounded education that focuses on the arts as well as their place in the larger context of history and culture. That's why arriving at Lang College to teach in the "Arts in Context" program was exactly what I always wanted to do.
My scholarly work focuses on the cultural meanings of musical performance in relation to various social ideologies and forms of technology. One long-term project I've now completed explores the controversial politics and poetics of the Eurovision Song Contest, the largest and longest-running annual televised competition for popular music in the world. My two most recent publications discuss how the piano keyboard and its "language of touch" influenced new communication technologies in the early nineteenth century, and how Robert Schumann's piano music functions melodramatically in films and literature. I'm currently completing a wide-ranging interdisciplinary research project titled Dreams of Love: Playing the Romantic Pianist. It’s about the image and role of the concert pianist as mediated through technology and popular culture mythologies. As soon as this book is finished I'll start practicing again!
In Fall 2012 and Spring 2013 I will be on sabbatical in Berlin and Vienna for my next research project, “Visual Music: Towards a Theory of Perceptual Practices.” I believe that sight, not just sound, informs musical experience ever more significantly since the early twentieth century. I will research the work of three leading theorists of synaesthesia active in Austria and Germany in the 1920s: Oskar Rainer, Georg Anschütz, and Albert Wellek. I’ll also explore various creative applications of their theories by considering modes of sensory perception, or “perceptual practices,” in relation to visual and musical creativity. This research could provide new perspectives on our current fascination with synaesthesia and intermedia in the arts some eight decades after their pioneering work.
Spring 2010 Courses
Previous Courses Taught
- Fundamentals in Western Music
- Arts in New York City
- Musical Borrowing
- History and Culture of Piano
- Music in Film
- Hearing Art, Seeing Music
- Queer Culture
- "Piano, Telegraph, Typewriter: Listening to the Language of Touch," in Media, Technology and Literature in the Nineteenth Century (Ashgate Press), 2011.
- "Schumann's Melodramatic Afterlife," in Rethinking Schumann (Oxford University Press), 2010
- Interview about the Eurovision Song Contest on "The Current" with host Anna Maria Tremonti, CBC Radio (12 March 2009), accessible at <http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/2009/200903/20090312.html>
- Co-editor of A Song for Europe: Popular Music and Politics in the Eurovision Song Contest (Ashgate Publishing), 2007
- “Give Them a Hand: Playback Pianists and the Crisis of Disembodiment,” Society for Cinema and Media Studies conference, 2003
- “Transcription, Transgression, and the (Pro)Creative Urge,” in Queer Episodes in Music and Modern Identity (University of Illinois Press), 2002
- “Concerto con amore: ‘Relationship’ and the Soundtrack Piano Concerto,” in ECHO: An Online Journal (vol. 2, no. 1), 2000
- “Hollywood’s Embattled Icon” in Piano Roles: 300 Years of Life with the Piano (Yale University Press), 2000
Eugene Lang College, The New School for Liberal Arts
65 West 11th Street, Room 051
New York, NY 10011
Mon. & Weds 12-2p & by appointmentPhone Number/Extension:
212-229-5100 x2134Email:firstname.lastname@example.orgResearch Interests:
- Critical studies in music
- History and culture of the piano and the Romantic pianist
- Music, gender and sexuality
- Film music, music and media
Awards and Honors:
- American Musicological Society
- 2013, Fulbright Visiting Professor at the University of Vienna
- 2012, German Chancellor Scholarship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation
- 2003, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipend
- 2000, AMS 50 Fellowship from the American Musicological Society
- 1999, German Chancellor Scholarship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation