Musicology Across Boundaries Conference

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The Fred Fox School of Music is hosting its 2017 Graduate Student Music Conference, “Musicology Across Boundaries,” on Feb. 24 and 25. The conference, organized by a committee of eight graduate students and their adviser, will feature a keynote address, workshop and 14 presentations on musicology and related scholarship.

This is the School of Music’s second graduate student conference using funds from the Daveen Fox Endowed Chair for Music Studies. 

The idea for this year’s conference was to incorporate all areas of scholarship and focus on innovation and cross-disciplinary expansion, according to Kathy Acosta Zavala, a Ph.D. candidate in musicology and the chair of the conference’s planning committee 

Dr. Tamara Levitz from the University of California, Los Angeles, will give the keynote address, titled “Academic Musicologists as Civil Rights Activists: Facing a Trump Presidency.” 

Acosta Zavala said the keynote address will include a discussion of effective activism in musicology and a history of musicology in activism and scholarship. 

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In addition to the focus on cross-disciplinary expansion, the title of the conference also plays off of the topic of Levitz’s keynote address.

Benjamín Carvajal | Courtesy

“[The title] was also reflective of what we knew she was going to be bringing to the table, which is actually not only innovative but so, so important for us, especially musicians, all kinds of artists in general,” Acosta Zavala said. “Where do we fit in in the new political environment and what can we do to contribute?”

Levitz will also hold a workshop at the conference titled “‘The Role of the Public Intellectual’: A Critical Workshop on Public Musicology.” The workshop is about how to effectively bring together  scholarship and activism.

“She’s just such an amazing scholar and so open to students,” Acosta Zavala said of Levitz.

While the workshop is open only to registered conference participants, anyone can attend the other presentations, which are divided into five panels by topic. The presentations range from covering the Americas to discussing music and technology. 

“It’s really immersing the current scholarship and innovation in our own university and giving all the students here the opportunity to see this research first hand,” Acosta Zavala said.

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The conference will talk about scholarship that ties in the contextual upbringing of the music in addition to the music itself.

Ingvi Kallen | Courtesy

“I think the main thing that we want the students coming to this conference and the community to realize is that we are activists in our own way,” Acosta Zavala said. 

The first panel will start at 10 a.m. on Friday, Feb. 24, in Room 146 in the Fred Fox School of Music. Students from the UA Bolton Guitar Studies Program will perform a concert at 4 p.m. in Holsclaw Hall before the keynote address at 4:30 p.m. Panels four and five will start at 9:40 a.m. and 3 p.m., respectively, on Saturday, Feb. 25, in Room 146. The workshop will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday in Room 146. The conference is open to the public with free admission.


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