James P. Cassaro

  • Professor
  • Head, Theodore M. Finney Music Library


Musicology, Bibliography, Music of the French Baroque, Opera.


I am a librarian–musicologist whose main area of research focuses on, but is not limited to, seventeenth-century French music, in particular Jean Baptiste Lully’s ballet de cour. My critical edition of Lully’s Ballet des Saisons is in the composer’s collected works series published by Georg Olms. I am also head of the Theodore M. Finney Music Library at the University of Pittsburgh, and hold a secondary appointment as professor and graduate faculty in the Music Department at Pitt. Other areas of research include music bibliography, opera of the 18th and 19th centuries, and music and narrative theory. I have published several other monographs, including Music, Libraries, and the Academy: Essays in Honor of Lenore Coral (A-R Editions, 2007); Gaetano Donizetti: A Research and Information Guide, 2nd ed. (Routledge, 2009); as well as articles in NotesFontes Artis Musicae, Quellenstudien zu Lully, and in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd ed., and the 2nd ed. of the New Grove Dictionary of American Music. I am currently editor-in-chief of Fontes Artis Musicae, the journal of the International Association of Music Libraries (IAML), and was editor-in-chief of Notes, the quarterly journal of the Music Library Association (2004-2010). I am currently active in the Music Library Association, the International Association of Music Libraries (IAML), and the American Musicological Society.

Recent Courses

  • Principles of Research and Music Bibliography
  • Music and Narrative Theory
  • Baroque Perspectives: Music, Culture and Society in Early Modern France, 1650-1750
  • Operatic Innovations: Experimentation and Influence in Late 18th- and Early 19th-Century Opera
  • Music and Queer Identity
  • The Sublime, the Grotesque, and the Exotic in Music
  • Social Themes in the American Musical
  • Music and Science Fiction

Selected Publications

Review of Pierre Robert. Motets pour la Chapelle du roy. Vol. 1. Édition d’Andrée Dagenais avec la collaboration de Thomas LeConte. (Patrimonie musical français.) Versailles: Centre de musique baroque, 2019, Revue du musicology 106, no. 2 (2020): 571-573.

“Gaetano Donizetti.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Music. Ed. Bruce Gustafson. New York: Oxfor University Press, 2018. 15,206 words

Review of Karen Henson, Opera Acts: Singers and Performance in the Late Nineteenth Century (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), Notes 74, no. 1 (September 2017): 76–78.

Review of Francesco Cavalli, La Calisto, ed. Álvaro Torrente (Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2012) and Artemisia, ed. Hendrik Schulze (Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2013), Notes 71, no. 4 (June 2015): 745–749.

"Sondheim, Stephen (1930–)." In Music in American Life: An Encyclopedia of the Songs, Styles, Stars, and Stories That Shaped Our Culture. Edited by Jacqueline Edmondson. Santa Barbara, CA: Greenwood, 2013, 1087-88.

 “Resources for Finding a Job,” Professional Development Column, Mosaic: Journal of Music Research 2 (August 2012): online at http://mosaicjournal.org/index.php/mosaic/article/view/43/41.

“Seductora, Víctima i Titella: Una Introduccío a L’Anna Bolena de Donizetti” (Seductress, Victim, Pawn: An Introduction to Donizetti’s Anna Bolena), Temporada d’Òpera 2010-2011 (Barcelona: Gran Teatro del Liceu, 2010), 80-82 (277-278 in English).

Gaetano Donizetti: A Research and Information Guide. 2nd ed. New York: Routledge, 2009.

Music, Libraries, and the Academy: Essays in Honor of Lenore Coral, ed. James P. Cassaro. Middleton, WI: A-R Editions, 2007.

"Sondheim, Stephen." In Lgbt: Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History in America. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons; Thomson Gale, 2004.

Lully, Jean Baptiste. Ballet des Saisons: édition de James P. Cassaro. Œuvres complètes. Série I, Ballets et mascarades, v. 6. Hi ldesheim: G. Olms, 2001.

'Lully's Ballet des Saisons: Manuscript Sources." In Quellenstudien zu Jean-Baptiste Lully. Hildesheim: G. Olms, 1999: 159-174.

"Other Musical Chadwicks: John M. and George M. of Central New York," Notes 54/2 (Dec. 1997): 371-418.

Space Utilization in Music Libraries. MLA technical reports, no. 20. Canton, MA: Music Library Association, 1991.

Planning and Caring for Library Audio Facilities. MLA technical reports, no.17. Canton, MA: Music Library Association, 1989.

Papers Read

“Resurrecting Galuppi: Toward a Critical Edition of Li tre amanti ridicoli,” International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres, Kraków, Poland, July 18, 2019.

"Haydn in Latrobe: Providing Context to Manuscripts Held at St. Vincent College," Haydn Society of America Conference, Vancouver, BC, November 4, 2016.

"From 'Angels Dancing on a Pin' to 'Cavalcade of Cubes': The Florencio Asenjo Collection at the University of Pittsburgh," Atlantic Chapter, Music Library Association, College of William and Mary, October 22, 2016.

“Highborn in Low Places: Mozart’s La finta giardiniera in Cultural Context,” Mozart Summer Camp, Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, Phipps Conservatory, July 18, 2013.

“Mozart’s Magic Flute, the Enlightenment and Freemasonry,” Mozart Summer Camp, Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, Hillman Center for the Performing Arts, Shadyside Academy, July 12, 2012.

“’Ah, sì, il tempo che mai non s’arresta’: Real vs. Frozen Time in Verdi’s Operatic Ensembles,” American Association for Italian Studies, 31st annual conference, Pittsburgh, PA, April 8, 2011.

“Marc-Antoine Charpentier & the Messe des morts (1695),” Adult Forum, Calvary Episcopal Church, Pittsburgh, PA, October 31, 2010.

“Haydn in Latrobe: The Musical Legacy of Boniface Wimmer (1809-1887),” MLA Atlantic Chapter Meeting, American University, October 10, 2010. Revised version given at IAML Conference, Dublin, Ireland, July 27, 2011.

"Notes as a Collection Development Resource for Music," Music Library Association, Memphis, Tennessee, February 25, 2006.

"The One-Room Schoolhouse: Approaches to Space Utilization Issues in the Theodore M. Finney Music Library, University of Pittsburgh." Music Library Association, Arlington, Va., February 12, 2004.

"A Forgotten Voice Remembered: Frank Lionel Curtis and the American Salon Piano Tradition." Music Department Colloquium Series, University of Pittsburgh, April 28, 2000.

"From The German Turner Ball to The Venerable and Weird Spirit of the Mountain: Regional Nineteenth-Century Composers." Colloquium Series, Cornell University, Music Dept., April 29, 1996.

"Reflections in a Pool: Lully's Ballet des Saisons and the Court of Louis XIV." Society for Seventeenth-Century Music, Washington University, St. Louis, April 23, 1993 & the American Musicological Society, Montréal, November 1993.


Editor, Fontes Artis Musicae, journal of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres (IAML), 2015-

Chair, Membership & Professional Development Committee, American Musicological Society, 2012–15

AMS Council, 2011–13

Chair, Committee on Career-Related Issues, American Musicological Society, 2009–12

Development Officer, Music Library Association, 2009–12

RILM Commission mixte (President, 2012–16; Vice-President, 2008–12)

Vice-President, International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres, 2004–10.

Editor, Notes, quarterly journal of the Music Library Association, 2004–10.

President, Music Library Association, 2001–03

Current Projects

Critical edition of Baldassare Galuppi’s Li tre amanti ridicoli (1761).

Education & Training

  • MA, Musicology, Cornell University, 1993
  • MLS, SUNY at Buffalo, 1980

Faculty Groupings

Core Faculty

Main Department Affliliation


Other Department Positions

Head, Theodore M. Finney Music Library