Visiting Scholar Series

Each semester the Department of Music presents visiting scholars who are leaders in their fields. All Visiting Scholar Lectures are free to the public. For more information call 412-624-4125 or e-mail concerts@pitt.edu.

Upcoming Visiting Scholars

Shana Redmond on “Antiphonal Life: The Returns of Paul Robeson”
Wednesday, February 19, 6 p.m.
Frick Fine Arts Building, Auditorium, Free

In “Antiphonal Life: The Returns of Paul Robeson,” Redmond provides an experimental cartography of Paul Robeson’s afterlife. Tracing his sound and its materialization in the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries, she establishes the global scope of his musical practice as well as the imagination of those who call him back.

Shana L. Redmond is the author of Everything Man: The Form and Function of Paul Robeson (Duke UP, 2020) and Anthem: Social Movements and the Sound of Solidarity in the African Diaspora (NYU Press, 2014). A public facing scholar, her recent publications include critical profiles for NPR and Women Who Rock (2018), as well as the liner notes for the “Us” soundtrack (2019). She is Professor of Musicology and African American Studies at UCLA.

Robin James on “‘Bad Guy,’ ‘High Hopes,’ and Chill Moods:
post-probabilist resilience in today’s pop music”
Tuesday, November 19, 7 p.m.
Frick Fine Arts Building, Auditorium

Abstract: Building on my work in Resilience & Melancholy, I discuss how post-probabilist neoliberalisms—neoliberalisms that depart from the Gaussian, probabilist neoliberalisms I studied in the book—impact contemporary popular music in the US. Using Billie Eilish’s “Bad Guy,” Panic! At the Disco’s “High Hopes,” and Spotify’s “chill” playlists as case studies, I’ll show how the pop music industry and pop aesthetics are adapting to neoliberalism’s transformation of market value into capacity or resilience. I will also show that, in this context, inequality becomes a measure not of abnormality, but of dis/orientation, and explain how this impacts both performances of gender, race, and sexuality, and the use of pop music to regulate and manage mood or orientation for maximum capacity-building. Find out more…

Tomei Hahn: When nothing makes sense in performance and research
Monday, October 7, 6 p.m.
Frick Fine Arts Auditorium

Tomie invites you to listen to surreal stories of performance and research. In this presentation she examines silence and the absence of sensory information. Noticing holes—or noticing “nothing”—is tricky. One needs to be culturally sensitive to inferences, pauses, as well as linkages that appear and then disappear. Awareness of transmission, masking, or entropic data transmission involves challenging multisensory consciousness—or even the boundaries of our perceptual bandwidth.
Find out more…

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