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UR Humanities Project: Michael Anderson, ESM faculty

Event Details
  • Location:
    Eastman East Wing Hatch Recital Hall
  • Date:
    Thursday, October 26, 2017
  • Time:
    9:00 AM to 12:30 PM
Event Description


Michael Alan Anderson specializes in a wide range of issues related to sacred music from the fourteenth through the sixteenth century, with emphasis on the saints and lay devotion. He is the author of the book St. Anne in Renaissance Music: Devotion and Politics (Cambridge University Press, 2014). Anderson is a two-time winner of ASCAP’s Deems Taylor Award for outstanding writing about music, for articles published in 2011 (Early Music History) and in 2013 (Journal of the American Musicological Society). He is also the 2012 winner of the Noah Greenberg Award, given by the American Musicological Society for outstanding contributions to historical performance practices. In 2013, he received the University of Rochester’s Provost Multidisciplinary Award, which involved producing first recordings of medieval music supplied to the newly-installed medieval gallery at the Memorial Art Gallery. A Humanities Project grant, also from the University of Rochester, allowed for a symposium on machine-reading and crowd-sourced indices of medieval music manuscripts. Other academic awards include the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Stipend, the Alvin H. Johnson American Musicological Society 50 Dissertation-Year Fellowship, the Grace Frank Grant (Medieval Academy of America), the Whiting Foundation Fellowship (University of Chicago), and several travel and research grants.

Besides Early Music History and JAMS, Anderson’s articles have appeared in the journals Early Music, Plainsong and Medieval Music, and Studi musicali. He is also the author of The Singing Irish: A History of the Notre Dame Glee Club (University of Notre Dame Press, 2015), which chronicles the history of one of the oldest American choruses on the occasion of its centennial. As managing editor of The Eastman Case Studies series through the school’s Institute for Music Leadership, he oversees the publication of essays examining business administration issues in musical arts organizations across the country. He further serves on the editorial board of two textbooks published by W.W. Norton (The History of Western Music, ed. Burkholder and Concise History of Western Music, ed. Hanning). Since 2010, he has also sat on the editorial board of the American Choral Review, the semiannual journal of the organization Chorus America. Anderson has presented papers nationally and internationally at major conferences both inside and outside his primary field.

Still an active performer, Anderson has served as Artistic Director of Schola Antiqua since 2008, following the retirement of medievalist Calvin M. Bower, with whom he co-founded the organization in 2000. Schola Antiqua is a Chicago-based professional vocal ensemble dedicated to the performance of music before 1600. The group currently serves as artists in residence at the Lumen Christi Institute. Anderson’s work with Schola Antiqua earned him Chorus America’s 2016 Louis Botto Award for Innovative Action and Entrepreneurial Zeal. The group’s albums have been released on the NAXOS and Discantus labels, and the ensemble has recorded music for academic publications, including Margot Fassler’s Music in the Medieval West (W.W. Norton, 2014). Schola Antiqua’s music from commercial albums has aired on the nationally syndicated broadcasts of With Heart and Voice, Millennium of Music, and Harmonia and has been widely reviewed. Anderson has spearheaded collaborations with major art and library exhibitions including The Met Cloisters, the Morgan Library & Museum, The Newberry Library, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

As a choral conductor, Anderson has further served as the Assistant Director of the Rockefeller Memorial Chapel Choir (2001-05) and as a guest conductor of the Notre Dame Glee Club. Meantime as a singer, he performed for three seasons with the Chicago Symphony Chorus, under the batons of Barenboim, Boulez, Penderecki, Mehta, Eschenbach, Rostropovich, and others in venues from Orchestra Hall and the Ravinia Festival in Chicago to Carnegie Hall and the Berlin Philharmonie. He has also received invitations to appear with the Boston Early Music Festival chamber ensemble, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, Seraphic Fire, Voices (Rochester), and the Schola Cantorum of Christ Church (Rochester).

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