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In this Issue:
1. Annual GRIME Meeting
1.1 Business Meeting
1.2 Discussion topic: Integrating women-in-music & gender-in-music into the pre-university
1.3 Feminist Theory and Music 4
2. Upcoming Conferences
2.1 Music, Gender and Education One Day Conference, “Whose Music?: Gender bias in music
from school to professional life”
2.2 Philosophy of Music Education, International Symposium III
2.3 International Congress on Women in Music
2.4 Music, Education and Gender Conference
2.5 Panel and Open Discussion on Mentoring
3. Member Articles
3.1 Philosophical Equations of a Feminist Music Student, Julie Bannerman
3.2 Feminism and Music Education: Why Bother?, Patti O’Toole
4. Conference Reviews
1997 International Association of Jazz Educators Annual Conference, Kimberly McCord
5. Concert Reviews
A Review of the World Premiere of “Fertility Rites,” Charlene Morton
6. GRIME Members Music
Carol Ann Weaver
7. GRIME Members Research
7.1 Teachable Moments in the Music Education Classroom: Occasions for Self-Study and
Collaborative Professional Development, Dr. Mary Hookey and Dr. Eileen Winter
7.2 Manufacturing distances: Linking Contemplation, Creativity and Change in the Classroom,
Dr. Mary Hookey
8. Article: The first Music SIG program at AERA
9.1 New Special Topics Course Offering
9.2 New Book Publication Announcement
10. GRIME Newsletter
GRIME Meeting, Saturday, 6 June, 6:30-8 pm, Agenda
- report on membership/finances
- request to raise membership to $6
- report re: SIG status with MENC
- other business 1.2 Discussion topic: Integrating women-in-music & gender-in-music into the pre-university classroomHow do university professors make connections with practising music teachers to help them integrate these issues (gender, women, our feminist research) within the curriculum? How do we work with private teachers & school music teachers, especially when materials are difficult to access or may be inapporpriate for younger ages. What do representations of teaching/learning music in popular culture (e.g., Mr. Holland’s Opus) mean in terms of feminist pedagogy? What new feminist teaching materials or new feminist university programs are available? What ideas do GRIMErs have?
Reading something from the following list related to issues of feminist pedagogies/ theories in music education might be helpful for preparation for this GRIME discusson at FTM4:
a. CMS Symposium, Vol 36, 1996. Barbara Coeyman, Applications of Feminist Pedagogy to the College Music Major Curriculum: An Introduction to the Issues, pp. 73-90.
b. Ch.5 Music lessons, in Beethoven’s Kiss, Kevin Kopelson, Stanford University Press 1996.
c. Ch.9, Shut up & dance: Youth culture & changing modes of femininity, in Postmodernism & Popular Culture, Angela McRobbie, Routledge, 1994.
d. Philosophy of Music Education Review, Fall 1994 feminist theory theme issue.
e. Teaching to Transgress, bell hooks, Routledge, 1994
f. Ch.5 The canon in practice, in Gender & the Musical Canon, Marcia Citron, Cambridge 1993.
A conference to be held on the grounds of the University of Virginia, with sessions beginning 1 PM Thursday, June 5 and continuing through noon, Sunday June 8, 1997.
The conference will feature over 100 scholarly papers, performances and presentations exploring issues of gender, race, ethnicity, class and sexuality in musics from a wide range of cultural settings. For a complete listing of the program and abstracts, available in mid-May, visit our web page at http://www.virginia.edu/~music/ftm4.html.
Plenary events will include:
“Remembering Ruth Crawford Seeger” presentations by Mike Seeger and Judith Tick. Thursday 4:30 PM;
A concert of electronic music by women composers including music by Insook Choi, Anne LeBaron, Annea Lockwood, Alicyn Warren, and Frances White. Martin Goldray, piano. Thursday 8:30 PM;
Open rehearsal and premiere performance of a choral work by Maura Bosch commissioned for this conference, conducted by Michele Edwards. Friday 12:45 – 1:45 PM;
“Tough Women” a lecture-recital by soprano Gwendolyn Lytle including songs by Margaret Bonds, Libby Larsen and Gwyneth Walker. Friday 4:30 PM;
Concert of recent music by women composers presented by the chamber ensemble Ekko! Friday 8:30 PM;
“Music as Community: Workshop in Central African Polyphony” led by Michelle Kisliuk. Saturday 12:45 – 1:45 PM;
Reception to celebrate two important publications: Judith Tick’s biography Ruth Crawford Seeger: A Composer’s Search for American Music and the first issue of Women and Music, a new scholarly journal. Saturday 4:30 PM;
“Women Composers and Electronic Music” presentations by Insook Choi, Anne LeBaron, Annea Lockwood, Judith Shatin, and Frances White. Saturday 8:30 PM.
See below for registration and housing forms. 90% refund on registration and meals if you cancel by May 30, 50% if you cancel later. We have arranged for housing through the University. Registrants may stay in private rooms at Lambeth Apartments for $25/night, or may share a room for $20/night. Rooms are in suites of two or three bedrooms with shared bathroom and kitchen. Registrants may use the kitchens, but kitchen utensils are not provided. Spaces are available Wednesday through Sunday nights. Reserve one week in advance to guarantee space. Cancellations must be at least one week before arrival for full refund. To cancel call (804) 924-4479. The University requires a key deposit of $80 upon check-in, payable by cash, check, or VISA/Mastercard.
We have also arranged for meals: all meals from Thursday dinner through Sunday lunch will be available in a University dining facility, except for Friday and Saturday lunch, available as box lunches at the Music building. Because of other events in Charlottesville, hotel and restaurant spaces are limited the weekend of the Conference, and we strongly advise registrants to use the housing and meals that we have arranged. Meals should be reserved by paying in advance: $54 to cover all the meals served in the dining hall, and $7 for each of the two box lunches. We recommend that all registrants purchase the $54 meal plan. A limited number of meals in the dining hall will be available on a cash, per-meal basis, but we cannot guarantee availability. Housing is a ten minute walk from the dining hall, and the conference events are a further five minute walk. We will provide local transportation for registrants with special needs.
Transportation to Charlottesville is possible by air or train. We recommend working with a travel agent to explore different options. Charlottesville has a small airport; availability of flights varies and fares may be high. You may wish to consider travelling to Richmond (80 minutes away) or the Washington area airports (Dulles is closest, 2 hours away) and renting a car; the difference in fare may more than offset the rental cost. Amtrak has daily service to Charlottesville’s station.
You may pay by VISA, Mastercard or check (US$ only). Print out this form and return it by mail to: FTM4, Department of Music, University of Virginia, Charlottesville VA 22903. Or you may register by phone or email using credit card: (804) 924-3984 or <email@example.com>.
Registration fee: $90 (after May 22: $100). Those with annual income under $21,000 may choose to register at a lower rate of $60 ($70 after May 22).
(1) Registration fee: ___
Breakfast and dinner and Sunday lunch are available from University dining services; box lunches will be available at the conference site. Meal plan (all meals from dinner Thursday through lunch Sunday, except for lunch on Friday and Saturday) $54 per person
(2) Meal plan: _____
Check the days that you wish to have a box lunch: F __ Sa __
(3) _ Lunches @ $7: ____
for lunches: __meat __vegetarian __dietary restrictions:____________
Volunteers do most of the work for the Conference, and we rely on small grants, registration fees and donations to cover Conference expenses. We welcome donations, either for general operating expenses or to sponsor the reduced registration fee for lower-income participants ($30 reduction per person).
(4) Donation: ____
Total payment (sum of 1 – 4 above):_____
__Check enclosed (US$ only)
Charge my __VISA __Mastercard account
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Institution or place of residence (optional):____________________
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__I will need special assistance with local transportation (attach explanation)
__Please mail me information about driving to Charlottesville
Housing Request for Feminist Theory and Music.
Print out this form and mail it to: University of Virginia, Conference Services, Page-Emmett, Station #1, Charlottesville VA 22904-0003. Or reserve with credit card by calling (804) 924-4479, or emailing complete information to <firstname.lastname@example.org>, or fax the form with credit card information to Conference Services at (804) 924-1027.
Social security #_________________________
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__ Lambeth single room @$25
__ Lambeth double room @$20/person
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28-31 May, 1997, University of California, Los Angeles
Anthony J. Palmer, University of Hawai’i at Manoa and Frank Heuser, University of California, Los Angeles: Co-Chairs
WRITE FOR INFORMATION TO: Anthony J. Palmer, Music Dept., Univ. of Hawai’i at Manoa, 2411 Dole St, Honolulu HI 96822-2318, Fax: (808) 956-9657
The International Alliance for Women in Music is pleased to announce plans for
the next International Congress on Women in Music to take place May 29, 30, 31 and June 1, 1997 at the California Institute of the Arts in Valencia California, north of Los Angeles.
For more information, contact Jeannie Pool, ICWM Coordinator, P.O. Box 8192, La Crescenta, CA 91224-0192, USA, or by e-mail at Compuserve <73201,email@example.com> or by fax at 818-248-8681.
Further information and registration forms from:
Bath College of Higher Education
Newton St. Loe, Bath BA2 9BN
The Committee on the Status of Women and the Committee on Cultural Diversity of the American Musicological Society will co-sponsor a panel and open discussion on mentoring at the national meeting in Phoenix on the evening of either Thursday, Oct. 30 or Friday, Oct. 31. The discussion is intended to address the particular importance of mentoring for women and minorities. Details will be announced in the August issue of the AMS Newsletter.
I am a first year college student beginning the magical curriculum formula that the course book says will give me the tools to become the teacher I want to be: seven credits of music education classes + five and a half credits of individual performance + major ensemble + keyboarding + 25 credits. . . = Teacher. The challenge is how to fit my ideas into the formula, and nurture them at the same time. I expect that in my music education classes as we develop our own philosophies the ultimate goal will be to integrate those beliefs into methods, style, and approach. I already have an idea of what kind of teacher / director I want to be. My personal philosophy grows and changes along with my ideas about music education, but they are fundamentally linked, as I was introduced to essentials of them both at the same time. My awareness, and philosophy, began to grow through my choral experiences in the Madison Children’s Choir, with a director who would not allow us to assume anything.
Music in Children’s Choir was unusual and challenging. We encountered many cultures and characters in our music; I hope to offer as much diversity to my students. Most significant to me were the variety of women, from wise grandmothers to defiant dancers. We talked about the stories in our music; for some songs we wrote our own narratives. A few years later I took a Women Studies course which made me realize how special it was to have sung and created those stories about women: stories where femininity was unlimited. We did not remove gender from our songs; we talked about it. After studying women’s history I was suddenly aware of all the gaps in my knowledge. I observed the discrepancy between what female roles our institutions recognize and document compared to roles women actually fill. Because of these experiences, gender issues are prominent in my mind and my hopes for teaching. I want to teach about women’s experiences (and avoid the female as spectator tradition), advocate for women composers, and find meaningful texts for young women to sing. I also want to teach music of many cultures and perspectives. I will include women in the curriculum that I teach as I include women in the curriculum that I study, finding both empty and incomplete without all sides of humanity.
In addition to feminist issues, interpretation and varied approaches to music interest me as well. Through the many great teachers I have worked with, I have learned to see music on many levels. Not only important are the technical aspects of a song: phrasing, diction, dynamics. Also important is interpretation; who is the subject, who is the object, and what the text means in a variety of historical and cultural contexts. Frustration and numbness result from only singing the notes and noticing only the dynamic markings. I hope to cultivate in my students an awareness about themselves, the music, and the culture the music comes from. I do not want to ignore the emotions and connections that motivate us to sing, while we work for creating great music. Intellectual and emotional challenges will come through challenging music and musical excellence.
At college, in my Introduction to Vocal Studies class I listened to the list of composers to know and respect. Purcell, Schumann, Finsee, Fuare, and Britten were dutifully written down in my notebook. I waited. I finally asked if there were any women composing art songs, the rather flustered answer was a “well, yes, Clara Schumann and Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel composed songs too.” Surprisingly, even as we approached modern composers women were still absent. I hope this scene does not foreshadow the next four years of my educational experiences: constantly asking for this “additional” information, when it should be part of the curriculum. Women composers do no exist in the standard vocal repertoire I have encountered. Digging around for a variety of female composers falls to my shoulders. My teacher heartily supports my efforts but can give relatively little guidance about this group of composers. Perhaps the standard repertoire could use some additions, as could my teacher’s library.
I look toward my music education classes with anticipation and excitement. I wonder what I will learn, how the formula will fit me. Feeling like I have just begun to wade into these issues, I am at times unsure how much deeper I can go with this formula. In my course book search I have found one class that officially deals with issues of gender in education, it is called “Multicultural Education.” I wonder how one class can begin to cover the importance and complexity of these issues. Of course, these subjects will inevitably arise in other classes. For example, I am currently taking “Psychology of Learning,” and in our inclusive textbook there was a multicultural education chapter which included a portion about gender. The several paragraphs devoted to this issue quoted statistics about test score differences and briefly discussed their significance. How will I explore my philosophy when information pertinent to its development remain as subsets to the real curriculum? As to the emotive and intellectual levels motivating musical excellence and vise versa, at this point I am keenly aware of secondary dominance, my soft palate, and the beauty of Verdi’s Requiem. The connections do not always list so easily.
College is undoubtedly a time for expansion, however the direction of that expansion can easily become unbalanced. How will I use the knowledge and perspective I have gained though my previous choir experiences and Women Studies? Therefore, along with excitement for my classes, trepidation lies in my anticipation. The question of whether I will be able to deepen and develop my analysis of music education and feminism together presses the most, and like all the others remains yet unanswered. The course book states that part of the curriculum is to help us create a philosophy. Once we develop it will the classes offer us the tools to teach our philosophies? If the tools are not at the disposal of my professors will they encourage experimentation in methods or practice in The Method? So I will continue to think about the formula, not pessimistically, but inquisitively. If I do not bring myself to music it is meaningless. The same goes for my education, and I have my own formula to fit in: 19 years + feminism + passion + music + college + love + . . . = Me.
I’m in a really cranky mood these days. The injustices of the world are seeming more and more insurmountable, and the title, “feminist,” is becoming more and more of a liability. Let me explain by sharing the experiences of several junior faculty colleagues, in addition to my own…
ENTER THE FEMINIST SCOLD!
Admonishment #1: A feminist who applied for an assistant professorship was told, informally by a committee member, that a professor led a campaign against her scholarship because all of it had something to do with feminism. Actually, only half of her work is directly related to feminism, but obviously the “f” stuff was so alarming that the committee member couldn’t see past it to the rest of her work. The feminist remarked that, “If all of my scholarship had something to do with any other subject, the committee would see me as a focused and productive researcher, right?”
Admonishment #2: During what a friend of mine describes as a “brief moment of insanity,” she chose to speak-up at a faculty meeting where they were discussing advisement for a new undergraduate degree program. In making her point, the feminist used the word “empowered.” This drew an immediate response from the associate chair, “I don’t know anything about feminism, but I’m trying.” While mentally agreeing with his inadvertent self-assessment, she explained to me that simply using the word “empowered” now connoted a feminist position or critique.
Admonishment #3: In a low moment, another friend found herself complaining to her dad (more insanity) about a recent faculty review of her work. A committee member had told her, informally of course, that the faculty questioned the value and productivity of feminist critique in her field. No one from her field was on this committee, but another faculty member remarked that feminist criticism was passé in his field. Her dad reassured her by saying, “I told you, you can’t make a career out of feminism!”
Admonishment #4: I recently went on a first date with a professor who teaches about and works with labor unions. I found myself admiring his fighting spirit and his concern for the underprivileged. However, when I eventually revealed that my work was feminist he panicked and snapped, “Do you even like men?”
Perhaps cranky is an understatement! Besides, it sounds like a condition considered curable by two Midol and a pint of chocolate ice cream. Incensed, outraged, profoundly wounded more accurately describe my present state of mind as I negotiate the difficult terrain of a university in the 90s with visible feminist baggage.
THE (REAL?) AUDIENCE FOR FEMINISM
I had always thought that the university is open to radical ideas, and that it is the one place one could make a career out of feminism; but since I’ve been an assistant professor, I have found the most tolerant and interested audience among public-school music teachers–a group I shamefully underestimated. Let me give you some examples from two presentations I gave concerning gender issues: one for WMEA, and one for WCDA.
Two years ago the president of the Wisconsin Music Educator’s Association, Susan McAlister, asked me to present a session on gender and music education. My first response was, “Why bother? No one will come.” She was quick to assure me that everyone on the planning committee, including the band directors, voted for the inclusion of this session. I was delighted at the invitation, but anxious about its reception. I considered titling the presentation, “Does the Wonder Bra Really Improve Diaphragmatic Breathing?” thinking that if I demonstrated a sense of humor about the subject more people would show up! Eventually I settled for, “Things that make you go Hmm! Gender Equity and Choral Music Education.”
I began the presentation with a discussion of how society has defined gender characteristics, and how both men and women maintain the categories of masculine and feminine. I wanted to extinguish unproductive binary thinking, such as men=bad and women=good. Then I went through a series of issues including: a brief historical overview of gender preferencing in western music, a look at the lack of women composers and Carl Seashore’s explanation for this phenomenon, gender preferencing in music education in terms of the sorting of teachers by gender (male band directors, female general music teachers), the gendered sorting of sounds that create a hierarchy of status among choirs (SATB, TTBB, SSAA), repertoire issues that maintain this hierarchy, other practices that maintain the hierarchy such as audition practices and method books focus, and ended with a review of ACDA’s confused attempt to promote gender equity at their 1995 national conference. I concluded the presentation by asking the listeners to consider a new question. If they believed that some or all the these practices were unfair to women then they were already a feminist. The question then is not, “Am I a feminist?” but rather, “How am I a feminist and how do I plan to take action?”
I practiced this presentation on my sophomore pre-service students and was delighted but a little unnerved by their response. They enjoyed the presentation and applauded enthusiastically; however, only the four men remained after class to ask questions. They appreciated the permission to become feminists, stating that they always felt sympathetic but afraid that women didn’t want their sympathy or want them to be part of the movement. The nine women in the class just packed-up and left. Hmm…
The teachers were equally receptive to my conference presentation. Over 60 people attended (and stayed for) the presentation. The ending applause was overwhelmingly supportive, and I was moved by their reception. I spent the remainder of the conference talking to teachers who had further questions, examples of being entangled in inequitable situations, or stories about trying to change the status quo. For the first time in my life, I felt like a successful feminist educator. Then I went home to the university. Hmm…
Last Fall I received a call from Rebecca Winnie, organizer of the WCDA conference, who said that the choral directors wanted a follow-up session that focused on repertoire and pedagogy issues for girls. Needless to say, my cynicism had dissipated and I readily agreed. For this presentation I chose 10 pieces of music that were empowering for middle and high school girls. I also prepared a list of rehearsal discussion questions that focused the ensemble on women’s issues contained in the repertoire. I then planned to start the session with a discussion of how choral directors neglect girls, drawing parallels to the AAUW report on how schools cheat girls. Unfortunately, the title given by the session organizer was merely, “Repertoire for Women’s Choirs.”
Vs. Boychoir Voices
I offered this session twice. The first time, it competed with the boychoir demonstration of the male changing voice, and lost. Hmm… I only had eight participants, four men and four women. I began the session with an apology for the misleading title and explained how this was not the typical repertoire “reading session” because, to frame this repertoire, we were going to talk about how choirs cheat girls. I could see three of the men, who were seated together, look at each other and then glance desperately at the door. They slumped down in their chairs as they must have decided it was too far away to slip unobtrusively out. For most of the session they stared at the floor and displayed blatant lack of interest. By the end of the session they were practically rocking back and forth in their chairs, exerting the restraint one uses when trying to ignore the discomfort of an irritated mosquito bite. At one point I acknowledged their discomfort and asked them if they would like to refute or question anything. They curtly replied, “NO!”
The other five participants eagerly participated in the discussion. The remaining man was particularly interested. He expressed his frustrations with trying to empower female students and their resistance to his good faith efforts. He talked about the numerous ways he approached this issue from picking “sensitive” repertoire to initiating discussions, but at every turn he felt the girls excluded him. As we discussed the difficulty “father” figures may have in playing this role, he surprised me by adding, “Anyway, aren’t we just lying to them? They are not going to feel empowered in the real world!”
I then changed the discussion toward teachers as “agents of social change” as opposed to reproducers of the status quo.
His wife told us that she informs female vocal students that they will have to work twice as hard as male singers for fewer rewards. If they are willing to accept these conditions, then she is willing to teach them. This is not exactly my idea of social change, but perhaps it is a moment of consciousness raising for young girls? I did wonder if she accepted male students unequivocally. Even as the boychoir clamored over us to retrieve their hats and coats to go home, these five teachers remained an extra 15-20 minutes to finish talking about issues and repertoire.
Is Male-Bashing Okay?
The afternoon session had much better attendance: 30 women and one man. The participants guided the direction of the conversation by their enthusiasm and curiosity. We came to a few “sticking” points; the most notable was over the issue of male-bashing. A couple of women suggested that singing women-centered music was equivalent to and created an atmosphere for male bashing. When I questioned the problem with male bashing, they quickly took up the care-taker role and said that it wasn’t fair to men. After all, not all men are the enemy. I asked them to think about how society expects women to be “good girls” and not outspoken or angry, and about society’s unflattering depictions of women who break their silence. We then talked about male-bashing as a liberatory phase in consciousness raising for women.
After the presentation, I spoke with a number of former choir students and asked them for feedback. One said she overheard two women irritably mumbling something like, “These young girls need to learn to take it, just like we did.” Although the comment dismayed us all, we had a healthy discussion about what kinds of life experiences might lead one to wish something like that on a younger generation. Another student found herself consoling a woman who was fretting over how to change all the repertoire before the next concert, which I gathered was near. The student suggested the teacher look for one new song that would allow the women to discuss identity issues, and then possibly engage the choir in a critique of the other texts. Another student suggested that I include more statistics in my presentation because this would lend more authority to what I was saying. While I thought this was a good suggestion, I also was disgruntled by her need for “scientific” authority. I asked her if today’s discussion accurately depicted her experiences and she agreed. I asked if she thought these experiences were generalizable and she, along with the other students, agreed. So I asked her why she felt she needed statistics to lend credibility to her experiences? This issue precipitated a great discussion with all the students. Again, I felt like a successful feminist educator.
WHY BOTHER? BECAUSE IT DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE
One Teacher at a Time
While I encounter plenty of resistance to gender issues from public-school music teachers, the resistance, in fact, encourages me. I think we all tend to push against new ideas that upset the tidiness of our everyday lives, but that doesn’t mean we don’t re-order our world because of those new ideas. Unlike my experiences at the university, in many cases I have found resistance from public-school music teachers to indicate interest. As a result, I am encouraged by the numerous conversations I’ve had in hallways and in bars with women and men who are struggling with feminists issues, who care about gender equity, who want to make a difference, but don’t have anyone to talk to or to encourage them. So, why bother? Because it does make a difference, one teacher at a time.
And All Together
I feel the same loneliness and frustration in trying to do this important cultural work, and hence the reason for writing this article. I wanted to share my experiences in hopes of finding a community that will speak up. Are any of you doing these sorts of workshops/presentations? Do you include feminist critique in your method classes and how is it received? Do you have successful materials or curricula you could share? Perhaps we could start a dialogue about these issues on the grime listserv?
If any of you are interested in the handouts from these workshops, or the feminist materials I use at the sophomore and junior level, please contact me via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. In the meantime, please continue to bother.
1997 International Association of Jazz Educators Annual Conference, Chicago, Illinois, January 8-11 1997, Kimberly McCord
The Women’s Caucus sponsored a panel discussion/concert by professional jazz women in an attempt to reach out to the many girls and young women attending the convention. Musicians who participated were: Ann Patterson, saxophones; Holly Hofmann, flute; Elaine Burt, trumpet and flugelhorn; Audrey Morrison, trombone; Ellen Rowe, piano; Robin Connell, piano; Karyn Quinn, bass; Marian Hayden, bass; Sherrie Maricle, drums; and Sunny Wilkinson, vocals. The group was joined by Marian McPartland who discussed the history of women in jazz and played with Hayden and Maricle. There was an open jam session/reception where younger musicians had the opportunity to talk with older musicians and to play. The women’s caucus and the IAJE board approved seed funding for the Sisters in Jazz program. Sisters in Jazz is a mentoring program for young women and girls wanting to pursue a jazz career. They are matched up with professional women mentors. New state chapters are being formed across the country. Contact Sunny Wilkinson at 1460 Oscoda Street, Okemos, MI 48864 for more information.
There were a number of women performers and clinicians at the conference including Holly Hofmann, the all-woman group, Straight Ahead, Abbey Lincoln, The Laura Caviani Trio, Sue Conway, Renee Rosnes, Ellen Rowe, Diana Spradling, and Sunny Wilkinson. In addition, vocalist Anita O’Day was presented with the “National Endowment for the Arts, Jazz Master” award and saxophonist Jane Ira Bloom was awarded the Charlie Parker Fellowship.
Next year’s conference will once again offer the women’s panel/concert, Sisters in Jazz and the women’s Caucus meeting. A new event will be the honoring of a jazz woman legend from New York. There will be a new added educator’s track of workshops and concerts aimed at elementary and secondary general music teachers who would like help with integration of jazz into their classroom. The track will occur over two days culminating in a concert and panel at Lincoln Center with Wynton Marsalis. College credit will be available.
The IAJE conference is one of the largest jazz events and features four days of great concerts, workshops, panels and jam sessions for anyone who loves jazz. The next conference will be January 7-10, 1998 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel. For more information contact IAJE, Box 724, Manhattan, KS 66505. Phone (913)-776-8744.
A Review of the World Premiere of “Fertility Rites”
Charlene Morton, OISE/University of Toronto
Included in the April 4, 1997 concert program of the Faculty Artist Series at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto, was the world premiere of “Fertility Rites” by Canadian composer Christos Hatzis. Before listening to the performance of “Fertility Rites”, I read Hatzis’s detailed program notes. I quote them verbatim:
“Fertility Rites” for five-octave marimba and tape is part of a series of works all written in the 1990s. The connecting thread that runs through all of these works is Inuit throat singing. My fascination with the Inuit and their culture started in 1992 during the course of creating a radio documentary/composition for CBC Radio called “The Idea of Canada.” That was the first time I heard this strange and haunting music. A few years later I got myself involved in a similar project this time focusing entirely on Inuit culture and throat singing in particular. This latter project took CBC producer Keith Horner and me to Baffin Island in Arctic Canada where we spent two weeks recording throat singers and interviewing elders of the Inuit communities in Iqaluit and Cape Dorset. The recorded material was eventually used in four compositions (including this one), the other three being “Footprints in New Snow,” a thirty-eight minute radio documentary/composition, “Nunavut” for string quartet and tape, and “Hunter’s Dream”, a one-minute miniature commissioned by rock keyboardist Morgan Fisher for a compact disc of miniatures he was producing at the time in Japan. The title of the work derives from the throat songs themselves. In one of our interviews in Iqaluit, Keith and I learned that throat songs were originally a fertility ritual, a shamanistic mating call which the women performed while the men were out hunting. The “katajjaq” (vocal games) in this piece are used to evoke this primordial practice. Their sexual suggestiveness is further enhanced by electronic processing (lowering the pitch by an octave or more transforms the original sound into a semblance of heavy breathing), or through juxtaposing the “katajjaq” against other types of amorous music stylistically more familiar to the listener, such as the “French-sounding” second movement or the tango-like music of the third. In addition to the “katajjaq” samples, the tape part consists of pre-recorded marimba sounds (normal, “bent” and bowed) which both in terms of timbre and musical treatment represent a virtual extension of the instrument’s abilities. In a programmatic sense they represent the performer’s “thoughts” or “instincts” in contrast to the instrument on stage which represents the performer’s “voice.” Sometimes what is being “felt” and what is being “said” are diametrically opposed, like in the first movement where the gentle, non-possessive music for the marimba and the dark, longing calls on the tape contradict each other. But in the end both inner and outer worlds merge into uninhibited abandon and celebration of sexuality and life.
Thus ends Hatzis’s program notes on his “Fertility Rites”. Thus ended, before it began, my potential appreciation for his carefully explained and crafted work. Having had time to reflect on my initial reaction, I would like to explain two concerns I have with Hatzis’s new composition.
My first concern is that Hatzis’s work colonizes and eroticizes Inuit women’s vocalizations. His composition is an example of what Edward Said describes in Orientalism as the projection of male imperialist fantasies onto the musical mappings of high art in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Masquerading as a celebration of Canadian multiculturalism and national identity, Hatzis’s musical interpretation of “sexuality and life” is both oppressive and forced. It purports to present “The Idea of Canada” as a multicultural community that includes the “true north strong and free”. This is a familiar creative technique to revitalize a sometimes weary high-art composition tradition. The appropriation, however, of “strange and haunting music” from the furthest (dis)placed ethnic communities outside the Canadian urban core raises serious ethical issues. “Fertility Rites” might sound creative and “multicultural” to mainstream high-art audiences; but, in distorting and decontextualizing the Inuit vocal practice, Hatzis’s composition does not advance or even affirm Inuit culture as an equal cultural practice within the dominant anglo or white Canadian culture.
My second concern is the selective nature of Hatzis’s interpretation of throat songs as primordial mating games. This interpretation misrepresents the broad and more familiar understanding of vocal games. (The selective nature of this interpretation was brought to my attention by Dr. Beverley Diamond, York University.) Although some texts in these games have sexual allusions, the purpose and meaning (if indeed concepts such as purpose and meaning are culturally transferable in this context) of throat games in general vary considerably from community to community. Jean-Jacques Nattiez dispenses with any notion of “purpose” or “meaning” stating that the ludic dimension predominates in these vocal games. (“Ludus” is Latin for game.) He adds that, although first understood by Whites as throat songs or music, they were later given the more accurate designation throat games by Beverley (Cavanagh) Diamond and Nicole Beaudry. Finally, in contrast to Hatzis’s sexual interpretation of throat singing (on the basis of “one” interview), Nattiez writes:
“It is this author’s hypothesis that in the past katajjaq fulfilled some shamanistic function, representing a kind of symbolic task division: while men were out hunting, women played katajjaq to influence the spirits of natural elements or of animals (named or imitated in the game) and thus, from a distance, contributed to the success of an essential survival activity.”
In contrast to Nattiez’s appreciation of a northern life dependent on the success of a hunt, Hatzis selects a narrow interpretation of throat games in order to create a musical representation of “sexual suggestiveness” akin to obscene phone calls.
Some people might well respond positively to future performances of “Fertility Rites.” And, no doubt Hatzis understands his musical project in non-political terms. However, I think we have a moral responsibility to raise questions that problematize the appropriation and interpretations of Northern cultures by contemporary composers. I would like to suggest, for example, that Hatzis and his audience ask themselves why Hatzis felt compelled to sample Inuit women’s voices rather than record himself in the throes of sexual excitement.
(In 1995, Hatzis was appointed Associate Professor at the Faculty of Music where he teaches composition and electroacoustic music. “Fertility Rites” was commissioned by Beverley Johnston, percussionist, Faculty of Music/UT, with financial assistance from the Grants to Composers Program of the Toronto Arts Council. For a list of references, see Jean-Jacques Nattiez’s entry “Inuit vocal games” in The Encyclopedia of Music in Canada.)
Carol Ann Weaver: The music drama, QUIETLY LANDED?, with collected writings by women of Mennonite background, and music by Carol Ann Weaver (drama created by Weaver and a team of collaborators), toured the USA, April 25, 26, 27, 1997 with performances at Messiah College, Grantham, PA, and near Philadelphia in the Harleysville, PA area. Six performers from Ontario and two American writers created the cast, with Weaver performing piano and keyboards and tape of “found sounds.”
Dr. Mary Hookey and Dr. Eileen Winter, Nipissing University
This paper takes a “teachable moment” in the music education classroom and examines the implications of this event for two reasons: for self-study by the music education professor and for collaborative professional development as this professor and a colleague explore it meaning in terms of their own professional knowledge. The paper explores issues surrounding professional conversations as research, the impact of life history on the development of teacher educators and the notion of teacher educator voice in personal development and curriculum change.
Dr. Mary Hookey, Nipissing University
In an arts-based school, all topics, problems and disciplines are connected to the arts. This paper looks at one occasion in which the classroom teacher and students worked together through the arts to try to change classroom relationships and the climate for learning in the classroom. Through examining how teacher and students contemplate their work, and represent a cycle of disintegration and reintegration through the arts, this occasion is more than an attempt at classroom management. As Gardner (1973) points out, this process of pulling back from experience to examine it, or manufacturing distance, is also a key means of aesthetic awareness. The paper explores linkages between these processes and contrasts them with emerging notions of participatory consciousness (Heshusius, 1994) and a praxial philosophy (Elliott, 1995). Based on the evidence and discussion, a rational is presented for a more inclusive definition of arts education in the schools.
The papers chosen for this session were grouped under the title: “Consideration of developmental issues in research and practice in music education.” David Hargreaves presented a paper entitled: “The development of musical preference across the life span” and William Smith, University of Wisconsin and Betty Ann Younker, now of University of Western Ontario, presented a paper titled, “Composing with computers: A developmental comparision of cognitive processes with elementary and secondary school-aged novice musicians.”
Summer Session 1997 (July 3 – Aug 8),
Department of Curriculum, Teaching, and Learning, The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education/ University of Toronto, Course Number: 1324, Title: Curriculum Issues: Gendered Ideologies and Curricular Inequalities.
This course will apply feminist and critical perspectives to curricular problems related to categories of “hard” and “soft” knowledge. It will examine how dominant Western concepts such as reason, cognition, literacy, and technology minimize (and feminize) the value of learning through intuition, experience, orality, and the body. It will also explore pedagogical initiatives to counter systemic gender norms which underlie our understanding of core subjects and extra-curricular activities. By developing initiatives that will redress the valuative norms that mark curricular activities and disciplines as inherently feminine or masculine, it will compensate for a propensity within feminist theory to focus on girls’ education to the exclusion of a critical analysis of the structure of curricula. Thus, the purpose of the course is to develop practical initiatives based on an integrated understanding of curricular inequalities among as well as within each subject area. Although the design of the course realizes the importance of participation from educators in all disciplines, the course should be of particular interest to educators of “frill” subjects.
Schedule: Mornings 9:00-12:00 Tuesdays and Thursdays; Instructor: Dr. Charlene Morton, Visiting Scholar, Theory and Policy Studies in Education <email@example.com>
Cross Currents: Setting an Agenda for Music Education in Community Culture, edited by Marie McCarthy, University of Maryland, College Park, 1996.
Renowned ethnomusicologist Bruno Nettl comments as follows about Cross Currents: “This group of papers makes an unusually strong contribution to the understanding of issues that emerge from recent developments in American society, from current music history, and from changed understanding of the world of music, the musics of the world. It provides stimulating reading for all who are interested in the future of music education and of American musical culture.”
Cross Currents is a publication of the proceedings of the second Music Education Colloquium held at the University of Maryland on April 22, 1995. This series is intended to be the print equivalent of a recurring forum among artists, educators, and policy-makers. The colloquium examines many of the complex issues surrounding current multicultural education in music. A new model to consider for multicultural education, the concentric Circles Music Model, is presented by Patricia Shehan Campbell in her keynote address, “Music, Education, and Community in a Multicultural Society.”
Through the vehicle of the colloquium three scholars offer a valuable contribution to the ongoing discussion of the issues surrounding education and multicultural communities. Susan R. Wolf (philosopher), Michael L. Mark (music educator), and Paddy B. Bowman (folklorist) address Shehan’s innovative ideas and offer insight into Campbell’s model, each from a different perspective.
Marie McCarthy, as Editor, synthesizes the discussion at the colloquium which focused on each circle of the model and reports the expansion of the circles to include the student. She highlights the issues which emerged as critical to the future direction of multicultural music education by the participants.
Order Information: To order send a $12 US cheque or money order to the Music Library, Hornbake 3210, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742. Make cheques payable to The University of Maryland Foundation.
Roberta Lamb, Editor. If you would like to write a conference or book review, please do!! Letters are welcome; reviews of available recordings or videos would be good, too. Please try to write short articles (1000 words). Submissions may be made by regular mail, FAX 613-545-6808, or by email <firstname.lastname@example.org>. Deadline for the Autumn issue: 15 October 1997. We welcome more on practical issues of addressing gender issues in teaching/ learning settings of all kinds.