So it's been a while...
I won't belabor you with details, but I HAVE A THESIS TOPIC:
Pauline Oliveros and the Quest for Musical Utopia
Gotta get into more Oliveros literature, some Utopian novels, and some research on other socialist/utopian musical movements; Dada, Futurism, Russian socialism, Cowell, Cage...
It's going to be a long, long year.
On top of that, I have to learn more German. I think I'll make it through the BYU translation test well enough, but will I have what it takes to pass a test from another PhD program that I would wish to apply to?
What I'm reading: The San Francisco Tape Music Center: 1960s Countercuture and the Avant-Garde, edited by David Bernstein, from Mills College. I hope to have a chat with him about Pauline soon. I've been in communication with him via email.
I've also been in communication with Michael Lee from Oklahoma. He has some interview material that he thinks would be useful for me.
Classes: Not many. Falls are unusually quiet at BYU. I'm technically only signed up for 2 classes: One is GEM, which I happen to ALSO be TA-ing for (yay, money!). The other is a Special Topics class on Electronic Music. It's engaging, not that much of a stress, but it has helped me a ton in figuring out what Pauline's electronic music language is. Currently we are looking at DJ and EDM music and culture, which is cool but not that inspiring for me.
ON TOP OF THAT, I am also:
1. Teaching a Sight-Singing Section
2. TA-ing for Dr. Howard, Music 301
3. Auditing Dr. Harker's Music 101 class...
This leads me to announce that I will be TEACHING Music 101 THIS SUMMER. MY OWN CLASS. My own syllabus, my own choice of text, my own tests... WOW. Surprised that Dr. Johnson trusts me with that. I should be getting a move-on in that area soon.
Since I last wrote, I have visited both the Oliveros Archives at the Houston Public Library and the Oliveros Archives at UCSD. I have yet to visit Oliveros or her archives in New York, but I'm getting on it soon. I hope to go out there in April or May.
Seems like a lot to do in only a year, but I'm thinking back on how much I have done this past year, and it seems like the harder stuff is actually over. All I have to do now is just READ READ READ, STUDY STUDY STUDY, and WRITE WRITE WRITE and I'll be there!
Part of why I want to re-introduce this blog is to keep track of what I am learning everyday so that I'll be able to better study for my oral exams at the end of my time here. This semester is not that much, but NEXT semester I am taking....
Philosophy of Music
I'll be a TA for both 303 AND 302 under Dr. Johnson next semester. Fortunately, I won't have to do too much in regards to office hours. I'm thinking I'm going to just have it be a by-appointment thing.
PLUS I'm teaching GEM (!) and Sight-singing. I'll probably be visiting some other 101 classes (besides Harker's) from time to time just to get a feel for the different approaches. I've already asked for all of the 101 syllabi that are out there, so that should also be useful.
Dr. Asplund has invited me to consider getting a second master's degree in performance art or sound art. It is intriguing, but I think I'm going to stick to Musicology. That will more likely ensure me a job, and it will allow me to do more teaching and more writing, which are things I am really good at. Performing is a wonderful hobby that I don't wish to lose, but I think that's all it ever will be. I'm not willing to devote enough time to putting programs and performances on, and I am not good at self-promotion in that way. I'm more of an appreciator than a creator of original music. But maybe that will change. I don't have to worry about applications for another year, so I've got time to consider it.
I think that brings you all up to speed about what I'm doing with my life right now. I'm about to go up and grade lots of tests for 301.