Chairs

CONFERENCE CHAIRS

 

Sharri K. Hall (she/hers)

Sharri is a doctoral student in Historical Musicology and a Presidential Scholar studying Christianity, the ethics of listening, and twentieth century Germanic music traditions. Her research focuses on affect, agency, and ethics in the music of conservative Evangelical traditions in the United States, especially concerning issues of race and politics. Sharri holds an M.M. in Flute Performance from Oklahoma City University and a B.M. in Flute Performance from Cedarville University. When not researching, Sharri can be found tending to her 100+ plant collection and crocheting.

 

Eloy F. Ramirez (he/him/his)

Eloy is a graduate student and Kaplan Fellow at Harvard University pursuing a Ph.D. in Historical Musicology with a secondary field in American Studies. His research interests include sound as resistance, mobility and memory, decolonial methodologies, and U.S. experimentalism from the mid-20th century onward—with a primary focus on the San Francisco Tape Music Center and the Chicano Movement. Recent projects involve the efficacy of sound for healing and resistance in 1960s counterculture movements in the San Francisco Bay Area. Eloy seeks to examine issues including cultural formation, settler colonialism, and social perceptions of gender, race, and ethnicity within local histories to better understand larger American cultural norms. He received his bachelor's degree with honors in music education and bassoon at Texas State University before obtaining his MM in Musicology at the University of Arizona. As a first-generation U.S. citizen, expanding the literature of musicians belonging to marginalized groups and decentering European epistemologies is central in his research.

SESSION CHAIRS

 

Stephen Ai (he/him/his)

Stephen Tian-You Ai is a pianist, toy pianist, and music theorist with a strong inclination towards early music, new music, and their intersections. He has appeared in concert with the BlackBox Ensemble, Horizon Ensemble, the Berkshire Symphony, the San Diego Symphony, and the Los Angeles Bach Festival Orchestra. His primary teachers include Ms. Doris Stevenson, Dr. Judy Huang, Ms. Mariam Nazarian, and Ms. Anna Stal. Stephen is currently a doctoral student and GSAS Presidential Scholar at Harvard University, where he studies pop music, queer theory, and early modern keyboard tuning and temperament. He holds degrees from CUNY Queens College, Clare Hall at the University of Cambridge, and Williams College. You can follow Stephen’s past and ongoing projects at stephenai.com.

 

Alexander W. Cowan (he/him/his)

Alexander W. Cowan is a 6th year PhD candidate in Historical Musicology at Harvard University. He holds an MMus in Musicology from King’s College, London, and a BA in Music from St. Hugh’s College, Oxford. His dissertation, “Unsound: A Cultural History of Music and Eugenics,” explores how ideas about music and musicality were weaponized in British and US-American eugenics movements in the first half of the twentieth century, and how ideas from this period survive in modern music science and the rhetoric of the contemporary far right. His research has been supported by the American Musicological Society, the Society for American Music, and the Charles Warren Center for American Studies.

Cana McGhee (she/her)

Cana (KAY-nuh) is a PhD candidate in Historical Musicology. A native Atlantan, she earned her BA from Emory University. Her undergraduate studies culminated in an Honors thesis about the role of French-language art song in conversations in linguistic nationalist movements in fin-de-siècle France and Belgium. Currently, her work revolves around musical engagements with natural science, climate change, and environmentalism. Her dissertation project will focus on the spectrums of silence and the identities rendered audible across a range of domestic plant care practices. Apart from her academic life, Cana also enjoys choral singing, long runs, and writing short stories.

 

Jonathan Gómez (he/him/his)

Jonathan Gómez is a Ph.D. Candidate in Music with a secondary field in African and African American Studies at Harvard University. His research is focused on Black American music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. His dissertation project, "The Way We Play”: Black American History, Humanity, and Musical Identity explores how Black Americans hear and represent themselves in musical sound from the early twentieth century to the present. Jonathan is a jazz saxophonist and holds an M.A. in Musicology from Michigan State University, and a B.M. in in Studio Music and Jazz from the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music.

 

Siriana Lundgren (she/hers)

Siriana is a third year PhD student whose research focuses on intersectional feminist critique of musicking throughout the American West. She is also dedicated to public scholarship and has curated digital exhibits on the life and legacy of Dr. Eileen Southern and gender in the American West. Siriana also has a secondary interest in girlhood, capitalism, and music on the internet, primarily realized through an obsession with TikTok. She holds a B.M. in Vocal Performance and Gender Studies from St. Olaf College, which mostly means that she just loves to sing. But, when she’s not singing, she can likely be found watching Star Trek.

 

Christina Misaki Nikitin (she/hers)

Christina is a doctoral student in ethnomusicology at Harvard University. Working at the intersections of music studies, performance studies, feminist and queer theories, and post-/decolonial thought, her research examines the politics and aesthetics of musicking in queer underground music scenes in Japan, South Africa, and the United States. Outside of academia, she also has experience as a K-12 instructor, independent consultant, and administrative assistant at various educational organizations in Tokyo, Japan. She received a B.A. with honors in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Comparative Literature from Stanford University.

 

Sara Viola Speller (she/hers)

Sara is a doctoral student in historical musicology. Her research interests concern the philosophy of music, specifically aesthetics, pedagogy, and historiography of “Western art-music” from the late-19th century onward. She looks at ways to interrogate the institutional biases and rigidities buried within presiding narratives of music analysis and pedagogy, and how these narratives may or may not (actively) enforce supremacist ideology. She is interested in approaches that refigure composers and their music as case studies within the material and political world of their times, which allows for experimental historiography, including but not limited to contextual music analyses that situate ‘standard canon composers’ as the Other. Before entering this department, Sara received a BA in Music from Yale University, as well as an MPhil in Musicology from University of Oxford. She has overwatered every cactus that has ever crossed her path.

 

FACULTY MODERATORS