Noted music historian is the 2015 Franke Visiting Fellow

Carolyn Abbate, the Paul and Catherine Buttenweiser University Professor of Music at Harvard University, has been appointed as the 2015 Franke Visiting Fellow at the Whitney Humanities Center (WHC).

Abbate will give a lecture titled “Sound Object Lessons” at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 10 in the WHC auditorium, 53 Wall St. The talk is free and open to the public.

Abbate received a B.A. from Yale and a Ph.D. from Princeton. In 2014 she was named a University Professor, Harvard’s highest honor for a faculty member. Abbate, who was a visiting professor at the Freie Universität Berlin, previously held faculty positions at Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania. She was recognized with research fellowships and lectureships at the Wissenschaftskolleg Berlin, Kings College Cambridge, the University of Hong Kong, and the Institute for Advanced Study. Her writings focus on opera, from its beginnings around 1600 through the 21st century. She has also published essays on musical automata, film music, ephemeral art, and operetta’s ethical frivolity.

Abbate’s latest book, co-authored with Roger Parker, is titled “A History of Opera: The Last 400 Years.” Her current project focuses on sound in the Machine Age and examines issues ranging from knowledge of the human sensorium and listening in past eras, artisanal practices of supplying music in film exhibition, to the growth of alternative, vernacular philosophies of musical meaning from cinematic sound design in the 1920s and 1930s.

The Franke Visiting Scholars and Artists Program is made possible by the generosity of Richard and Barbara Franke. The creation of this residential fellowship is intended to ensure ongoing interdisciplinary exchange and creative debate at the Whitney Humanties Center in particular and at Yale in general. The Frankes have also endowed an annual lecture series and the Franke Program in Science and the Humanities.

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Whitney Humanities Center:, 203-432-0670