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Welcome to the Ethnomusicology Program at the University of North Texas. We are dedicated to the study of music as an integral part of culture, taking the approach that all music cultures are worthy of study. Through fieldwork—conducting interviews; attending, participating in, and observing performances; learning about local history, language and customs; and doing musical analysis—ethnomusicologists study the ways in which individuals learn, create and understand music in different cultural communities, the means by which music is transmitted via both social and media networks, the significance of music revivals, and the impact of new contexts on the style and meaning of music.

We grant the MA and PhD in Music with a Concentration in Ethnomusicology and serve as a related field for majors in other areas (see the Ethnomusicology Handbook for further details). Courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level are open to all students regardless of major. Whether in graduate seminars or in one of the many world music ensembles, the program emphasizes doing ethnomusicology. The curriculum challenges students to engage musical experience in all of its dimensions in preparation for careers in both academia and the public sector.

The Ethnomusicology Program is home to a distinguished faculty, whose professional experience and expertise range from extensive work in the public sector, to specialization in the musics of Latin America, Africa, and India, and includes internationally recognized master musicians from those traditions. Our students have published in peer-reviewed journals, presented at international conferences, and have received significant external grant support, including a 2017 Fulbright-Hays Dissertation Grant. If you are passionate about the study of ethnomusicology, we encourage you to consider joining us at the University of North Texas.



Recent News

Presser Award
Monday, February 26, 2018

Yuxin Mei, PhD graduate student in ethnomusicology, has been awarded the prestigious Presser Award from the UNT College of Music. The $10,000 grant will allow her to travel to China to enhance her knowledge as director of the UNT Chinese Music Ensemble, as a scholar and teacher. She will work with prestigious musicians and ensembles in three different regions of the country to learn about and collect new and emerging Chinese ensemble repertoire as well as ancient and representative regional ensemble styles and notation techniques to broaden her own knowledge as well as that of the ensemble. Her long term goal is to create a manual for use by other Chinese ensemble directors in the US.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Click here to read the story in the NT Daily.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Dr. Steven Friedson, University Distinguished Research Professor, and Yuxin Mei, Director of the UNT Chinese Ensemble, received a China Venture Fund Grant to travel to China in Summer 2018 to recruit graduate students in ethnomusicology, investigate potential sites for research, and to scope out venues for a tour of the UNT Chinese Ensemble to China. They will be visiting the China Conservatory of Music, Beijing; Xi’an Conservatory of Music; and the Xing Hai Conservatory of Music in Guangzhou.

The College of Music, under the auspices of the Ethnomusicology Area, initiated the first Chinese Music Ensemble at a Texas university in 2015. Directed by internationally acclaimed pipa (Chinese lute) artist, Yuxin Mei, the ensemble has recently been the recipient of a $25,000 grant, which funded the purchase of high quality, professional Chinese instruments, making the UNT Chinese Ensemble arguably the best equipped ensemble in the United States. As evidence of their growing national stature, the ensemble has been invited to play at the Confucius Institute of Denver for the Chinese New Year celebration in February 2018, and was honored to receive an invitation to participate in the prestigious "China West Lake International Youth Music Festival” in China.