Current Students


Peter Breithaupt

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Peter is a PhD student in Ethnomusicology from Kalamazoo, MI. He holds a Master of Music degree in Percussion Performance from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2013) as well as a Master of Arts in Music Research (2011) and Bachelor of Music in Percussion Performance (2010) from Western Michigan University. His research has focused on addressing the roles of individual creativity and improvisation in Shona mbira dzavadzimu music from Zimbabwe. After two years of intensive Kiswahili study as a Foreign Language and Areas Studies Fellow in the Center for African Studies at the University of Illinois, his focus has shifted to exploring the acoustic guitar in eastern and southern Africa especially with respect to a cohort of contemporary singer-songwriters from Bagamoyo, Tanzania. Other research interests include cosmopolitanism, remediation, biography, and the semiotics of performance and listening.

As a percussionist and drummer, Peter has performed in a wide variety of musical settings ranging from orchestral, popular, to improvised, and has worked extensively as a modern dance accompanist. Currently, he performs regularly with Kupira Marimba, a Zimbabwean marimba/mbira band affiliated with the Austin’s Rattletree School of Marimba. Peter is also a dedicated clawhammer banjo player as well as an avid mountain biker and cyclist.

Rose Bridges

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Rose is a first-year Ph.D. student in Musicology. She is native to Detroit, Michigan, where she first discovered music through playing cello and bass, and a “Beatles phase” that never ended. She has a B.M. in Composition from the Peabody Conservatory of The Johns Hopkins University, and an M.M. in Musicology from Boston University.

Rose’s current research focuses on music in film and television, especially animation. Her M.M. thesis compared the uses of music from Wagner’s Ring in the films Apocalypse Now and The New World (2005), and the Japanese anime series Princess Tutu. She has presented papers on anime at the Music and the Moving Image conference at New York University, and will be presenting on The Brave Little Toaster as a part of the “Music, American Animation, and Society” panel at the 2016 Society for American Music conference. Rose is also interested in popular music studies, Wagner studies, and music in 19th- and 20th-century European nationalism.

Outside of her academic work, Rose writes online as a media reviewer. She is a regular contributor to Anime News Network, the most popular English-language anime and manga news site. She previously wrote for LGBT news/lifestyle website Autostraddle.

Benjamin Coghan


Office: MBE 3.508

Benjamin is a first year PhD student in Historical Musicology at UT-Austin. He received a BME with a Choral Education emphasis, a BM in Music History, and a minor in Sexuality Studies from The Ohio State University and took MM coursework in Musicology at Louisiana State University before coming to Texas. His primary musicological research centers on nineteenth-century American music with an emphasis on physical disability and music performance, circus music, military band traditions, as well as parlor and art song.

In addition to contributing scholarship to UT’s Center for American Music, Benjamin is a member of the Museum Portfolio program and has a minor area in Archival Research and Collections. He has attended multiple professional musicological conferences and was chosen to present his paper “The Music of the Invalid Corps/Veteran Reserve Corps and the Reception of Disabled Veterans in Civil War-Era Popular Songs” at upcoming meeting of The Society for American Music in Montreal. Outside of academia Benjamin enjoys video games, touring museum, local and national parks, and time with his border collie-mix rescue dog, Joplin.

Hannah Durham


Hannah Durham is a Ph.D. student in musicology. She holds Bachelors of Arts degrees in History and Music (2004, 2009) and completed her Master of Music degree at the University of Texas at Austin in 2012. Hannah’s research interests include Modernism, American popular music after 1950, genre, performance studies, and disability studies. Her dissertation will investigate the discourses surrounding David Bowie and his music in the post-1970s era—focusing on his work from 1983’s Let’s Dance through his death and post-death reception.

Hannah has served two terms as Secretary-Treasurer for the Association of Graduate Ethnomusicology and Musicology Students (AGEMS), and was instructor of record for MUS 302L: Introduction to Western Music for four semesters. Hannah has played French horn for various UT ensembles and has written, recorded, and performed with several rock bands in and around Austin as guitarist and bassist.

Julianne Graper


Office: MBE 3.410

Julianne Graper is a PhD candidate in ethnomusicology, currently developing a multispecies ethnographic project on human-bat relationships in Austin, TX and Chiapas, MX. She holds a Bachelor’s of Arts in Biology from Whitman College and a Master of Arts in Musicology from the University of Oregon.

Julianne’s article “Pussy Riot: Performing “Punkness”; or, Taking the “Riot” out of Riot Grrrl” will appear in the upcoming Songs of Social Protest anthology, published by Rowman and Littlefield International. Her translation of Susan Campos Fonseca’s “Noise, sonic experimentation and interior coloniality in Costa Rica” will also be published later this year, by Oxford University Press. In addition, Julianne acts as a translator of the New York-based music label and performance group, Irreverence Group Music.

A classically trained vocalist and pianist, Julianne performs locally with the UT Hispanic Caribbean Ensemble, as well as the Ars Longa and Inversion vocal ensembles. She has sung with the internationally acclaimed University of Oregon Chamber Choir, including a residency at the Oregon Bach Festival under Matthew Halls and Helmuth Rilling.

She currently works with Dr. Robin Moore on the Latin American Music Review.

Michael Harland


Office hours:

Laura Jorgensen


Laura Jorgensen is a PhD student in ethnomusicology who hails from Seattle. Her research centers on issues of gender, sexuality, and activism in music of the former Yugoslavia, and on Southeastern European and Middle Eastern musics more generally. She received a BM in Professional Music from the Berklee College of Music in Boston and studied abroad at the Nakas Conservatory in Athens, Greece. Originally trained as a singer in the western classical tradition, Laura’s later training in Balkan, South Asian, and Middle Eastern vocal styles has allowed her to participate in a wide variety of ensembles. Most recently she performed as a member of the Sangat ensemble, a collaboration between students and faculty from UT and Pakistan’s National Academy of Performing Arts, in concerts in Texas and Karachi, Pakistan. She is also an award-winning songwriter and released an album and an EP of original music with her Boston-based band.
Laura has presented her work at conferences in Urbana-Champaign, Belgrade, Budapest, and Hanover. She is a Teaching Assistant for Music in World Cultures and the Bereket Middle Eastern Ensemble, and has previously been TA for History of Rock Music. Laura is also pursuing a graduate certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies, and has received support from the Center for Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies and the Center for European Studies as a Foreign Language Area Studies fellow (Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian language).

Jordyn Keller


Office: MBE 3.408
Jordyn Keller is a second-year Master’s student in Musicology. She a holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the Boston Conservatory (2010). Jordyn’s research interests include the music of the Renaissance, issues of gender and sexuality, women’s studies, performance practice, and public musicology. She is currently working on her Master’s Report which will examine Anne Boleyn’s use of music to legitimize her position as queen of England through a discussion of her musical education, practice, and patronage. She is exploring ways of making this research more accessible and has begun work on a digital database which will be published later this year.

Jordyn currently serves as the Secretary-Treasurer for the Association of Graduate Ethnomusicology and Musicology Students (AGEMS). She is a Teaching Assistant for MUS 302L: Introduction to Western Music and continues to teach voice and piano lessons privately with Westlake Lessons. She also sings with “Austinato,” UT’s Early Music group.

Sarah Lahasky

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Sarah Lahasky is a second year master’s student in ethnomusicology and a member of the portfolio program in museum studies. She received a BM in double bass performance and a minor in Spanish from Shenandoah University-Conservatory. Her research interests include heritage creation and cultural policy-making, especially concerning UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Additionally, she is interested in the musics of Latin America, and particularly traditional folk musics in the Southern Cone region.

Sarah recently served as a faculty member for the Kansas City Bass Workshop, where she taught introductory classes on Argentine music and coached the workshop’s first “Music of Latin America” bass ensemble. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys performing with the UT Hispanic Caribbean and Conjunto ensembles, as well as with a country-rock band known as “The Tippers.”

Peng Liu

Office hours:

Peng Liu is currently a first-year doctoral student in musicology at the University of Texas at Austin (UT-Austin), where he is an assistant instructor for the class “Introduction to Western Music” open to non-music major undergraduates. Peng received his M.Music in musicology from UT-Austin (2016) and B.A. in musicology from China Conservatory of Music (2014) where he was the recipient of the National Scholarship in China. Peng is currently interested in various analytical approaches to Beethoven’s music and 19th-century music in general, including topic theory, music semiotics, music narrative, reception studies, and gender studies. Peng has presented his works at the AMS-Southwest Chapter Conferences in 2015 and 2016, and he will present a paper “An Ironic Comedy: Constructing a Musical Narrative for the Finale of Beethoven’s String Quartet, Op. 135” at the Second Biennial Brandeis University Graduate Student Musicology Conference in May, 2017. Peng is also actively exposed himself to academic conferences as a volunteer, such as the joint AMS/SMT annual meeting (Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada), the Seventh Biennial Conference of the Society for Eighteenth-Century Music (Austin, TX), International Forum on Comparative Music Theory (Beijing, China), and the 29th International Society for Music Education (Beijing, China). Outside of school, Peng enjoys playing piano, watching movies, hiking and traveling with his friends.

Joseph Ovalle

Office: MBE 3.406

Joseph Ovalle is a PhD student in musicology whose research interests include medieval performance practice, early notation, semiotics, ludomusicology, queerness, and issues of marginalization. Joseph received his BA and MM from The University of Texas at Austin in 2014 and 2016 respectively. His Master’s Report “Mythical Historicism as Orientation in The Legend of Zelda Series” explored how musical symbolism was utilized to reinforce the narrative chronology of The Legend of Zelda universe. His current research surrounds Gregorian chant and contemporary protest music in indie rock groups such as PWR BTTM, St. Vincent, Mitski, and Angel Olsen.

Kevin Parme


Office hours:

Kevin Parme is a first year M.M. student in ethnomusicology. Prior to graduate studies, he received his B.A. in English from San Francisco State University, spent a year interning at Smithsonian Folkways, and released two LP’s and two 7 inches under the band name Dimples. His research interests include music of the U.S.-Mexico border, American popular music, punk rock, transnationalism, and post-structuralism. He also works at Texas Folklife, an arts non-profit based out of Austin, TX.

Cary Peñate

Xuan Qin


Office: MBE 3.508

Xuan Qin is a first year doctoral student in Musicology at the University of Texas, Austin. She received her Master’s Degree from the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami in 2015, after earning a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Central Conservatory of Music in China. Her primary research interests include nineteenth century opera and gestural performance.

Xuan won the Eileen Southern Travel Grants from AMS in 2013 to attend the annual conference at Pittsburgh. Her paper “Alienation between Music and Poetry: On Cultural Misunderstanding in Alexander Tcherepnin’s Musical Setting of the Chinese Poem Drink Song” was accepted by International Graduate Student Conference in 2014 under the auspices of the International Musicological Society. Her Master’s Thesis titled “Ornament and Gesture – Approaches to Studying Bellini’s Norma and Giuditta Pasta’s Performance.” She presented one part of her thesis in the AMS Southern Chapter in 2014.

Jeannelle Ramirez


Jeannelle is a PhD student in Ethnomusicology. She completed her Masters in Ethnomusicology at UT and holds a dual BA/BFA in Jazz Vocal Performance and The Arts from The New School in New York City. Prior to attending UT, she interned at Smithsonian Folkways in Washington DC and worked as an assistant in an entertainment law practice, where she became interested in copyright and intellectual property.

She is an Americanist focused on the study of popular music. Her research interests include transnational and global flows between Latin America and the United States, Latinx and African American musics, media and technology, sound studies and intellectual property. She is concerned with the ways in which national and ethnic identities are (de)constructed through music. Her research focuses mainly on new Latin Alternative music and related styles that work against hegemonic discourses and challenge the meaning of Latinidad. She has presented papers at the Society for Ethnomusicology Southern Plains Conference, Princeton University Voz Latina Conference, and the ILASSA conference. Jeannelle is also an independent singer-songwriter and particularly enjoys creating music with computer software.

Joshua Shank

X’ene Sky


X’ene Sky Taylor is a Masters student of Musicology. She holds a degree in piano performance also from The University of Texas at Austin. Her focus includes music of the black diaspora, particularly black classical pianists of the 20th century, but ranges from Afrobeat to southern trap music and gender. She is a constant proponent of challenging white privilege, white supremacy and violence within academia and cites Saidiya Hartman as one of her biggest influences. X’ene is committed to breaking down the barriers and elitism between musicology and the public, particularly when it comes to marginalized black and brown bodies. X’ene hopes to continue making music and projects that center around black and brown children within public musicology. She will graduate in Spring 2017.

Yu Ye


Office: MBE 3.506

Yu Ye is a Ph.D. student in musicology at the University of Texas at Austin. He got a M.A. in musicology from Shanghai Conservatory of Music (2011) with the thesis on the music of Astor Piazzolla and Tango Nuevo. Currently he is working on the doctoral dissertation, dealing with the development of “concert tango” since the 1950s in the context of tango argentino and contemporary classical music. Besides this primary interest, he is also interested in music and media, and is presenting in 2017 Music and the Moving Image conference on the audio-visual design of contemporary one-shot films. His other research interests include the twentieth and twenty-first century avant-garde music, music fusion, and musical nationalism/transnationalism.

Joanna Zattiero


Joanna Zattiero is a PhD candidate and Continuing Fellow in Musicology at the University of Texas at Austin. She holds a Bachelor of Music in saxophone performance and a Master of Arts in music history from the University of Idaho. Her research specialization is late 19th and early 20th century American music, including historiography, criticism, and the development of popular music throughout the American West. Her Master’s thesis “One Small Girl, a Whole Quartet: Singer/Songwriter Lee Morse” deals specifically with a significant yet often overlooked figure in American popular music of the 1930s and how this figure navigated issues of regionalism and identity, gendered expectations within the musical context of the time, and rapid technological advances in music recording and transmission.
Joanna came to UT-Austin from Utah State University where she was an adjunct professor from 2009-2014, teaching a wide variety of music and arts courses to music majors and non-majors alike. She has presented her research at conferences of the American Musicological Society – Southwest Chapter, the College Music Society, and the Society for American Music, performed the premier of a new work for saxophone through the North American Saxophone Alliance and contributed to their NASA Update online publication, and has appeared on National Public Radio’s Sound Bites program. Prior to Utah State University, Zattiero worked in various roles with the Mid-Columbia Symphony in Washington state and has performed with various ensembles throughout the interior West.
Aside from music, Joanna has a number of diverse interests including hiking, backpacking, and training for and competing in long-distance endurance events on horseback. In her rare spare time, you may find her exploring the local parks and open space with her kids and Saint Bernard cross, Marcato.

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