Graduate Seminar on Topics in Jewish Music at YIVO

Graduate Seminar on Topics in Jewish Music
Taught by Dr. Neil Levin, Visiting Professor-in-Residence

This eight session graduate seminar, YIVO’s first such seminar in music, will embrace an array of topics within the wider spectrum of Jewish Studies related to the music of Jewish experience or connection—secular-cultural as well as sacred-liturgical aspects—according to the interests and pursuits of the participants.

This seminar is open to graduate students within any department at all colleges, universities or conservatories. It is not restricted to those within music departments per se, but also open to those pursuing Jewish Studies in general—especially history, literature, theatre, liturgy, or other sub-fields of Jewish Studies—who may have special interest in related music in terms of context and interdisciplinary consideration.

With prior approval, undergraduate (college, university, or conservatory) students may also be permitted to participate—both those with an interest in a particular area of Jewishly-related music and those who may be pursuing related term papers or projects.

Post-graduate students/participants are also welcome.

Specific topics as well as assignments for individual seminar presentations will be determined at the initial meeting according to the registrants/participants’ preferences and fields.

The seminar will offer research assistance and guidance with individual projects as well as general exposure to several aspects of Jewishly-related music and its historical development, group discussions, exchange of ideas and sharing of research findings, and opportunities for individual presentations.

Eight sessions on Wednesdays, 6:00pm-8:00pm:

February 8, 2017
February 22, 2017
March 8, 2017
March 22, 2017
April 5, 2017
April 26, 2017
May 10, 2017
May 17, 2017

To apply, please register here:



Neil W. Levin is a leading musicological and historical scholar and authority on the music of Jewish experience and connection in both its secular-cultural and sacred-liturgical realms. He is the Artistic Director and Editor-in-Chief of the Milken Archive of Jewish Music and an emeritus professor of Jewish music at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, on whose faculty he served for thirty years beginning in 1982. Dr. Levin holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from Columbia University and his PhD in Jewish Music from the Jewish Theological Seminary. For many years, he was the Editor of the scholarly journal, Musica Judaica. In addition to two books, he has published more than 300 articles, essays and monograph on numerous aspects of Jewishly-related music and its various historical, literary, and cultural contexts, and directed the academic and artistic production of more than 700 historically informed recordings of music of Jewish connection spanning classical, theatrical, folk and sacred-liturgical categories. In 2004 he was awarded the prestigious Deems Taylor Prize by A.S.C.A.P. for his booklet on Russian-Jewish composer Joseph Achron. He has also served on the faculties of Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in New York and Gratz College in Philadelphia.

Dr. Levin is currently working on completing his multi-volume history of the music of Jewish experience, as well as a biography of Salomon Sulzer, the framer and prime exemplar of Ashkenazi cantorial art and synagogue choral music in the modern era.