Michael Vincent went from playing guitar and listening to Led Zeppelin in high school to investigating strands of international and regional dialects in 18th century music, which has landed him the opportunity of a lifetime this summer.
Vincent, a School of Music graduate student studying music history, was awarded the 2015-2016 Tedder Family Doctoral Fellowship from the University of Florida’s Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere for “Cosmopolitan Culture in Boccherini’s Madrid, 1785-1800.” The Tedder Family Doctoral Fellowship is an opportunity for doctoral students and faculty to travel to important archives, complete fieldwork and enjoy uninterrupted time to write.
Vincent will be doing just that.
“I am traveling to Paris and Berlin to look at manuscripts, and I am hoping to find details that will show how it relates to other music of the century,” Vincent said.
Vincent’s project looks at the international music culture of 18th century music, particularly the Madrilenian chamber music of Italian-born composer Boccherini. One of the things Vincent will be investigating is this language of music that transcended national boundaries.
“If you think of music as a language, it’s a language that more people speak, and it's not tied to political boundaries,” Vincent said.
Vincent said it is a relevant concept today because the world is dealing with globalization and international relations that have nothing to do with a person’s nationality. “You are of a certain nationality but a citizen of a global community,” Vincent said.
Vincent feels indebted to his adviser, Associate Professor Margaret Butler, Ph.D., who helped him with his fellowship application and his research trip this summer. His trip began May 28, 2015 and feels blessed to be able to look at primary sources.
“I’d like to learn and look at this music because it hasn’t been published, but I know it exists,” Vincent said. “I don’t know what it looks or sounds like; it is almost like studying a painting you’ve never seen.”