School of Music

Musicology and Ethnomusicology

Current Students

Heather Bergseth
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Afro-Brazilian Music; Pedagogy; Embodiment, Dance, and Movement; Applied

Heather is an ethnomusicologist and percussionist who is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at the University of Florida. Her dissertation examines virtual learning of capoeira music and community during the pandemic.

Her dissertation examines virtual learning of capoeira music and community during the pandemic. She completed her Master of Music degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, with a thesis comparing music schools in Ghana and Tanzania. Her bachelor's degree (from BGSU) was in Music Education and World Music. Heather’s research interests include pedagogy, embodiment and dance, and the African diaspora. She is also interested in applied ethnomusicology, and her latest work was a grant that enabled her to bring world-renowned Ghanaian musician Bernard Woma and his Saakumu dance troupe to UF for a week-long residency (2018), with the shared support and direction of her advisor. She has studied the music of Brazil, Ghana, and Cuba. She has also been a performer and teacher of North American taiko music. She is a practitioner of capoeira and has been active in the local Latin dance scene (salsa and bachata). She is an avid cat lover, and she still holds out hope her cat Mama Delores will become famous on social media (IG: heathercoruja, mamadthequeentorbie).

Cody Case
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Medical Ethnomusicology, Afro-Brazilian Popular Music, Post-Colonial Critical Race Theory in Latin America, Trauma Studies, and Arts in Medicine

Cody is a third-year PhD student interested in the intersections of Afro-Brazilian popular music, the budding discipline of medical ethnomusicology, and public health arts in medicine research.

He obtained the 2021 Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad to conduct ethnographic fieldwork in Salvador, Brazil for twelve months beginning in 2022. Cody is also earning graduate certificates in Latin American Studies and Arts and Medicine while studying Brazilian Portuguese. He earned MA and BA degrees in Ethnomusicology and studied the French language at the University of Washington research interests in popular music, politics, and religion in Ghana, France, and Tunisia. Professionally, he worked for seven years as a higher education administrator in areas of international programming, project management, website design, and diversity, equity, and inclusion at the University of Kansas. In addition to his passions for social justice and ethnomusicology research, he plays the guitar, cavaquinho (a four-stringed Brazilian instrument), oud (an 11-stringed Arab lute), and percussion. You may view his current CV below or listen to a self-produced album of his original music here.

Aaron Colverson
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Music; Biology; Culture

I am a third-year PhD student at the University of Florida studying Ethnomusicology, with partnering research in neuroscience.

I received my BA in Professional Music from Berklee College of Music and MM in Ethnomusicology from the University of Florida. My research passions lie at the crossroads of music, biology, and culture, and I endeavor to develop understanding of music as means to facilitate communication within and between these disciplinary borders. My dissertation seeks to determine differences in learning and performance of simple and complex rhythms in younger and older adults, as means to social well-being in the aging population of the United States. I am also an active performer in Gainesville, FL, playing violin and singing in multiple ensemble settings.

Jeremy Frusco
PhD Program, Musicology | Popular Music; Hip Hop; Empathy; Italian Studies; Music and Politics; Digital Humanities

Jeremy is a Ph.D. candidate in Music History and Literature at the University of Florida.

His research examines the interdisciplinary dimensions of popular music, particularly rap, and how contemporary artists use their platform to participate in critical discourses on identity and belonging. Jeremy is presently examining the Italian rapper Ghali and how his work portrays empathy, renegotiates cultural value, and uses referentiality in a digital age. Jeremy’s dissertation work takes empathy as its central focus, moving on to consider how rappers like Ghali confront violent and exclusionary sociopolitical forces in the present day. Twitter: @jfrusco

Heidi Jensen
PhD Program, Musicology | Metaethics and Aesthetics; Theories of Sense; Epistêmê and Technê; Intellectual History

She studies interrelations of music and philosophy, specifically theories of sense, representation, and expression.

I am interested in how music precedes, intercedes, and lingers, and how technologies may extend or merge with those resonances. Currently, I’m working with the music of Kurt Weill, exploring the intertwining of aesthetics, ethics, and technology. I am also engaged in a study of philosopher Michele Serres, focusing on his conceptualization of music. My past research was an intellectual history of Richard Wagner, conceived of as a liminal figure through the lens of ritual and myth construction. While at the University of Florida, I have been both an instructor and teaching assistant within the School of Music and have greatly enjoyed teaching consecutive summer posts for the university’s signature humanities course. I hold a dual MM in musicology and guitar performance from the University of New Mexico—where my thesis was awarded distinction and I was supported by the Brothwell Guitar Endowment. I also hold a BA in anthropology from the University of Rochester.

Dong Jin Shin
PhD Program, Musicology | East Asian Music and its Receptions in the West; Orientalism; Global Music History

Jin is writing her dissertation that reconsiders East Asian cultural and musical influence in early twentieth-century European music by challenging Orientalism.

Her research interests include music analysis, narratives in song cycle, Japonisme in French music, Stravinsky’s musical structure, Ravel’s imagination of Asia, Korean traditional music, globalization of K-pop, and identity of Asian composers—e.g. Isang Yun and Toshio Hosokawa. She received a bachelor’s degree in composition from Yonsei University (Seoul, South Korea) and master’s degrees in music theory from both Yonsei University and the University of North Texas. She has presented her research at conferences for musicology, ethnomusicology, music theory, and Asian studies. As a musician, she has worked as a church pianist, conductor, and music director, and published compositions in South Korea.

Cheyenne Johnson
MA Program, Ethnomusicology | Gender; Moral Panic; Popular Music; Fil; Rock ‘n’ Roll

Cheyenne is a first-year master’s student at the University of Florida pursuing a degree in ethnomusicology. She is a recent graduate from Winthrop University where she earned her Bachelor of Music in Saxophone Performance (May 2020). Her recent research interests have been centered around gender, glam rock, and other forms of popular music.

Abigail Lindo
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Portuguese Music; Jamaican Popular Music; Gender and Identity Formation; Community Music-Making

Abigail is a Jamaican-born, African American vocalist and ethnomusicologist in her second year of PhD studies at the University of Florida. 

Her research interests include Portuguese music, Jamaican popular music, gender and identity formation, and community music-making. A former music educator, Lindo taught instrumental and vocal music in Lee and Charlotte County, Florida for six years, simultaneously earning her Master in Music Education before coming to UF in Summer 2019 to begin her PhD. Her current dissertation topic deals with the Portuguese archipelago of the Azores and how festival culture has aided in the creation of a distinct musical identity in the region, considering notions of individuality, collective experience, and citizenship. She is a classically trained mezzo-soprano and enjoys writing songs in her downtime. 


Jeana Melilli
PhD Program, Musicology | European Instrumental Music

Jeana Melilli is a second-year PhD student in Musicology. Her current area of research centers around European instrumental music of the late 17th and early 18th centuries.

Jeana received her MM in flute performance from Northwestern University and her BM in flute performance from The Catholic University of America. She is also the Principal Flute of the Savannah Philharmonic, second flute in the Coastal Symphony of Georgia, and piccolo for the South Carolina Philharmonic and Greenville Symphony. As a baroque flutist, Jeana is a founding member of the Vista Ensemble in Columbia, SC and Savannah Baroque. Since the Pandemic began, Jeana has been trying to combine her performance experience and her musicological skills to make positive change in the repertoire and outreach of these and other organizations.

Jason Mullen
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Economic Ethnomusicology; Theories of Reciprocity and Exchange; Timbre and Popular Music

My work explores musical commodities at the intersection of market and non-market exchange.

I am particularly interested in the articulation of production and consumption, where sound and sonic registers are my guide. With fieldwork in factories, warehouses, and call centers, my research has focused on the fetishization of musical products. At the University of Florida, I am the instructor of the course Popular Music in America and the founding director of the Popular Music Ensemble—an ensemble open to all University of Florida students coming from any musical background. I am also a member of the Alachua Guitar Ensemble. I hold an MM in guitar performance from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and a BM from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.

Emily Theobald
PhD Program, Musicology | Memory; Mobility; Transnational Influence during the Cold War

I am a PhD candidate in musicology at University of Florida, where I also recently completed the Modern European Studies certificate at the Center for European Studies.

I completed my Master of Music in Flute Performance/Musicology from UF in 2016 and Bachelor of Music from University of Southern California in 2014. My research focuses on memory, musical mobility, and transnational influence during the Cold War, particularly between the United States and Poland, as well as the political responses and implications of Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki’s music. My dissertation explores a number of case studies including the American Wind Symphony Orchestra’s commissioning of several experimental European works during the Cold War period and the connection between the University of Illinois Experimental Music Studio and the Polish Radio Experimental Studio in Warsaw in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s. This work has brought me to archives in Warsaw, Gdansk, Krakow, University of Illinois, and University of Pittsburgh.

Holly Tumblin
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Latin American and Caribbean Music and Dance, Gender, Embodiment, Popular Music

Holly is an ethnomusicologist, dancer, and clarinetist from Lexington, KY. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at the University of Florida, where she focuses her research on Latin American and Caribbean music and dance genres, particularly within multicultural and diasporic communities.

Holly completed her Master’s in Musicology at the University of Tennessee in August 2020. Her thesis on bachata music and dance examines how aspects of gender, embodiment, and code switching challenge and perpetuate binary gender roles in bachata dance communities at selected sites in the southeastern United States. Her other research interests include gender, performativity, identity, national identity, and film music. An active musician, Holly also completed her Master’s in Clarinet Performance at UTK in 2019. Her performance activities and her ethnomusicological interests continue to shape and enrich one another.

Andrew Vogel
PhD Program, Ethnomusicology | Jazz; Popular Music; Vulgarity

Andrew is a saxophonist, educator, and researcher from St. Louis, Missouri. He is pursuing his PhD at the University of Florida. 

He received his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Studies, Music Technology from Webster University, and his Master of Arts in Jazz History and Research from Rutgers University where Andrew studied under Dr. Henry Martin and Dr. Lewis Porter. His Master’s thesis is titled, Angel Song: The Suite Life and Music of Kenny Wheeler.

Before coming to the University of Florida, Andrew taught courses at Rutgers University and Webster University. From 2015-2020, he worked with the Center for Jazz Studies at Columbia University contributing to J-DISC, the Center’s online jazz discography, and Dig That Lick: Analysing large-scale data for melodic patterns in jazz performances. His current research explores vulgarity in music.

Lindsay Watkins
MA Program, Musicology | Video Game Music; Fans and Fandoms; Affect

Lindsay is a second-year master’s student earning her degree in musicology at the University of Florida.

She received her Bachelor of Music in Music History from Bowling Green State University in 2019. She has written on a variety of topics including the music of the 2019 Hong Kong protests, video game concerts and musicking in the popular game Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Nintendo, 2020). Her current research focuses on video game music, fans and fandoms, and affect

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