My period as a visiting scholar at UCLA came to an end last month. I am very grateful to Olivia Bloechl and Robert Fink for kindly hosting me at the Department of Musicology. I learned a lot from the many fine musicologists at UCLA, faculty, visiting professors, and graduate students alike. Thank you to to Olivia for weekly conversations about our shared research interests, and especially for the gentle prodding on Foucault and the tricky questions which I wrote about in a previous post (still thinking them over!), as well as our discussions about academia more generally; to Elizabeth U for the conversations on the history of historically informed early music performance; and to Mitchell and Ray for stimulating conversations, summer movies and parties, an introduction to some great music, including that Dolly Parton song that still brings a tear to my eye, and indeed to some fearfully awesome music. Mindy LaTour O’Brien provided invaluable bibliographic assistance, introduced me to Sente, and told me of her fascinating work using court records. I’m sorry to have repaid those kindnesses with delegating possibly one of the most infuriating music editing tasks ever. On the plus side, I have some music to send to your sight-reading-from-partbooks ensemble. And my thanks, too, to Barbara Van Nostrand for helping me with the finer details of Getting Bureacratic Stuff Done, laughter over lunch, obscure museums, tart frozen yoghurt and In-n-Out grilled cheese!
I also wish to thank the UCLA Library Special Collections team for their invaluable assistance and advice, as well as patient processing of what must have seemed like a never-ending stream of duplication requests. The Orsini Collection is really special, and I hope to make further visits in future.
On the admin side of things, I’d like to thank the team at the Dashew Center for International Students and Scholars and the Humanities administrators who processed my visa, my affiliation, and my expenses, and the OCGA team who are still handling the fellowship paperwork. I had no idea how much paperwork would be involved in all of this, and I thank you all for your good humour, and for smoothing the way for my research.
Although I’m sad to say goodbye to my UCLA friends, I know that I will be seeing many of you again in New York, at future AMS meetings, and perhaps I can persuade some of you to Cork!
I have now started an eighteen-month position as a visiting scholar at New York University. If I enjoy my stay at NYU even just half as much as I enjoyed my time at UCLA, I will count myself very lucky indeed. The signs so far are excellent!