Robert Haskins, Associate Professor of Musicology and Graduate Program Coordinator in the Department of Music at the University of New Hampshire, will deliver the last of the John Cage Centennial Lectures of the Eastman School of Music on Thursday, April 18. Titled “John Cage and Zen: What Did He Know, When Did He Know It, How We Find Out, and Why We Should Care,” the lecture will be held in Room 514 of the Eastman School beginning at 4:30 p.m., and is presented under the auspices of the Eastman Musicology Symposium.
Haskins pursued his graduate studies at Eastman, where he received a Master of Arts degree in musicology in 1996, his DMA in performance and literature and performer’s certificate (harpsichord) in 1997, and his Ph.D. in musicology in 2004. His research concerns American music in the second half of the 20th century. In 2012, he presented papers on Cage (including performances of his work) in Germany, Canada, and the United States. His most recent book is John Cage (London: Reaktion Books, 2012).
In addition to his work as a musicologist, Haskins performs as a text works performer, pianist, and harpsichordist. He has recorded for Mode Records and served as musical director for Alarm Will Sound’s 2012 new production of John Cage’s Song Books at the Holland Festival Abrons and River to River Festivals (New York). Between 1985 and 1993, he was active as a composer/performer and appeared principally as a member of the synthesizer ensemble Industrial Arts (which he co-founded with composers Scott Pender and Thom Robinson).
John Cage was among most influential and innovative composers and musical thinkers of the 20th-century. This year is Cage’s Centennial year, and his life and work is being celebrated throughout America and in Europe in concerts, festivals, and colloquia. Eastman’s Cage Centennial Lecture Series focuses on aspects of the scholarly reception of Cage—how his music and words have enriched and changed the thinking and understanding of aesthetics in general, and music in particular.
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