ROCHESTER, NY — On the heels of completing his Ph.D. in music theory at the Eastman School of Music, William M. Marvin has been appointed assistant professor of theory at his alma mater.
Dr. Marvin’s work in theory has included a Schenkerian approach to tonality in Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg, examining tonal design and structural levels in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, aural training through atonal music, and the distinction between and pedagogical implications of music reading and aural skills. A number of these papers were presented at the Music Theory Midwest Conference in the late 1990’s. His review of a current textbook on rhythm reading appeared on Music Theory Online, the electronic journal of the Society for Music Theory. Looking ahead, Dr. Marvin will be delivering a paper on the quodlibet as a compositional strategy in Broadway musicals at the November 2002 meeting of the Society for Music Theory.
Dr. Marvin (no relation to Dean of Academic Affairs, Elizabeth West Marvin) returns to Eastman after having taught music theory and aural skills at Oberlin College Conservatory of Music since 1996. Prior to that he was a teaching assistant at Eastman while working on his master’s degree, and received both the Edward Peck Curtis Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Student (1992), and the Outstanding Graduate Teaching Prize (1990).
His work in aural skills has taken him into the unusual realm of teaching aural skills — without notation — to blind music students. From 1997 through 1999, he worked individually with blind students teaching aural skills and overseeing the teaching of a composition by a blind student composer to a group of 12 student performers.
In addition, while at Oberlin, he coached both chamber music and a jazz a cappella vocal group.