ROCHESTER, NY — Prominent American musicologist Philip Gossett — whose multiple interests lie in 15th-century sacred music, 19th-century Italian opera, sketch studies, aesthetics, textual criticism and performance practice — will pay a special visit to the Eastman School of Music this month. In addition to giving an opera master class on how to embellish the vocal lines in Rossini’s opera The Turk in Italy (which will be performed at Eastman October 31-November 3) at 3:30 p.m., Wednesday, October 9, in Annex 804 (26 Gibbs St.), he will present a musicology symposium lecture titled La vendetta di Gustavo in maschera: Reconstructing the Original Version of Verdi’s ‘Un ballo in Marchera’ at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, October 10, in the Ciminelli Lounge of the Eastman Student Living Center (100 Gibbs St.). Both events, sponsored by the Rochester-area chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa Association and the Eastman Musicology department are free and open to the public.
Gossett is the Robert W. Reneker Distinguished Service Professor of Music at the University of Chicago, which also recognized him with the Quantrell Award for excellence in undergraduate teaching. Author of the books ‘Anna Bolena’ and the Maturity of Gaetano Donizetti (which received the Deems Taylor award from ASCAP) and Divas and Scholars: Performing Italian Opera, Gossett also is the general editor of two series of scholarly editions: The Works of Giuseppe Verdi and Edizione critica delle opere di Gioachino Rossini (The Critical Edition of the Works of Rossini).
Gossett has served as president of the American Musicological Society, where he received its Alfred Einstein Award, and also of the Society for Textual Scholarship; for ten years, he served as dean of humanities at the University of Chicago, where he has taught since 1968. In 1998, the President of Italy decorated him with the Cavaliere di Gran Croce, Italy’s highest civilian honor.
Since receiving his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1970, Gossett has been a visiting professor at the Universities of Paris, Parma, Rome, and at Oxford University. Other activities have included working closely with renowned opera companies such as the Metropolitan Opera of New York, the Chicago Lyric Opera, and the Teatro alla Scala of Milan. He was the musicological consultant to the Verdi Festival in Parma during the Verdi centennial year in 2001 and has coached major singers in Rossini roles, including world-renowned soprano Renée Fleming, who holds a master’s degree from Eastman.