Draft:Ethnomusicology at UCLA

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  • Symbol opinion vote.svg Comment: Is this about the major / department or the particular institute? Either way, it is already covered extensively in UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music If the School of Music still offers the Ethnomusicology degrees, it should be grouped in there. AngusWOOF (barksniff) 20:14, 5 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Symbol opinion vote.svg Comment: This is completely lacking in third-party reliable sources. Please fix. Bradv🍁 19:47, 5 December 2018 (UTC)


Department of Ethnnomusicology, UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music
Parent institution
Endowment$30 million dollars
DeanJudith Smith
Academic staff
Los Angeles

34.066792°N 118.443491°W

The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, Department of Ethnomusicology grew out of the former Institute of Ethnomusicology, established by Mantle Hood at UCLA in 1960. From 1961 to 1989 Ethnomusicology was a program within the Department of Music, which was then a part of the College of Fine Arts. In 1989 it became an independent department, called the Department of Ethnomusicology and Systematic Musicology, part of the School of the Arts. In 1995 it was renamed the Department of Ethnomusicology.

In 2007 ethnomusicology became one of three departments, with music and musicology, to comprise The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. This school was named with a $30 million endowment gift made possible by the The Herb Alpert Foundation.[1]The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, with Timothy Rice as the founding dean, facilitated a new cooperation between the departments of ethnomusicology, music, and musicology, while also allowing the departments to remain autonomous and continue their academic and performance curriculums. At that time, the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music was a "virtual" school, with the departments of ethnomusicology and music remaining within the School of the Arts and Architecture and the department of musicology remaining within the College of Letters and Science.[2]

On January 21, 2016, the University of California Regents voted to formally establish the UCLA Herb Alpert  School of Music, the first school of music in the UC system.[3] UCLA’s proposal to transfer the ethnomusicology and music departments from the School of the Arts and Architecture and the musicology department from the College’s Division of Humanities to the School of Music received extensive input from students, faculty and staff. Campus officials named Judi Smith (Dean and vice provost emerita of the UCLA College) as interim dean.[4]

50 Years of Ethnomusicology[edit]

During the 2010-2011 academic year, The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, Department of Ethnomusicology celebrated 50 years of ethnomusicology at UCLA through a variety of activities, including symposia, concerts, and exhibitions.[4]

Before 1960 – Pre-Institute years

Although the Department of Music was formed in 1919 with the establishment of the Southern Branch of the University of California, the Music Department did not begin offering degrees until 1939, three years after composer Arnold Schoenberg joined the faculty. Initially, the Department placed emphasis on music education. Courses on American music, folk music (i.e. world music), aesthetics, and acoustics did not become permanent offerings until the 1940s and 1950s. Laurence Petran, who was hired as the university organist, played a major role in creating and teaching courses on folk music and acoustics. While Petran laid the foundation for the academic study of both ethnomusicology and systematic musicology, Mantle Hood (when he arrived in 1954) was responsible for enhancing the program by making courses in world music performance[5], culture area studies, and ethnomusicology theory and method integral components of UCLA's Music Department curriculum.[6]

1960-74 -- Institute of Ethnomusicology, Department of Music

In 1959, Mantle Hood and Boris Kremenliev wrote a proposal for the establishment of the Institute of Ethnomusicology, which came into existence in 1960. By 1964, the Institute contained an archive, several world music performance ensembles, a publications program, a large collection of world music instruments, and a laboratory for the scientific study of world music. World-renowned scholars and master musicians from different parts of the world joined the Music Department faculty.[7]

1974-89 -- Program in Ethnomusicology, Department of Music

The Institute was disestablished and Mantle Hood retired in 1974. However, the study of ethnomusicology and systematic musicology continued as a Program in the Music Department, and new roster faculty were hired.

1989-07 -- Department of Ethnomusicology and Systematic Musicology (renamed Department of Ethnomusicology in 1996)

Through the efforts of Nazir Jairazbhoy and other faculty, the Program in Ethnomusicology was granted Department status in 1989[8]. Establishment of the Department of Ethnomusicology and Systematic Musicology led to the offering of a one-year series of courses in world music theory and musicianship, a B.A. degree in ethnomusicology, an undergraduate concentration in jazz studies, with Kenny Burrell as Director of Jazz Studies, and the hiring of several new faculty members. In addition to course offerings, the Department enriched the learning environment by organizing concerts, symposia, and conferences; residences for guest lecturers and concert artists; and outreach programs in partnership with the local community.[9]

2007-present – The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, Department of Ethnomusicology

The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music was formed in November 2007 with a $30 million endowment gift from the renowned performer, producer, and philanthropist Herb Alpert and his wife Lani Hall Alpert. The School of Music was formed to promote the performance and study of music in all its global diversity, including art music, jazz, popular music, and world music. To enhance this philosophy, the Departments of Ethnomusicology, Music, and Musicology have aligned, thereby enabling the students to augment their academic studies with courses in music business, music in the public sector, and music and health. In turn, this balanced approach to performance, scholarship, and practical knowledge represents a significant departure from the study of history, theory, and performance of European classical music as taught in most colleges and universities in the United States.

The establishment of the Herb Alpert School of Music has not changed Ethnomusicology as an independent, distinct, and autonomous departmental unit. Similar to past years, it continues to move forward as the UCLA Department of Ethnomusicology.[10]


The department offers B.A., M.A. and Ph.D degrees in ethnomusicology.

UCLA has granted more Ph.D and M.A. degrees in ethnomusicology than any other university in the world. From 1958 through June 2011, UCLA Ethnomusicology has awarded 422 graduate degrees (234 M.A., 188 Ph.D.) and 325 undergraduate degrees.[11] Graduates in ethnomusicology from UCLA have founded many of the most important ethnomusicology graduate programs in the United States, including those at the University of Michigan, University of Washington, Brown University, Wesleyan University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Florida State University, and UC Berkeley.

The specialization in systematic musicology is currently the only one of its kind in the United States.

In 1991 the department established a full undergraduate curriculum in ethnomusicology. In 1996 Jazz Studies was instituted as a concentration within the undergraduate major, as directed by guitarist Kenny Burrell. Beginning in fall 2018, the School of Music established a bachelor of arts degree in global jazz studies as part of the department of music. The degree provides students with a cross-disciplinary education, drawing from various areas within the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music, as well as the African American studies department.[12]


The World Music Collection[edit]

The World Music Instrument Collection occupies approximately 3700 square feet in UCLA’s Schoenberg Music Building. The core collection is housed in the Gamelan Room, the China Room, the Korea/Japan Room, and the India/Near East Room.

With a $39,000 Rockefeller Foundation grant in 1958, Mantle Hood acquired the first set of instruments from Java, Thailand, Japan, and Sunda, as well as reference materials and equipment for the new ethnomusicology program. This established the ethnomusicology performance program. I Wayan Gandra and Tjokorda Mas from Indonesia in 1960, and in 1961, Suenobu Togi from Japan, and Tanjore Viswanathan and Harihar Rao from India, were the first world music professors. In the last fifty years, twenty-six ensembles that study and perform music from cultures around the world, including jazz, have been established at UCLA.[13]

Center for Latin American Arts[edit]

The UCLA Center for Latino Arts focuses on Latino visual and performing arts. Reflecting the diversity of Latinx American cultures, the center promotes intercultural understanding and positive interchange and learning. Programs include: Art Exhibits, Performing Arts Events, Academic and Public Symposia, Educational Outreach, Research and Publications, and Curricular Development.[14]

Ethnomusicology Archive[edit]

Established in 1961, the UCLA Ethnomusicology Archive is a research archive dedicated to the study of musical traditions from around the globe. The Archive’s collection of more than 150,000 audio, video, print, and photographic items documents musical expressions throughout the world and includes field recordings as well as rare commercial recordings.[15]

The Archive preserves over 50 years worth of audio and video recordings of the department’s concerts and also of lectures by visiting scholars and performers, including Mantle Hood, Ravi Shankar and Nati Cano. In addition to preservation and access, the Archive offers a wide range of research, outreach, and educational services[16].[17]


Currently, the department of ethnomusicology sponsors 17 student-performance ensembles. These include:

Notable Faculty[edit]


  1. ^ "UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". Herb Alpert Foundation. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  2. ^ "SEM Annual Conference - Welcome". www.indiana.edu. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  3. ^ Hampton, Phil; UCLA (2015-08-05). "UCLA moves to establish independent Herb Alpert School of Music". University of California. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  4. ^ a b Johnson, Donna. "History of the Department". archive.ethnomusic.ucla.edu. Archived from the original on |archive-url= requires |archive-date= (help).
  5. ^ Revitt, Paul J. "The Institute of Ethnomusicology at U.C.L.A. - College Music Symposium". symposium.music.org. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  6. ^ "Mantle Hood, 87, dies". www.international.ucla.edu. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  7. ^ Munk, Donna Armstrong and Shilo. "UCLA Department of Ethnomusicology continues 50th anniversary celebration with fall events". UCLA Newsroom. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  8. ^ "University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) - Society for Ethnomusicology". www.ethnomusicology.org. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  9. ^ "Spring Festival of World Music and Jazz kicks off the ethnomusicology department's yearlong celebration of its 50th anniversary". dailybruin.com. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  10. ^ DjeDje, Jacqueline Cogdell DjeDje (January 2010). "History Summary". Ethnomusicology UCLA. Archived from the original on January 1, 2010. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  11. ^ Conner, Ron (December 5, 2011). "History of Ethnomusicology at UCLA". School of Music Archive- Ethnomusicology. Archived from the original on October 26, 2018. Retrieved November 26, 2018.
  12. ^ "Just announced! New bachelor's degree offered in global jazz studies - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. 2018-08-21. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  13. ^ "World Music Instrument Collection - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  14. ^ "Center for Latino Arts - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  15. ^ "University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) - Society for Ethnomusicology". www.ethnomusicology.org. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  16. ^ "Calisphere: UCLA / Ethnomusicology Archive". Calisphere. Retrieved 2018-12-05.
  17. ^ "Ethnomusicology Archive - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  18. ^ "Ensembles - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  19. ^ "Faculty - The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music". The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music. Retrieved 2018-11-26.