Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Benjamin Binder

benjamin binderThe Pittsburgh Song Collaborative, now in residence at the Mary Pappert School of Music at Duquesne University, is under the artistic direction of Dr. Benjamin Binder. Binder, along with other members of the Song Collaborative, typically present 1-2 art song concerts on campus during each school year. Additionally, other innovative song recitals are performed throughout the Pittsburgh area and beyond, including collaborations with the Carnegie Museum of Art and the Andy Warhol Museum.

On February 20, Dr. Binder, who is Chair of Musicianship and Associate Professor of Music at Duquesne, and fellow School of Music voice faculty member Sari Gruber, will present Songs Remembered and Forgotten. This concert will include some of their favorite songs from almost 20 years of collaboration, as well as a few songs they've never performed in concert before. Works featured will include music composed by Debussy, Grieg, Rachmaninoff, Barber, Ives, Bolcom, and Strauss.

Benjamin Binder joined the musicianship faculty of the Mary Pappert School of Music in the fall of 2008, after holding a two-year teaching position at Lawrence University in Appleton, WI. At Duquesne, Dr. Binder teaches musicology and music history at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He is also a collaborative pianist, and he believes passionately in the close connection between scholarship and performance, a connection which he actively pursues in his own professional life and encourages his students to explore in his courses.

Dr. Binder holds a master's degree in piano performance from Washington University and a Ph.D. in musicology from Princeton University. His work on German Romantic music and the German Lied has been published in Nineteenth-Century Music Review, Journal of the American Musicological Society, Current Musicology, and the volume Rethinking Schubert (forthcoming from Oxford University Press). He has presented papers at regional, national, and international scholarly conferences, including meetings of the American Musicological Society, the Society for Music Theory, the Phenomenon of Singing International Symposium, the Biennial International Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music, and the Biennial North American Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music. He has also written a script for Thomas Hampson's Song: Mirror of the World public radio series which has been broadcasted nationwide on the WFMT Radio Network. In general, his scholarly and teaching interests include European music and culture of the long nineteenth century, German Romanticism, the German Lied, the intersection of criticism, analysis, and performance, interdisciplinary performance studies, and creative forms of audience engagement and concert innovation in classical music.

As a pianist, Dr. Binder has been a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center and a participant in the Cleveland Institute of Music Art Song Festival. He has accompanied vocal and instrumental recitals throughout North America.

Dr. Binder is also the director and co-founder of the Vancouver International Song Institute's Song Scholarship and Performance program .


Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and horizon-expanding education. A campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, Duquesne prepares students by having them work alongside faculty to discover and reach their goals. The University's academic programs, community service, and commitment to equity and opportunity in the Pittsburgh region have earned national acclaim. 

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