Faculty: Theory of Music
Jairo Moreno’s work addresses the production of knowledge of music and the sonic in modernity. He has written a major study of the history of listening in early modern and modern music theory and analysis, Musical Representations, Subjects, and Objects: The Construction of Musical Thought in Zarlino, Descartes, Rameau, and Weber (Indiana University Press, 2004). He has also published on jazz performance poetics, the politics of aesthesis, and Latin-American popular music in the U.S during the long 20 th century. His current project is entitled Syncopated Modernities: Musical Latin Americanisms in the U.S., 1978-2008 , an archival, critical, and ethnographic study of music’s precarious share in political practices during late capitalism. Moreno received the Society for American Music 2005 Irving Lowens Article Award for Best Article (“Bauzá-Gillespie-Latin Jazz: Difference, Modernity, and the Black Caribbean,” The South Atlantic Quarterly, 2004). Other scholarly awards include a Whiting Fellow in the Humanities at Yale, and an ACLS Fellowship (2009-2010). He received the David and Janet Brooks Distinguished Teaching Award (Duke) and the Golden Dozen Teaching Award (NYU). A former professional bassist, he received five Grammy Award nominations for recordings with the late Latin and Jazz percussionist Ray Barretto (Blue Note, EMI-France, Concord, Fania labels – 1989-1997), appeared in numerous other recordings, and performed chamber music with guitarist David Starobin and the Ciompi String Quartet.
King's College, London 2009
Naomi Waltham-Smith’s research sits at the intersection of music theory and Continental philosophy. She is interested in how the critical resources of recent French and Italian thought might be deployed to interrogate the ethical significance of the processes and structures of music and listening. In particular her work analyses encounters with music’s sounding materiality. Attempting to address both the experience of listening and the ways in which music might stage its own encounter with its aurality, she has published and presented on subversive constructions of space in listening to recorded sound, on the musical moment as an exposure of sonic materiality, on Voice as an instance of impotentiality that destabilizes the distinction between sound and sense, and on the inscription of the temporality of listening within music’s unfolding. She has also written on the structural negativity of the Classical style, on the problem of repetition and on the sound of potentiality in the new Formenlehre. In approaching these questions, she has engaged with the thought of Aristotle, Heidegger, Agamben, Badiou, Deleuze, Derrida, and Nancy among others.
She has nurtured these interests in England, Germany and, more recently, in the US. A graduate of Selwyn College, Cambridge, she spent a year as a DAAD Research Scholar at the Ruprecht-Karls-Universität in Heidelberg before embarking upon a Master’s and PhD at King’s College London. After completing her thesis on “Adorno’s Augenblick and the Ethics of Late Beethoven,” she held post-doctoral positions at City University in London and Indiana University in Bloomington.