There's nothing quite like the act and practice of teaching.
I am honored and excited to announce that this summer I've been selected by my department to teach my first stand alone course called "Music of New York."
The course is a six week intensive that meets Monday through Thursday for two hours each day. Half of my students are international students in their 3rd or 4th year in high school and the other half are seniors about to graduate from NYU.
The amount of stamina required for this course is incredible. The course is a challenge to teach, to put it mildly. I am deeply grateful for this experience and have learned so much from doing my best to show up as "instructor" or as some of my students refer to me as, "professor."
We've had such an immense journey!
Some of the things we've done: We've read Adorno's seminal text "On Popular Music" and discussed the music of Tin Pan Alley, listened to Langston Hughes read his poem The Weary Blues accompanied by a Harlem Jazz ensemble, we've read the novel Just Kids by Patti Smith and then walked through Greenwhich Village and wrote a collaborative poem, we did a close listening of the song "America" from the musical West Side Story and discussed the destruction of San Juan Hill to create Lincoln Center, we experienced a Sound Bath as an immersive introduction to a current sonic culture in NYC, created our own Graphic Scores after learning about experimental music in the Downtown scene, learned about the beginning of the study of acoustics and its impact on architecture through the construction of Rockefeller Center and Radio City Music Hall, went on a variety of Sound Walks, and visited the exhibition The Moon Represents My Heart: Music, Memory, and Belonging at the Museum of Chinese in America and learned about Chinese and American Chinese composers and musicians in NYC.
In our final week we will focus on the writing process. From paper topic, to paper abstract, to first draft, to final draft we will discuss the terms "thesis statement," "argument," and "evidence," and conduct peer to peer paper editing.
This week is my last week teaching and I am looking forward to taking a break! This "break" will allow me time and space to continue working on my dissertation. I am on track to finish my first chapter by the end of September. I'll discuss this more in my next post.
I'm still looking for adequate part time work which is trickling in so I'm hoping to find a stable position in the upcoming weeks.
Some exciting news: my colleague and I have put together a panel and have been invited to present at the annual American Studies Association annual meeting in Honolulu, Hawai'i in November. ASA's theme this year is "Build as we fight" and we've chosen to call our panel "Cultivating Sonic Practice as Political Praxis."
I will write about the topic of my paper that I will be presenting in my next post.
This summer has been a lot! No wonder I'm a little tired. :0)