Neumann Lecture Series

The University of Richmond Department of Music invites one distinguished music scholar each year to address the university, the Greater Richmond area and the scholarly communities, and to spend time with its students. The Neumann Lectures offer a further opportunity to expand the vision of the University of Richmond as a locus for serious dialogue about music, the arts, and society.


Born in Bielitz, Austro-Hungary, Frederick "Fritz" Neumann studied the violin from early childhood. Following the completion of his Ph.D. from the University of Berlin and a brief career as an export-market analyst in Prague, he returned to the study of the violin and became a United States citizen in 1943. By 1952, he completed an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Music Education at Columbia University.
Appointed to the music faculty of the University of Richmond in 1955, Fritz taught violin, founded the University Symphony, and was concertmaster of the Richmond Symphony. He retired from the University in 1978.

From the mid 1960s, Fritz occupied himself principally with the research of authentic performance practice, particularly of the 17th and 18th centuries, a career that was furthered by grants from the American Philosophical Society, the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The American Musicological Society presented him with the prestigious Otto Kinkeldey Award in 1987 for the volume Ornamentation and Improvisation in Mozart.

2022-2023 Lecture

Huib Schippers
"Sounds, communities, and cultural ecosystems: Making more sense of our sonic environments"

More people have more access to more musical sounds than ever before in the history of humankind. Factors like travel, recording, amplification, and the internet have transformed our sonic landscapes over the past 100 years or so. However, not all musical expressions are created, performed, promoted, transmitted, valued, and paid for equally and equitably.

This lecture explores how forces continue to shape our sonic environment. How each of these forces can be benign or obstructive, and how the cultural ecosystems framework can help understand specific music practices, whether they are globally connected, more localized, or even isolated.

Huib Schippers has a broad musical, professional and intellectual background. He has developed careers in Indian classical music performance (sitar), music journalism, the record trade, music education, festival direction, research policy, and leadership. Most recently he curated and directed the iconic record label Smithsonian Folkways and was UCLA Regents’ Professor in ethnomusicology.

September 19, 2023, 7:30 p.m., Perkinson Recital Hall, North Court

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  • Past Lectures

    2023 Sherry D. Lee, Trinity College

    2022 Robynn Stilwell, Georgetown University

    2020 Tammy Kernodle, Miami University of Ohio

    2019 Guthrie Ramsey, University of Pennsylvania

    2018 George Lipsitz, University of California-Santa Barbara

    2017 Deborah Wong, University of California-Davis

    2016 J. Peter Burkholder, Indiana University-Bloomington

    2015 Jessie Ann Owens, University of California-Davis

    2014 Anthony Seeger, University of California-Los Angeles

    2013 Craig Wright, Yale University

    2012 Joseph Flummerfelt, Westminster Choir College

    2011 Lei Liang, University of California-San Diego

    2010 Oliver Sachs (cancelled)

    2009 Roger Parker, King’s College-London

    2008 Suzanne Cusick, New York University

    2007 Guthrie Ramsey, University of Pennsylvania

    2006 Nicholas Till, University of Sussex

    2005 Kay Kaufmann Shelemay, Harvard University

    2004 Susan McClary, University of California-Los Angeles

    2003 Christoph Wolff, Harvard University