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May 3 2022

Nostalgia and European Music Histories

Nostalgia, Music and Music Studies Conference

The Nostalgia, Music and Music Studies conference series aims to bring nostalgia studies more broadly into conversation with music and music studies. As a theoretical framework, nostalgia studies allow us to explore attitudes towards the past underlying both musicology and music composition/performance. It illuminates the ways nostalgia is used by creators and audiences, as well as the ways it affects and influences our perceptions of history, heritage, self and others. Guided by the work of Svetlana Boym and others on nostalgia types (restorative vs reflective, individual vs. collective memory), this conference aims to bring scholars and artists together to deepen our understanding of nostalgia’s powerful presence in music and music-making.


  • Jennifer Saltzstein, “Land, Loss, and Medieval Chivalric Yearning in "Quant voi la glaie" by Raoul de Soissons”
  • Marie Sumner Lott, “Hearing the Middle Ages and Longing for the Past: Medievalism in the Romanzen und  Balladen of Robert Schumann”
  • Demetrius Shahmehri, “Nostalgia and Play in Robert Schumann’s Kinderszenen
  • Emily Laurance, “At the Nexus of Timbre and Nostalgia: the Eighteenth-Century Pedal Harp in France”

Moderator: Elizabeth Upton

This program is made possible by the Joyce S. and Robert U. Nelson Fund. Robert Uriel Nelson was a revered musicologist and music professor at UCLA, who, together with his wife, established a generous endowment for the university to make programs like this possible.

Register in advance for this event. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the event.