Lecture by Huib Schippers
UCLA Regents’ Professor for Fall 2022
It is tempting to think that the best music will survive, as it will be supported by audiences, funding bodies, and public authorities. But the realities of music vitality and sustainability worldwide as we can observe it are infinitely more complex and fascinating. In this lecture, UCLA Regents’ Professor Huib Schippers will explore the concept of cultural ecosystems: the idea that a complex of—mostly non-musical—forces determines the sustainability of any music practice, whether fringe or mainstream, from West or East, community-based or widely mediated, despised by many or loved by all. In doing so, he presents some striking insights into the resilience of music practices as far apart as European opera and Australian Indigenous songs, Ghanaian Ewe drum-dance and Indian classical music, Vietnamese ca tru and Balinese gamelan, and both praises and critiques the influential 2003 UNESCO Convention on the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage as it pertains to music.
Huib Schippers is a UCLA Regents’ Professor for the Fall Quarter 2022. He has a background in Indian classical music (sitar), music journalism, the record trade, music education, festival direction, research policy and leadership, and applied ethnomusicology. He was instrumental in setting up public world music schools in The Netherlands (1990-1997), founded the World Music and Dance Centre in Rotterdam (1998-2003), directed the innovative Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre in Brisbane, Australia (2003-2015), and curated and directed the iconic record label Smithsonian Folkways (2016-2020). His most important publications (with Oxford University Press) include Facing the Music (2010); Sustainable Future for Music Cultures (2016); and Music, Communities, Sustainability (2022).
This event is part of Dr. Schippers' residency at UCLA as a University of California Regents’ Professor.