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Society for Ethnomusicology, Inc. (Bloomington, IN 47405-3657)
Stephen Stuempfle (Project Director: May 2020 to present)
Musicians in America during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Three new full-time positions to research the impact of COVID-19 and the 2020 stay-at-home orders on professional music making in the United States.

The Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM) will hire three ethnomusicologists for twelve weeks to research the impact of COVID-19 and stay-at-home orders on music-making throughout the United States. Through online video interviews with a cross-section of musicians associated with diverse communities and music genres, the researchers will document what it is like to live in a society almost devoid of music-making in public space. What are the consequences of this sudden transformation for human sociability, communication, inspiration, and well-being, as well as for the artistry, careers, and economic livelihood of musicians? How are musicians engaging in alternative modes of music-making, such as organizing virtual performances via the Internet? SEM will use edited versions of the interviews and an accompanying interpretive text to create a publicly accessible online video archive that documents the lives of musicians in this time of crisis.

Project fields:
American Studies; Music History and Criticism

Cooperative Agreements and Special Projects (Research)

Research Programs

$74,488 (approved)
$74,488 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/15/2020 – 12/31/2021