Doctor of Philosophy in Musicology with Historical Emphasis

Application deadlines are specific to degree programs. See our Graduate Admissions page for a list of all deadlines.

Designed for students seeking the highest degree in the field, the Ph.D. is a rigorous five-year course of study culminating in a doctoral dissertation.


The initial three years of coursework (pre-candidacy) can be seen as exploring and expanding intellectual horizons on the path toward satisfying candidacy requirements, completing the special field exam (in ethnomusicology or historical musicology), and advancing to candidacy. Ethnomusicology and historical musicology students will complete the same three required courses as well as eight elective courses in the department.

Academic Eligibility

Applicants to the Doctor of Philosophy in Musicology with Historical Emphasis must have completed a bachelor’s of music degree or equivalent to be eligible for admission. In addition, applicants must have completed the following:

  • Twelve hours of music history
  • Twelve hours of music theory
  • A liberal arts sequence in addition to the foreign language and English requirements

Knowledge of foreign languages is indispensable for studying the history of music. Prospective students are expected to enter with training in one foreign language (preferably French or German) and must qualify in that language at the end of the first year in residence.


Mark Clague

Interim Executive Director, U-M Arts Initiative; Professor of Music; Director of U-M Gershwin Initiative; Co-Editor-in-Chief MUSA

Gabriela Cruz

Chair of Musicology and Associate Professor of Music

Dissertations produced by PhD candidates in Historical Musicology

Kristen Clough, “Opera in Crisis? Revealing the Cultural and Political Impact of French Fourth Republic Opera, 1945-1958”

Jessica Grimmer, “Political Battlefields in French Musical Education: Provincial Conservatories under the Nazi Occupation and Vichy Regime”

Patricia Prokert, “Interpreting Race and Difference in the Operas of Richard Strauss”

Anne Heminger, “Confession Carried Aloft: Music, Religious Identity, and Sacred Space in London, c. 1540-1560”

Austin Stewart, “The Opera is Booming. This is a City.: Opera in the Urban Frontier of Denver, 1864-1893”

Kathryn Cox, “‘What Happened to the Post-War Dream?’: Nostalgia, Trauma, and Affect in British Rock of the 1960s and 1970s”

Sarah Suhadolnik, “Navigating Jazz: Music, Place, and New Orleans”

Leah Weinberg “Opera behind the Myth: An Archival Examination of Einstein on the Beach”

Jessica Getman, “Music, Race, and Gender in the Original Series of Star Trek (1966-69)”

Sarah Gerk, “Far Away O’er the Ocean Go Journeymen, Cowboys, and Fiddlers: The Irish in Nineteenth-Century American Music”

Daniel Blim, “Patchwork Nation: Collage, Music, and American Identity”

Alison DeSimone, “The Myth of the Diva: Female Opera Singers and Collaborative Performance in Early Eighteenth-Century London”

Nicholas Field, “Outlandish Authors: Innocenzo Fede and Musical Patronage at the Stuart Court in London and in Exile”

Rebecca Fulop, “Heroes, Dames, and Damsels in Distress: Constructing Gender Types in Classical Hollywood Film Music”

Michael Mauskapf, “Enduring Crisis, Ensuring Survival: Artistry, Economics, and the American Symphony Orchestra”

Scott Southard, “Focalization and Masculine Subjectivity in the Early Operas of Benjamin Britten”

Shinobu Yoshida, “Modeling Heroines in Giacomo Puccini’s Operas”

Timothy Freeze, “Gustav Mahler’s Third Symphony: Program, Reception, and Evocations of the Popular”

Nathan Platte, “Musical Collaboration in the Films of David O. Selznick, 1932–1957”

Laura Kennedy, “Symphonies nos. 8 and 10 by Dmitri Shostakovich: A Study of Sketches and Drafts”

Rebecca Schwartz-Bishir, “‘Musique Dansante’ and the Art of Ballet”

Christopher Scheer, “Fin-de-siecle Britain: Imperialism and Wagner in the Music of Gustav Holst”

Eric Saylor, “The Significance of Nation in the Music of Ralph Vaughan Williams”

Amanda Eubanks, “Gender and Genre: Musical Conventions on the English Stage, 1660-1705”

Mark Katz, “The phonograph Effect: The Influence of Recording on Listener, Performer, Composer, 1900-1940”