Elizabeth Durrant (co-chair)
Collin Elizabeth Durrant is a singer and a musicologist who explores the connections between music, literature, character, and Black feminism. She received an M.A. in Musicology from the University of North Texas, and her master’s thesis is titled “Chicago Renaissance Women: Black Feminism in the Careers and Songs of Florence Price and Margaret Bonds.” Elizabeth is pursuing a combined PhD in African American Studies and Music. She is excited to continue exploring her interests in Black and women composers, Black feminism, twentieth-century neoromantic music, and American song.
Collin Edouard (co-chair)
Collin Edouard (He/Him) is a first year ethnomusicology student focusing on music from the Caribbean Islands. Collin is a choir director and music teacher with extensive experience in primary/secondary education. He has invested time in the theoretical and practical study of choral conducting at the University of Cambridge, music and music education at Teachers College Columbia University, and vocal performance at The City College of New York. Collin travels to countries such as Turkey and Uganda in the hopes to expand access to music education and, in particular, with music less frequently circulated in the Western Canon.
Aditya Chander is a PhD student in Music Theory. Prior to joining Yale, he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of Cambridge (2017), graduating with a First Class degree with Distinction. His final Analysis Portfolio explored two-dimensional sonata form in Respighi’s Quartetto Dorico, and the value of neo-Riemannian theory in explaining transition passages in Chausson’s Poème. He also hold a Masters degree from Stanford University in Music, Science, and Technology (2019). At Stanford, he taught introductory computer science, and worked in the Neuromusic Lab at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics, where his research examined the neural correlates of piano duet improvisation using EEG, and violinists’ expressive gesture profiles using motion capture technology. He has presented at the Society for Music Perception and Cognition (2019).
Aditya’s primary research interests include the embodiment of musical structure, and the perception of familiar melodic schemata in galant music. When he is not busy gelling subjects’ scalps for EEG experiments or taping reflective markers to performers for motion capture experiments, Aditya is an avid violinist. He was a winner of the Cambridge University Symphony Orchestra concerto competition in 2015, and the Stanford Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition in 2018. He is also a principal violinist in the Yale Symphony Orchestra.
Allison Chu is a music scholar, educator, and Ph.D. candidate in Music History at Yale University. Her primary research areas include American opera in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, contemporary classical music, and representations of identity on and off the stage. Her dissertation project, titled “Documentary Opera: Archives, Identity, and Politics in Contemporary American Opera,” traces the growing trend of American documentary operas written in the last twenty years, exploring the intersection between different media of documentary source materials and the identities the materials represent. Intersecting opera studies, theater & performance studies, and documentary studies, her research illustrates how American documentary operas endeavor to capture a specific historical context through sound and to represent the affordances of music in foregrounding particular stories. In so doing, she argues that American contemporary documentary opera presents a subversive means of cultural performance for historically marginalized artists today. Her research has been supported by the Yale Center for the Study of Race, Indigeneity, and Transnational Migration (RITM), the Yale Asian American Cultural Center Satoda Scholars program, and the University of Michigan EXCEL Enterprise Fund.
Allison is one of the founding members of the Grant Hagan Society, a graduate student-led affinity group that supports people of color in the Yale Department of Music. She served as a co-chair from 2020-2022 and on behalf of the society, she was awarded a Teaching Innovation Project grant from the Yale Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning to build the web resource, “Diversifying Music Studies,” accessible on GHS’s website. Since 2022, she has served as a McDougal Graduate Teaching Fellow for the Yale Poorvu Center for Teaching and Learning, leading workshops and trainings on effective and innovative teaching. Beyond Yale, Allison is invested in bridging the gap between performers and scholars, practicing public musicology through engagements such as her position as guest lecturer for the Connecticut SummerFest, and as one of the founding members and Artistic Board President of the Midnight Oil Collective.
Shwetant Kumar is an Indian composer, multi-instrumentalist, and musicologist. He earned a BM (magna cum laude) in Film Scoring and Electronic Production and Design from Berklee College of Music (2020), and a BA in English Literature from the University of Mumbai (2017).
Shwetant’s research examines the relationships between literature, theatre, cinema, music technology, socioeconomics, humour, and offensiveness. He has been commissioned articles by leading Indian online platforms such as Serenade Magazine and Scroll. As the archivist for the late Indian composer Vanraj Bhatia, he is currently writing and researching Bhatia’s authorised biography.
Shwetant enjoys the company of his friends, and spends the little spare time he has working towards a PhD in Ethnomusicology at Yale.
Cedric Preston McCoy
Christoph’ McFadden is a second year PhD student in Music and African American Studies at Yale University. He is an honor graduate of Claflin University, where he earned the Bachelor of Arts in Music (Voice). Christoph’s scholarly interests lie along the intersection of music and spirituality. He is interested in the nuanced spiritual experiences that characterize African American gospel traditions in both church and industry. Christoph’s work is aimed at preserving, discovering and celebrating aspects of the Gospel tradition that have remained opaque in academic settings. In so doing, Christoph’ believes his research positions him to support current gospel practitioners while also highlighting the historic roles of faith and music in advancing societal equity. Christoph’ is also interested in the ways Black musical soundscapes broadly influence pop culture and social movements in the United States. He is affiliated with the Mellon Mays Fellowship and as of the 2022-23 academic year serves as co-chair of the Grant Hagan Society of Yale’s Department of Music. Additionally, Christoph’ is a singer, published writer, Christian minister, and is passionate about mentorship; he leads with his personal motto: “Live life above the influence.”
Holly Chung (co-chair, 2019–20)