Joan Titus

Joan Titus, Associate Professor in Musicology, holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in Musicology with concentrations in Film Studies and Russian Studies from the Ohio State University; and a B.A.M. from the University of Arizona in Music History, with a minor in Art History. Her research topics include music and visual media, music and cultural politics, and music and gender. Her most current projects address Shostakovich's scoring for Soviet cinema, women and music in Soviet Russian cinema, and women's musical performance in contemporary Morocco. Dr. Titus' publications focus on the cultural politics of Russian music, Soviet film music, and indigenous music. Her most recent book, The Early Film Music of Dmitry Shostakovich (Oxford University Press, 2016) examines into narration and politics in Dmitry Shostakovich's early film scores, and won an AMS 75 PAYS Publication Subvention. She is currently working on several book projects, including two regarding Shostakovich’s film music career under Stalinism and beyond, and another on the representation and participation of women in music for Soviet cinema. She also has published on transnationalism and music in regard to Southwest Native American dance cultures, and opera and film mediations. Her chapter "Waila as Transnational Practice," in the award-winning Transnational Encounters: Music and Performance at the U.S-Mexico Border (AMS Ruth A. Solie Award; OUP, 2011; Alejandro Madrid, ed.) discusses waila, a Tohono O’odham social-dance music tradition, as a transnational phenomenon. Dr. Titus frequently gives scholarly and invited presentations at conferences in the U.S. and abroad, including the American Musicological Society, Society for Ethnomusicology, Society for American Music, International Musicological Society, and the Society for Cinema and Media Studies.

There are 8 included publications by Joan Titus :

TitleDateViewsBrief Description
Essay and Translation of “About the Music to the New Babylon” by Dmitry Shostakovich 2011 4 Dmitry Shostakovich (1906-75) published his first essay on film music during the Cultural Revolution, a time when all the arts in the Soviet Union were experiencing significant change. Film in particular was targeted because of its potential to carry...
Reflections on Society of Cinema and Media Studies Conference, Seattle 2019 2019 8 Sound and music again had excellent representation on the programme at this year’s annual meeting of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) – an immense conference, with roughly 420 panels. SCMS has an official Sound and Music Studies Schola...
Review of The Struggle for Control of Soviet Music from 1932 to 1948: Socialist Realism vs. Western Formalism, by Meri Herrala 2013 523 In her descriptive and lengthy tome, Finnish historian Meri Herrala uses Soviet opera as a lens to examine the nuanced relationships between the Union of Soviet Composers, opera theaters, Muzfond, and other Soviet musical-cultural institutions betwee...
Shostakovich as Film Music Theorist 2013 10 Shostakovich’s call for a solid knowledge of how to write music properly for cinema continued throughout his life. It began with his first article on the film The New Babylon, and continued into his scores for films in the 1950s. He was one of the fi...
Silents, Sound, and Modernism in Dmitry Shostakovich’s Score to the New Babylon (1928–1929 2014 4 Although widely regarded by scholars and general audiences as one of the greatest of the last “silent” films, Novyi Vavilon (New Babylon, dir. Kozintsev and Trauberg, 1929) was initially a surprising failure. Even with its original score by the celeb...
Socialist Realism, Modernism, and Dmitry Shostakovich’s Odna (Alone, 1931) 2010 4 After the somewhat unsuccessful premiere of The New Babylon in 1929, Grigoriy Kozintsev and Leonid Trauberg embarked on a new film, Odna (Alone). At this point in time, the arts, including music and film, were experiencing a shift into what would bec...
Stalin’s Music Prize: Soviet Culture and Politics by Marina Frolova-Walker [book review] 2017 11 In this book, musicologist Marina Frolova-Walker details the process and circumstances around the origin and awarding of the Stalin Prize, with special attention to the category of Music. Using extensive archival sources mixed with anecdotal stories ...
Waila as Transnational Practice 2011 17 This chapter studies the development of waila as a local reinvention of traditions from Germany and Mexico among the Tohono O’odham from Arizona, putting in evidence transnational flows that have historically informed the everyday lives and social co...