Digital Lectures
The Society for American Music’s Education Committee sponsors a series of online video lectures on American music topics. Designed for general audiences, these lectures address any topic or theme in American music studies. Each “Digital Lecture in American Music” is between 10 and 15 minutes in length.


CFP: Digital Lectures in American Music (2020-21)

The Society for American Music’s Education Committee solicits proposals for a series of online video lectures on American music topics. Designed for general audiences (including, but not limited to, high school and university students, concertgoers, and/or historical societies), these lectures may address any topic or theme in American music studies but should approach the material with the layperson in mind. Each “Digital Lecture in American Music” should be 10-15 minutes in length.  Please note that the Society employs an expansive definition of “American music” that encompasses all musics of the Americas, and especially welcomes submissions addressing Latin music, Canadian music, Indigenous music, and other marginalized music traditions. In this fifth iteration of the DLAM project, we are open to proposals that explore the use of the audiovisual medium in original and creative ways. The committee will prioritize submissions from those who have not previously developed a digital lecture for the society.

An application should contain a complete curriculum vitae and a proposal of no more than 500 words that includes the following:

  • The topic or theme to be addressed in the lecture.
  • A rationale explaining the relevance of the topic or theme to a lay audience.
  • The intended audience(s) for the lecture.
  • A discussion of the ways that the presenter will capitalize on the video medium.
  • A statement describing the presenter’s access to and any relevant experience with video production equipment and software, as well as storyboarding, script writing, and/or videography.

Successful proposals will:

  • Explore a compelling topic of broad interest.
  • Rely on contemporary scholarship in American music studies.     
  • Demonstrate sensitivity to the needs of a lay audience.
  • Make strong use of the video medium.

The Society for American Music’s Education Committee will select three proposals for this round of “Digital Lectures in American Music” and will award an honorarium of US$500 upon completion of the project. The lectures will be hosted on the Society’s webpage and its YouTube channel .

Click here to apply. The list of Education Committee members can be viewed on our Committees page. Please use this contact form if you have any questions. 

Applications must be submitted by 15 October 2020.


Past Winners

Year Winner
2020 Esther Morgan-Ellis
“Follow the Bouncing Ball!”: Sing-Alongs in Film and Television

Sarah Town
“Any Lady Need a Man?”: Gendering and Ungendering Transnational Cuban Social Dance
2019 Basil Considine and Elissa Edwards
Eliza Eichelberger Ridgely

Michelle Boyd
The Larks Still Bravely Sing: Musical Settings of “In Flanders Fields”

Carol Shansky and Joseph D’Auguste
Klezmer: European Traditions Reimagined in America

2018 Dana Gorzelany-Mostak
Songs in the Key of President C: Music on the Campaign Trail

David Blake
Performing Democracy Through Folksong: Pete Seeger in the 1950s

Hannah Leland
Valses fromSpecter of the Rose: A Hollywood Romance

2017 Katherine Reed
Stagger Lee’s Come Out on Top: The Ballad of Stagger Lee

Monica Hershberger
Making Lizzie Borden

Rami Stucky
Steve Reich and the Harlem Riots: “Come Out,” 1966