2017 conference featured speakers
Prof. Nancy Ammerman
Professor of Sociology, Boston University
Nancy Ammerman is Professor of Sociology of Religion at Boston University's School of Theology and in the Department of Sociology in the College of Arts and Sciences. Since September 2015, she has served as Associate Dean of the Faculty in the Social Sciences. Her most recent book Sacred Stories, Spiritual Tribes: Finding Religion in Everyday Life (Oxford University Press, 2013) explores the ways religion and spirituality are part of the everyday world of work, home, health, and public life. She has written widely on American congregations, including Congregation and Community (Rutgers University Press, 1997) and Pillars of Faith: American Congregations and their Partners (University of California Press, 2005).
Prof. Jeremy Begbie
Thomas A. Langford Research Professor of Theology, Duke Divinity School
He is also Senior Member at Wolfson College, Cambridge, and an Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge. Previously he has been Associate Principal at Ridley Hall, Cambridge, and Honorary Professor at the University of St Andrews where he directed the research project, Theology Through the Arts at the Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts.
He is author of a number of books, including Voicing Creation’s Praise: Towards a Theology of the Arts (T & T Clark); Theology, Music and Time (CUP), and most recently, Resounding Truth: Christian Wisdom in the World of Music (Baker/SPCK) which won the Christianity Today 2008 Book Award in the Theology/Ethics Category. A professionally trained and active musician, Begbie has taught widely in the UK and North America, and delivered performance-lectures across the world, from Israel to Australia and Hong Kong.
Dr. Sylvia A. Nannyonga-Tamusuza
Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology, Makerere University
Sylvia Antonia Nannyonga-Tamusuza, PhD is Associate Professor of Music at Makerere University and Head of the Department of Performing Arts and Film. She is the co-coordinator of the Ethnomusicology in Uganda Projects, and founder and Curator of the Makerere University Klaus Wachsmann Music Archive.
Nannyonga-Tamusuza has published on popular music, Roman Catholic Church music in Uganda, school music competitions, dance as music, sexuality in music and dance, politics and gender in music, the interface between ethnomusicology and music education, identities in diasporic music, and music repatriation and archiving. Her publications include the book Baakisimba: Gender in Music and Dance of the Baganda People of Uganda (Routledge, 2005) and numerous articles in journals and edited volumes. She is co-editor of Ethnomusicology in East Africa: Perspectives from Uganda and Beyond (Fountain, 2012).
Dr. Bissera Pentcheva
Associate Professor of Medieval Art, Associate Professor of Classics, Stanford University
Bissera Pentcheva teaches medieval art at Stanford University. Her research focuses on animation, phenomenology, aesthetics, and acoustics. Her articles have appeared in the Art Bulletin, Gesta, and Dumbarton Oaks Papers. Her three books include: Icons and Power: The Mother of God in Byzantium, Penn State Press 2006; The Sensual Icon: Space Ritual and The Senses in Byzantium, Penn State Press 2010; and Hagia Sophia: Sound, Space, and Spirit in Byzantium, Penn State Press in 2017. She has just completed an edited volume on art, music, acoustics, and the use of digital technology: Pentcheva, ed., Aural Architecture: Music, Acoustics and Ritual in Byzantium, Ashgate/Routledge 2017.
Rabbi Jeffrey A. Summit
Research Professor in the Department of Music and Neubauer Executive Director of Tufts Hillel, Tufts University
Jeffrey A. Summit, Ph.D. holds the appointment of Research Professor in the Department of Music and in the Judaic Studies program at Tufts University, where he also serves as rabbi and Neubauer Executive Director of Tufts Hillel. He is the author of Singing God’s Words: The Performance of Biblical Chant in Contemporary Judaism (Oxford University Press) and The Lord's Song in a Strange Land: Music and Identity in Contemporary Jewish Worship (Oxford University Press). His CD Abayudaya: Music from the Jewish People of Uganda (Smithsonian Folkways Recordings) was nominated for a GRAMMY award. His CD with video Delicious Peace: Coffee, Music and Interfaith Harmony in Uganda (Smithsonian Folkways Recordings) was awarded Best World Music CD by the Independent Music Awards. His research focuses on music and identity, music and spiritual experience, music and advocacy, and the impact of technology on the transmission of tradition.
Dr. Bettina Varwig
Senior Lecturer in Music, King’s College London
Prof. John Witvliet
Professor of Worship, Theology, & Congregational and Ministry Studies, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship
His areas of interest include the history of Christian worship, worship practices in various denominations, biblical and systematic theology of worship, the role of music and the arts in worship, choral music and consulting with churches on worship renewal.
Dr. Witvliet received his Ph.D. in liturgical studies and theology from the University of Notre Dame.
Dr. Abigail Wood
Senior Lecturer, Department of Music, University of Haifa