Book Release Event in Norway

Celebrating a new book with live music and readings . . .

WHEN: Wednesday afternoon, April 25, 2018, 14:00.
WHERE: Library, Kronstad campus, Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Bergen.
WHO: All are welcome, free public event.
LINK for more details:

The book to be featured at this event is called Music Glocalization: Heritage and Innovation in a Digital Age (edited by David Hebert and Mikolaj Rykowski). This book describes how the experience of music has changed as a result of new technologies and evolving attitudes toward the human condition. Cambridge Analytica/Facebook and music preferences, didjeridoos of PVC pipe, Eastern vs. Western influences from contemporary Uzbek music to the compositions of Estonian composer Arvo Part, musical traditions of Sumatra (Indonesia), and how Wagner transcends the stereotypes of pro-Nazi art - these are just a few of the topics raised in the book Music Glocalization.

Prof. Hebert’s co-author for this book – Dr. Mikolaj Rykowski – is coming from Poland to participate, and together they will present the main ideas from the book, offering brief readings and live performances of songs that directly relate to themes in the book. They are joined by two other musicians, Mai Goto and Aleksandra Rykowska.

Drinks and snacks will be served, and the audience will also have a chance to win a free copy of the latest book.

Here is a link to the recent book release event in Poland:

Here are links for further information about the book and its authors:


Book Release Event in Poland

I look forward to visiting Poznan, Poland, in early April for a launch of our new book Music Glocalization: Heritage and Innovation in a Digital Age.

Here are links for further information about this book, including free samples:

A link to further information on the book launch will be posted here soon. To make this book launch especially interesting, we plan to perform songs that thematically link with each excerpt to be read from the book.

Shown above is a nice photo of the Old Town district of Poznan, offered to the public domain by Dennis Jarvis on Wikipedia.


Study Trip to Vienna

In late May 2018, much of our music faculty from Bergen will be visiting Vienna on a study trip. This is the final activity planned by the old music department as we officially complete our restructuring to become part of a new Institute for Arts Education within a multi-campus university structure. 

Vienna is a unique city of great cultural significance, with many sites acknowledged by UNESCO as invaluable cultural heritage. We look forward to seeing several live performances as well as historical sites related to the development of European art music. 

Shown here is a public domain image of old Vienna from a 1493 edition of the Nuremberg Chronicle. 


Keynote Speech in Estonia: The Power of Music to Unite and Divide

I look forward to giving a keynote speech for the national music education conference in Estonia in April, 2018. It is exciting to have this opportunity to visit such a beautiful country with incredibly rich musical traditions. 

Below is a link to the conference website as well as the abstract for my speech. I am also posting here some photos I took during a visit to Estonia about one year ago. 

The Power of Music to Unite and Divide: 
Rethinking its Potential Role in 21st Century Education

Music educators tend to believe that by teaching music they contribute to making the world a better place. Nevertheless, some policy-makers evidently assume that music, while a pleasant diversion, is of little consequence compared to technical and scientific pursuits. They note that many amateurs perform well without specialized musical knowledge, while some of the world’s highest paid musicians never formally studied music. Some even see music competitions as the ultimate arena for achievement, where participants are divided into winners and losers. The question of why music education matters is inseparable from why music itself matters, for which competition and economic arguments can seem a distraction. How this latter question is satisfactorily answered, I suggest, requires careful consideration of how music both unites and divides. It follows that I will discuss ways that particular forms of music are connected to such potent social categories as age, gender, socioeconomic status, nationality and ethnicity, as well as how various musical practices are addressed in the context of schools. In order for the importance of music to be more broadly appreciated, it seems music educators must strive to more convincingly demonstrate our evocative art’s unique power. From either a historical or global perspective, it becomes clear that music participation profoundly contributes to the cultivation of empathetic insights into diverse identities, while also strengthening community cohesion through appreciation of heritage and creative innovation. Having established this premise, I seek in this presentation to stimulate reflection on a critical question: How, as music teachers, might we best use music’s power to unite or divide?


Nordic Network for Music Education 2018

The Nordic Network for Music Education (NNME) has just completed its latest planning meeting in Copenhagen, and everything is looking positive for another intensive course - in Finland this time - with all 15 partner institutions that offer music education Master degrees in Northern Europe: located in the nations of Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.

The network has a 20-year history of sponsorship from Northern European governments (Nordplus program), and has been managed for these two decades by its founder Torunn Bakken Hauge, who asked me to become its new manager in 2018. Nordplus sponsorship enables an annual joint intensive course as well as international exchange of teachers and students, which across time has contributed profoundly to the field of music education in this region.   

We will soon complete the finishing touches to a unique book entitled Advancing Music Education in Northern Europe for publication by Routledge / Taylor & Francis later in 2018, a multi-author book developed through collaboration in this network, and in the future we intend to also produce multimedia resources and joint programs. I am especially interested in exploring how NNME might cooperate directly with similar initiatives in other parts of the world.

Here is the current website for NNME:


Music of Norwegian Composers

I am currently giving music lectures in Bergen as part of a course for international students from seven countries (Belgium, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Slovakia, Greece, and Spain), all of whom are visiting Norway for this Spring 2018 semester.

On Monday I give a recital affiliated with the class in collaboration with pianist Mai Goto. Click HERE for a link to the recital program.

For this recital, we are performing music by notable Norwegian composers: EDVARD GRIEG (1843-1907), GEIR TVEITT (1908-1981), HARALD SAEVERUD (1897-1992), and ROLF WALLIN (b.1957).

It is impressive to see how many interesting musicians were born in Bergen, and a major project that I am developing for the near future is an open access online course (MOOC) that demonstrates the Bergen music scene with lots of original interviews and documentary video, supplemented with engaging lectures and fun quizzes to help participants retain the information provided. I am convinced this MOOC will be interesting for people worldwide and increase global interest in music, and music education, in Norway.

(Geirr Tveitt image from Wikipedia)


Arts Policy Course at Chinese Law School

I eagerly look forward to teaching an intensive course on Arts Policy in summer 2018 for China’s distinguished law faculty, at the China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing.

China has one of the world’s oldest traditions of law and literacy, and has shown great respect for the arts since the time of Confucius. It is a nation that is rapidly changing, with noticeable new developments, and increasing international cooperation, every year.

Here are links for more information about China University of Political Science and Law: