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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Lamont School of Music

Lamont Summer Academy


Timothy Best

Timothy Best is a music theorist and pianist from Charlottesville, VA, currently on the faculty of the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music. He holds a BM in piano from the New England Conservatory, and MM's in both piano and music theory from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where is currently working on his PhD. His research focuses on issues of musical meaning and interpretation, particularly using theories of semiotics, embodiment, musical gesture and intertextuality. Other interests include text/music relations in 19th-century music, pitch relations in early 20th-century music, form in the nineteenth-century (formal ambiguity, in particular) and music theory pedagogy. His dissertation research, on form and meaning in Schubert's finales, has been presented at the Society for Music Theory's annual conference. He has also presented papers at the annual conference of Semiotic Society of America, and regional conferences such as Music Theory Midwest and the Rocky Mountain Society for Music Theory. In addition to performances and presentations throughout the United States, he has held teaching positions at Oberlin College, Indiana University and the University of Wyoming.