Dean of Liberal Arts José Luis Bermúdez has named Professor of Music Harris M. Berger as the new head of the Department of Performance Studies.
Dr. Berger, who has served as associate department head for the past seven years under Dr. Judith Hamera and as acting department head, has spent the past 16 years teaching and doing research in Aggieland. He has also taught at Indiana University-Bloomington and Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Berger will lead Texas A&M’s performance studies department not only into a new era but into a new building as well. The department, along with the department of English, is expected to move into the soon-to-be finished five-story Liberal Arts and Humanities building by the end of 2012.
An authority in the fields of ethnomusicology, folklore studies, popular music studies, and performance studies, Dr. Berger currently serves as the president for the Society of Ethnomusicology (SEM) and is an advisory board member for the Journal of Musicology.
He has authored three books: Stance: Ideas about emotion, style, and meaning for the study of expressive culture (2009), Identity and everyday life: Essays in the study of folklore, music, and popular culture (2004, co-authored by Giovanna P. Del Negro), and Metal, rock, and jazz: Perception and the phenomenology of musical experience (1999).
Berger earned degrees from both Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn., (B.A. in Music), and Indiana University in Bloomington (M.A. in Folklore/Ethnomusicology; Ph.D. in Folklore/Ethnomusicology). He is married to Giovanna P. Del Negro.
Berger’s term officially began on June 1 and will continue until May 31, 2016.