Associate Professor of TheoryOffice (Primary):
Head, Division of Theory/Composition
Director of Graduate Studies
MRH 3.702AOffice (Secondary):
MRH 3.734UT Address:
Butler School of Music
2406 Robert Dedman Dr., stop E3100
Austin, TX 78712-1555Email:firstname.lastname@example.org
Byron Almén received a Ph.D. from Indiana University in 1998 and joined the Butler School of Music theory faculty in that same year. His research interests are broadly focused on issues of musical meaning, including musical narrative, topic theory, myth and symbol, Jungian applications to music theory, discourse analysis, music in film and television, and text-music relationships. He has published in Journal of Music Theory, Journal of the American Musicological Society, Theory & Practice, Theoria,
and Journal of Music Theory Pedagogy,
among others. Professor Almén is the author of a recent book on musical narrative from Indiana University Press (2009). Along with Edward Pearsall (UT-Austin), he is the editor of a collection of essays on musical meaning, also published by Indiana University Press. He is a co-author of the undergraduate theory textbook Tonal Harmony
(7th ed., 2012). An active pianist and organist, Dr. Almén is the primary instructor for the history of music theory, music theory pedagogy, freshman music theory, and score reading at UT-Austin. He is currently at work on the book The Discourses of Music and Jung's Theory of Consciousness.
Dr. Almén is a member of UT-Austin's Faculty Council and the Indiana Theory Review Editorial Board and he recently served as the Program Committee Chair for the Society for Music Theory's 2011 conference in Minneapolis.
Selected Publications and Papers
Kostka, Stefan, Dorothy Payne, and Byron Almén. Tonal Harmony,
7th ed. McGraw-Hill, 2012.
2012. Kostka, Stefan, Dorothy Payne, and Byron Almén. Tonal Harmony,
7th ed. McGraw-Hill.
(In preparation). The Discourses of Music and Jung's Theory of Consciousness.
A Theory of Musical Narrative.
Indiana University Press, 2009.
Approaches to Meaning in Music.
Edward Pearsall, co-editor. Indiana University Press, 2006.
Articles and Reviews
(with Robert S. Hatten). "Narrative Engagement with 20th-century Music: Possibilities and Limits." In Michael L. Klein and Nicholas Reyland (eds.) Music and Narrative Since 1900.
Indiana University Press. 2012.
"Towards an Aesthetics of Musical Function." In Denis Collins (ed.), Music Theory and Its Methods: Structures, Challenges, Directions.
Peter Lang Publishers, 2012.
"Narrative Archetypes: Theory and Analysis" Music Theory and Analysis: Journal of the Department of Music Theory
(Belgrade). Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference, 2009, 1-25.
"Jung's Function-Attitudes in Music Composition and Discourse." In Psyche and the Arts,
Susan Rowland, editor. Routledge Press, 2008, 117-27.
"The Sacrificed Hero: Creative Mythopoesis in Mahler's Wunderhorn Symphonies." In Approaches to Meaning in Music.
Edited by Byron Almén and Edward Pearsall. Indiana University Press, 2006, 135-69.
"Modes of Analysis." Theory & Practice
31 (2006): 1-38.
"Musical ‘Temperament': Theorists and the Functions of Musical Analysis." Theoria
12 (2005): 31-68.
"Poetry Analysis in the Music Classroom: Wilfred Owen and Britten's War Requiem."Journal of Music Theory Pedagogy
19 (2005): 1-50.
"Narrative and Topic." Indiana Theory Review
25 (2004): 1-38.
"Narrative Archetypes: A Critique, Theory, and Method of Narrative Analysis." Journal of Music Theory
47.1 (2003): 1-39.
"Prophets of the Decline: The Worldviews of Heinrich Schenker and Oswald Spengler." Indiana Theory Review
17.1 (1996): 1-24.
Review of Daniel K.L. Chua, Absolute Music and the Construction of Meaning. Journal of the American Musicological Society
57.1 (2004): 185-93.
"Toward a Pluralism of Musical Cognitive Functions." In Denis Collins (ed.), Music Theory and Its Methods: Structures, Challenges, Directions.
Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang Publishers.
(with Robert S. Hatten) "Narrative Engagement with 20th-century Music: Possibilities and
Limits." In Michael L. Klein and Nicholas Reyland (eds.), Music and Narrative since 1900.
Bloomington: Indiana University Press.
"The Teleology of the Sign User." Semiotyka muzyki dziś. Teorie – strategie – aplikacje
[Music Semiotics Today: Theories, Strategies and Applications
]. The Charles Sanders Peirce Philosophical Society: Krakow, Poland.
"Archétypes narratives en musique: la method de J. J. Liszka." In Marta Grabocz (ed.), Narratologie musicale: théorie et analyse (Topiques et strategies narratives en musique)
. Editions des Archives contemporaines: Paris.
2011. Plenary Address: "The Teleology of the Sign User: Modeling Some Binary Constraints on Narrative Interpretation." International Semiotics Institute Symposium , Imatra, Finland (June 5-8).
2012. "An Overview of Musical Narrativity in North America and Great Britain." 1st International Conference on Narratology and the Arts. Institut Hongrois, Paris. (December 7-8).
2012. (with James Buhler) " ‘To Everything There Is a Season': Topic Formation and The Hearts of Space.
" International Conference on Music Semiotics in Memory of Raymond Monelle University of Edinburgh (October 26-28).
Recent Keynote and Plenary Addresses
Plenary Address: "The Teleology of the Sign User: Modeling Some Binary Constraints on Narrative Interpretation." International Semiotics Institute Symposium. Imatra, Finland, June 5-8, 2012.
"Hermeneutic Knots and Fractured Agents in David Lynch's INLAND EMPIRE." University of Minnesota, April 23, 2010.
Keynote Address: "Approaching Musical Narrative." Seventh International Conference on Music Theory. Belgrade, Serbia. May 15-17, 2009.
Dads' Association Centennial Teaching Fellowship. 2011.
Grace Hill Milam Centennial Fellowship in Fine Arts. 2010-11.
College of Fine Arts Distinguished Teacher Award. 2010.
Butler School of Music Teaching Excellence Award. 2010.
2012. University of Texas College of Fine Arts Summer Creative Research Grant.
2012. Faculty Research Assignment (Spring Semester)
2011. Nominated for UT Regents' Outstanding Teaching Award
2011-12. Dads' Association Centennial Teaching Fellowship
Society for Music Theory: Chair of the 2011 Program Committee (Minneapolis)s