General information

Busse Berger
Curriculum Vita

CV includes professional experience, visiting appointments, awards and fellowships, publications, and more. View or download a PDF: print version.


1986   Ph.D. in Musicology, Boston University 

1974   Mellomfag (equivalent to M.A.) in German Studies, Trondheim
University, Norway

1971   Staatsexamen für das Lehramt an Gymnasien (equivalent to M.A.) in Music, Musikhochschule Detmold, West Germany

Areas of Specialization

History of the medieval and renaissance music and theory
Music in colonies, mission and trade stations
Theories about the evolution of music

Professional Experience

1996–   Professor of Music, UC Davis

1991–96   Associate Professor of Music, UC Davis

1989–91   Assistant Professor of Music, UC Davis

1988   Lecturer, Department of Music, University of California, Davis

1985–86   National Public Radio
Selecting programs and writing texts for the weekly broadcast of “Music of the Italian Masters,” produced by the Frank V. De Bellis Collection at San Francisco State University

1981   Lecturer, Department of Music, Trondheim University, Norway

1975–76   Flutist, Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, Norway

1974–76   Lecturer, Department of Music, Trondheim University, Norway

1973–76   Lecturer, Trondheim Conservatory, Norway

1973–76   Member of Ringve Kammerensemble (Early Music Group), Trondheim, Norway

Visiting Appointments

2011–12  Lise-Meitner Fellow and Visiting Professor, University of Vienna

2005–06  Lehman Visiting Professor, Harvard University Center
for the Study of the Italian Renaissance, Villa I Tatti, Florence

March 1999 Astor Visiting Lecturer, Oxford University

Organization of Conferences

Mondavi Center, UC Davis: “Compositional Processes: A Discussion with Composers, Musicologists, and Ethnomusicologists,” March 3, 2008

Villa I Tatti, Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies: “The Art of Memory: Between Archive and Invention from the Middle Ages to the Late Renaissance: Literature, Art and Music,” May 11, 2006

Awards and Fellowships

2015–16​   Fellow, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin (Institute of Advanced Studies)

2015​   Faculty Research Lecturer, University of California, Davis. (The award is the highest honor the Davis Division of the Academic Senate accords its members and is only given to one faculty each year.)

2014  ​ Colin Slim Award for the best article by a senior scholar from the American Musicological Society for “Spreading the Gospel of Singbewegung.”

2014​   Bruno Nettl Prize from the Society of Ethnomusicology for “Spreading the Gospel of Singbewegung,” which recognizes an outstanding publication dealing with the history of the field of ethnomusicology.

July 2012   Director’s Guest, Civitella Rainieri Foundation, Italy

2011–12   Presidential Fellow, University of California

2011–12   Lise-Meitner Fellowship, (for highly qualified scientists of any discipline), Vienna, Austria Science Fund

2011   Herbert A. Young Society Deans’ Fellowship Award

2006 Wallace Berry Award from the Society for Music Theory for Medieval Music and the Art of Memory

2006   Society for Music Theory’s Wallace Berry Award for best book (2005) for Medieval Music and the Art of Memory

2006   ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for Medieval Music and the Art of Memory

2001–02   Fellow, National Endowment for the Humanities

2001–02   Marta Sutton Weeks Fellow, Stanford Humanities Center

Fall 2001   Faculty Development Award, University of California, Davis

1996–97   Fellow, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation

1992–93   Presidential Fellow, University of California (declined)

1992–93   Ahmansson Fellow, Villa I Tatti, Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies

1991   Alfred Einstein Award for “a musicological article of exceptional merit by a scholar in the earlier stages of his or her career” for “The Myth of diminutio per tertiam partem

1990   Research Fellowship for Junior Faculty, University of California

1987   Travel Grant, American Council of Learned Societies


I.  Books

Anna Maria Busse Berger and Jesse Rodin, eds., The Cambridge History of Fifteenth-Century Music (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015).

Anna Maria Busse Berger and Massimiliano Rossi, eds., Memory and Invention: Medieval and Renaissance Literature, Art, and Music, I Tatti Studies (Florence: Olschki, 2009).

Medieval Music and the Art of Memory (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2005). Italian translation by Carla Vivarelli, La musica medievale e l’arte della memoria (Rome, 2008). Winner of Wallace Berry Award from Society for Music Theory and Deems Taylor Award from ASCAP.

Mensuration and Proportion Signs: Origins and Evolution (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993).

Anna Maria Busse Berger and Reinhard Strohm, Musical Writings in the Middle Ages, Cambridge Readings in Music, in preparation for Cambridge University Press. 

II. Articles

“Franco’s Notational Reforms: Acceptance and Resistance,” eds. Fabian Kolb and Klaus Pietschmann, Musik der mittelalterlichen MetropoleRäume, Identitätenund Kontext der Musik in Köln und Mainz ca. 900–1400, in Beiträge zurrheinischen Musikgeschichte (Kassel:  Merseburg, 2015), 15 pages.

“Introduction,” Anna Maria Busse Berger and Jesse Rodin, eds., The Cambridge History of Fifteenth-Century Music, (Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press, 2015), 29 pages.

“Composition in the Mind,” Anna Maria Busse Berger and Jesse Rodin, eds., The Cambridge History of Fifteenth-Century Music, (Cambridge:  Cambridge University Press, 2014) 15 pages.

“How Did Oswald von Wolkenstein Make His Contrafacta,” Anna Maria Busse Berger and Jesse Rodin, eds., The Cambridge History of Fifteenth-Century Music, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014) 15 pages.

“Spreading the Gospel of Singbewegung: An Ethnomusicologist Missionary in Tanganyika of the 1930s,” Journal of the American Musicological Society, 66 (1913), 475–522.

“Gedächtniskunst und Kompositionsprozess in der Renaissance,” Michele Calella and Nicholas Urbanek, eds., Historische Musikwissenschaft. Grundlagen und Perspektiven (Stuttgart: Metzler, 2013), 356–66.

“Music Graffiti in the Crypt of Siena Cathedral: A Preliminary Assessment,” Judith Paraino, ed., Critical Practices of Medieval Music: Theory, Composition, Performance, (n.p.: American Institute of Musicology, 2013), 255–67.

“Wie hat Oswald von Wolkenstein seine Kontrafakta angefertigt?” in Urbanität, Identitätskonstruktion und Humanismus: Musik, Kunst und Kultur zur Zeit des Basler Konzils, Resonanzen (Basel:  Schwabe, 2013), pp. 1–16.

“Quotation in Medieval Music,” Yolanda Plumley and Giuliano di Bacco, eds., Citation, Intertextuality and Memory in the Middle Ages and Renaissance, Vol. 2:  Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives on Medieval Culture (Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 2013), 30–50.

“Teaching and Learning Music,” Mark Everist and Thomas Kelly, eds., The Cambridge History of Medieval Music (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013), 27 pages.

“Wann wurde das Notre Dame Repertorium kanonisch?” Der Werkekanon in der Musik-Werturteil, Konstrukt, historiographische Herausforderung, Eds. Klaus Pietzschmann and Melania Wald (Munich: Edition Text und Kritik, 2013), 254–79.

“The Use of Architectural Proportions in Compositions of the Fourteenth Century,” Renaissance Studies in Honor of Joseph Connors, ed. Louis A. Waldman, Machtelt Israëls (Florence: Olschki, 2013).

“The Consequences of Ars Nova Notation,” Calligraphy of Medieval Music, ed. John Haines, Musicalia Medii Aevi I (Turnhour: Brepols, 2012). Ca. 20 pages.

“Music and Mathematics in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance,” La matematica, vol. 3, eds. Claudio Bartocci and Piergiorgio Odifreddi (Turin: Einaudi, 2010).  

“The Role of Proportions in Composition and Memorization of Isorhythmic Motets,” eds., Sabine Rommevaux, Philippe Vendrix & Vasco Zara, Proportions, Centre d’Études Superieures de la Renaissance, Tours (Turnhout: Brepols, 2010). 

“The Problem of Diminished Counterpoint,” “Uno gentile et subtile ingenio”: Studies in Renaissance Music in Honour of Bonnie Blackburn, ed. Jennifer Bloxam, Gioia Filocamo, and Herbert Kellman, (Turnhout: Brepols, 2009).  

“Some Thoughts on Composition, Transmission and Notation of Early Music,” Early Music: Context and Ideas II, International Conference in Musicology, 11-14 September, 2008 (Cracow: Institute of Musicology, 2008), 21–26.

“Models of Composition in the Fifteenth Century,” Memory and Invention in Medieval and Renaissance Literature, Visual Arts, and Music, I Tatti Studies (Florence: Olschki, 2009). 

“The Origins of the Agenda of Medieval Musicology,” Music’s Intellectual History: Founders, Followers, and Fads, First Conference of the Répertoire International de Littérature Musicale, March 2005, City University of New York, ed. Zdravko Blazekovic, 2006.

“Compositional Practices in Trecento Music: Model Books and Musical Traditions,” Music as Social and Cultural Practice: Essays in Honour of Reinhard Strohm, eds. Melania Bucciarelli and Berta Joncus (Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell & Brewer, 2007), pp. 24–37.

“Die isorhythmische Motette und die Gedächtniskunst,” Kongressbericht Weimar 2004, Musik und kulturelle Identität, XIII. Internationaler Kongress der Gesellschaft für Musikforschung, forthcoming with (Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2007).

Review-essay of Jürg Stenzl, ed., Perotinus Magnus, Musik-Konzepte, 107 (Munich: Edition Text + Kritik, 2000), Plainsong and Medieval Music, 11 (2002), 44–54.

“L’invention du temps mesuré au XIIIe siècle,” Les Ecritures du temps, ed. Peter Szendy, Centre Georges Pompidou, IRCAM (Paris: l’Harmattan, 2001), pp. 21–56.

“Friedrich Ludwig, Jacques Handschin  and the Agenda of Medieval Musicology” forthcoming Perspektiven auf die Musik vor 1600: Beiträge vom Symposium Neustift,/Novacella, 1998, ed. Annegrit Laubenthal (Hildesheim: Olms, 2005).

“The Evolution of Rhythmic Notation,” Thomas Christensen, ed., Cambridge History of Western Music Theory (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), pp. 628-56.

“The Interpretation of Mensuration Signs and Their Relationship to Commercial Arithmetic,” Le notazioni della polifonia vocale dei secoli IX-XIV, eds. Maria Caraci Vela, Daniele Sabaino, and Stefano Aresi,  (Pisa: Edizioni ETS, 2008), pp. 315–29.

“Gedächtniskunst und frühe Mehrstimmigkeit: Mündlichkeit in der Überlieferung des Notre Dame Repertoires,” Hermann Danuser and Tobias Plebuch, eds., Musik als Text, vol. 2, (Kassel: Bärenreiter, 1999), pp. 241–46.

“Die Rolle der Mündlichkeit in der Komposition der ‘Notre Dame-Polyphonie,’” Das Mittelalter, 3 (1998), 127–43.

“Notation mensuraliste et autres systèmes de mesure au XIVè siècle,”  Médiévales, 32 (1997), 31–46.

“Cut Signs in Fifteenth-Century Musical Practice,” Music in Renaissance Cities and Courts. Studies in Honor of Lewis Lockwood, ed. Jessie Ann Owens and Anthony M. Cummings (Michigan: Harmonie Park Press, 1997), pp. 101–12.

“Mnemotechnics and Notre Dame Polyphony,” Journal of Musicology, 14 (1996), 263–98.

“Musical Proportions and Arithmetic in the Late Middle Ages and Renaissance,” Musica Disciplina, 44 (1990), 89–118. 

“The Myth of diminutio per tertiam partem,Journal of Musicology, 8 (1990), 398426.

“The Origin and Early History of Proportion Signs,” Journal of the American Musicological Society, 41 (1988), 40333.

“The Relationship of Perfect and Imperfect Time in Italian Theory of the Renaissance,” Early Music History, 5 (1985), 1–28.

III.  Minor Papers and Reviews

“How Gregorian Chant Was Memorized” and “Between Orality and Literacy:  Compositional Process in the Polyphony of Notre Dame de Paris” in Atlante Storico della Musica Medievale, ed. Vera Minazzi and Cesarino Ruini, (Milan: Editoriale Jaca Book, 2010).

Review of Gianna Pomata, Gabriella Zarri, eds., I monasteri femminili come centri di cultura fra rinascimento e barocco, Biblioteca di storia sociale 33 (Roma:  Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura, 2005), in Rivista di storia della Chiesa in Italia.

Review-essay of James Garratt, Palestrina and the German Romantic Imagination (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002), in Music and Letters, 86 (2005), 138–42.

“Ludwig, Friedrich,” Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (2004).

“Aggere, Antonius de,” The Revised New Grove (2001).

“Agricola, Martin,” ibid.

“Sadze, Christian,” ibid.

“Boen, Johannes,” revised for ibid.

“Frosch, Johannes,” revised for ibid.

“Berger, Anna Maria Busse,” Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart. (Second revised edition, 2000).

Review of Bonnie J. Blackburn, Edward Lowinsky, and Clement A. Miller, A Correspondence of Renaissance Musicians (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1991) in Early Music History, 12 (1993), 191–203.

IV. Edited CDs and Notes

Walzenaufnahmen von Franz Rietzsch – Tanzania 1931–37.  Berliner Phonogramm-Archiv-Historische Klangdokumente/Berlin Phonogramm-Archiv-Historical Sound Documents (Berlin: Berlin Phonogramm-Archiv, 2014).

V. Translations

Jan of Lublin, Tabulatura Ioannis de Lublin canonic (1540). Ed. Elzbieta Witkowska-Zaremba. (Warsaw:  Polish Academy of Sciences, 2014). Translated from Latin to English.

Service in Professional Organizations

2015–   Advisory board, Recercare. (Classified as ‘Category A’ by the Italian National Agency for the Evaluation of University Research and Systems.)

2014–   Advisory Board, Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (MGG), responsible for Music of the Middle Ages.

2016   Chair, Kinkeldey Committee for the best book by a senior scholar, American Musicological Society.

2014–16   Member, Kinkeldey Committee for the best book by a senior scholar, American Musicological Society.

2012–16   Advisory Board, Balzan Foundation, Research Project Reinhard Strohm, Oxford University, “Towards a Global History of Music.”

2012–   Advisory Board, “Wiener Forum für ältere Musikgeschichte.”

2012   Advisory Board, “Création polyphonique – oralité,” Université de Toulouse, France.

2010–13   Advisory Board, Journal of Music History Pedagogy.

2009–12   Member of Board of Directors, American Musicological Society

2010–11   Chair, AMS Committee on Communications

2009–11   Member, AMS Committee on Communications

2009–11   President, American Musicological Society, Northern California Chapter

1987–2013   Panelist, Guggenheim Foundation, NEH, ACLS, Stanford Humanities Center, Israel Science Foundation

1987–2009   Reviewer for Journal of the American Musicological Society, Journal of Musicology, Journal of Musicological Research; Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Indiana University Press, Norton

2009   Member of Program Committee of Fifth Conference on Interdisciplinary Musicology, Paris, Université de Paris, October 26–29

2008–   Advisory Board, Journal of the Alamire Foundation (Leuven, Belgium).

2008   Organizer and Co-Chair of Session “Historical Theory and the Role of Cultural Memory, “Early Music: Contexts and Ideas II,”  International Conference in Musicology, September 11–14, 2008.

2008   Organizer and Chair of Session “Italian Madrigals: Rhetorical Strategies II, in Honor of Lewis Lockwood,” Annual Meeting of the Renaissance Society of America, Chicago, April 3, 2008.

2007–   Member of Editorial Board of the Journal of Interdisciplinary Music Studies

2004–09   Member of Selection Committee, President’s Fellowship in the Humanities, University of California and NEH, Washington, DC

2006   Member of Program Committee of Conference on Interdisciplinary Musicology, Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre with University of Tartu, Talinn, August 15–19, 2007

2006–   Advisory Board for Music Journal Performance Practice Review

2005   Chair of the Program Committee of the Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society, Washington, D.C., 2005

2004–05    Member of Program Committee for the Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society in Seattle, Washington

2004–   Member of Campaign Committee of the American Musicological Society

2003–04   Member of Program Committtee of Conference on Interdisciplinary Musicology, Graz, Austria, April 15–18, 2004

1999–2001   Chair of Einstein-Award-Committee

1998–2001   Member of Editorial Board, Journal of the American Musicological Society

2000   Member of Editorial Board, Perspektiven auf die Musik vor 1600: Beiträge vom Symposium Neustift,/Novacella, 1998 (Hildesheim: Olms, 2000)

1998–99   Member of Einstein-Award-Committee

1997–98   Member of the AMS Committee on Honorary and Corresponding Members

1995–97   Member of the Council, American Musicological Society

1994   Member of Program Committee, annual meeting of the American Musicological Society, Minneapolis, 1994

Service in the University

Fall 2012–   Faculty Assistant to Vice Provost of Academic Affairs

Spring 2011   Member, Search Committee for Vice Provost of Academic Affairs

2007–09   ​Member, Faculty Research Lecture Award Committee

2006–09​   Chair, Department of Music

2010–11   Member, University of California Merced, Committee for Academic Personnel

2006–09​   Member, Selection Committee for University of California, Presidential Fellowship

2006–09​   Member, Executive Committee of the College of Letters and Sciences.

Fall 2009​   Member, University of California, Davis, Committee for Academic Personnel

2003–05​   Member, UCAP

2000​​   Member of Special Committee on Academic Processes

1999–2002​   Member of Davis Humanities Institute Advisory Board

1998–2001​   Member, Committee on Research

Spring 1997   Member, Provost’s Academic Advisory Committee

Spring 1997   Member, Search Committee for the Dean of the Graduate School

1995–97​   Chair, Education Abroad Committee 

1994–97   Member, Committee on Research

1994–97   Graduate Adviser

1990–92   ​Graduate Adviser


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