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Feisst wins Irving Lowens Book Award

November 08, 2012

Sabine Feisst, associate professor of music history and literature in the ASU School of Music in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts won the Irving Lowens Book Award of the Society for American Music for her monograph "Schoenberg’s New World: The American Years" (Oxford University Press 2011), the first full-length study of Schoenberg’s life and work in the United States.

The volume dispels many myths and fills significant gaps in the existing Schoenberg literature. It traces early American Schoenberg champions and illumines Schoenberg’s socialization in America, his American works and their performance and publication. It also explores his teaching activities and impact on American music after 1945, contributing to a new understanding of Schoenberg’s career.

The Irving Lowens Book Award is given each year for a “book that makes an outstanding contribution to American music studies.” It commemorates Irving Lowens, one of the principal founders and first president of the Society for American Music (1974–81), who laid the foundation for scholarship in American music history. Previous recipients include such noted scholars as Adrienne Fried Block, J. Peter Burkholder, Richard Crawford, Charles Hamm, Howard Pollack, Judith Tick and Denise Von Glahn. The award comprises a plaque and cash award.

"Schoenberg’s New World" was also awarded a PAYS publication subsidy by the American Musicological Society in 2011. It received numerous positive reviews and was praised as “exceedingly thorough study of Schoenberg’s American years” by Alex Ross, author of "The Rest is Noise" and declared “an important book, extensive in its research, lively in its presentation, smartly revisionist in its attitude – all in all, an inspiring homage to an celebration of Schoenberg’s later years” by Howard Pollack, author of "George Gershwin: His Life and Works."