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Felicia Sandler

  • Music Theory

Felicia Sandler’s primary research area is the music of Ghana. She has been a fellow at the Institute of African Studies, (2016 and 2018), while working on a critical edition of the collected works of Dr. Ephraim Amu. She coordinated an international festival celebrating Dr. Amu at NEC/Tufts (Spring of 2014). Sandler participated in the UN Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights’ redrafting of the Principles and Guidelines for the Protection of the Cultural Heritage of Indigenous People as an Expert in the Arts stemming from her work at WIPO (summer 1997). She is a member of the Agbekor Drum and Dance Society stationed in the greater Boston area, directed by Master drummer Mr. Emmanuel Attah Poku of the Ashanti Palace, Kumasi, Ghana.

Recent papers/editions:

  • Three choral works by Dr. Amu, edited by Felicia Sandler: Adawura bɔ me, Asɛm yi di ka, Yɛn ara asase ni, published by E.C. Schirmer Publishing (Fall 2018)
  • The Collected Works of Dr. Ephraim Amu: Report on the Critical Edition, International Council for Traditional Music African Music Study Group (Ghana, West Africa, August 2018)
  • Ephraim Amu: Prophet, Witness, Quiet Revolutionary, Society for Christian Scholarship (Boston University, February 2016)
  • Research and Concert Programming that Involves the Wider Community: An Example from the New England Conservatory of Music and Tufts University, The Past, Present, and Future of Public Musicology (Westminster Choir College, February 2015)
  • Indigenous Musics in the Global Marketplace: The Search for a Framework in which Cross-cultural Appropriation Respectfully Works, Music and Cultural Rights: Trends and Prospects (University of Pittsburgh, April 2005). Published as a chapter in Music and Cultural Rights, Illinois University Press 2009.

Described as a composer of music with a “breathless beauty,” (Argawala, MIT Tech 2010), Felicia Sandler writes music that is full of color and energy. Her choral works have been performed internationally with choirs in Asia, Europe, Latin America and all across the U.S. Her percussion work Pulling Radishes commissioned by the NEC Percussion Ensemble (Naxos, 2011) serves as soundtrack for the ZeroOne documentary film, Peter Handke – In the Woods. Might Be Late (Berlin, 2016) and was described by Ira Byelick as rich with “interesting color… one of the most effective works on the record.” (American Record Guide, Sept. 2011). Sandler’s most recent commission is the composition of music for a modern passion play based on a libretto by playwright David Mulei. Pilate’s Daughter is to be premiered in the Spring of 2020 at the Basilica in Boston’s historic Mission District. Sandler has received awards from Meet The Composer, the Presser Foundation, and the American Composers Orchestra, among others. Her works are available from E.C. Schirmer Music Publications, Mark Foster, Alliance Music (Simon Carrington Series), and Dancing Flea Music Company, and are on the Naxos and Mark Records labels.

B.M. in composition and theory, Conservatory of Music, University of the Pacific; MLM in Liturgical Music, The Catholic University of America; PhD in composition and theory, University of Michigan. Former faculty of Bowling Green State University and University of Michigan.

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