Dr. Brenda Ravenscroft

  • B.Mus. (University of Cape Town)
  • M.Mus. (King's College, London)
  • Ph.D. (U.B.C.)

Associate Professor (Theory and Composition)

Email: ravenscr@queensu.ca

Dr. Brenda Ravenscroft

Dr. Ravenscroft teaches music theory and analysis at Queen's School of Music, where she is Associate Professor. She joined the faculty in 1993, having previously taught at McGill University following graduate studies at King's College, London and the University of British Columbia. She specializes in the music of twentieth-century American composers, with her research interests including the music of Elliott Carter, rhythmic organization in post-tonal music, the relationship between words and music in 19th and 20th-century compositions, and women and music.

Highlights of her Carter research include being invited to present a paper at the 2006 Elliott Carter Festival in Minneapolis, MN—where she met the 97-year old composer—and contributing a chapter on Carter’s vocal music to the book Elliott Carter Studies, published by Cambridge University Press in 2012. She has also published articles and reviews on contemporary music in Perspectives of New Music, Music Analysis, Tempo, Journal of the American Musicological Society, Indiana Theory Review, the Canadian University Music Review, Ex Tempore, and the South Africa Journal of Musicology, and has presented papers at conferences on the music of Carter, Larsen, Cowell, Harrison and Cage, as well as on twentieth-century vocal composition.

Dr. Ravenscroft’s current research project is a series of volumes of analytical essays on music by women composers, for which she has a contract with Oxford University Press. In addition to co-editing four books with Laurel Parsons, her contributions include a chapter on Libby Larsen's song settings of poetry by Emily Dickinson, and an essay on music by South Africa composer, Priaulx Rainier.

She is active in the Society for Music Theory, having chaired the Society’s Committee on the Status of Women (2006-09) and served on the Society’s Executive Board (2011-14).

Her teaching in the area of theory and analysis includes core theory courses, Renaissance counterpoint, Schenkerian analysis, and advanced analytical courses on such topics as Schubert's later compositions, and contemporary American music.

Dr. Ravenscroft currently holds the position of Associate Dean (Teaching and Learning) in the Faculty of Arts and Science. She has developed a second area of research activity in the field of teaching and learning in higher education, and has presented papers and given workshops at national and international pedagogical conferences. She is the principal investigator in a longitudinal research study assessing student engagement and learning in high-enrolment blended courses, and a co-investigator in a learning outcomes assessment project.