Renée Barbre (formerly Becker) is a PhD student in Music Theory. Her research interests lie at the intersection of music and philosophy. Some questions that keep her up at night include the following: What is the relationship between written text, oral traditions, and sounding music, and what assumptions are implicit in the way we think about music notation? When we evaluate music, are we appealing to aesthetic or ethical values—or both, or neither? Renée is exploring questions such as these by analyzing Renaissance and early modern European repertoire in its historical and cultural context.
Prior to her PhD, Renée taught music classes, voice lessons, and French on Boston’s North Shore (Waring School, Longy School of Music of Bard College), which is also where she met and married Daniel Barbre. Renée is a classically trained mezzo-soprano, performing regularly as a member of Yale’s Schola Cantorum. She holds an MA in Music Theory Pedagogy from the Eastman School of Music, a B.Mus. in Voice Performance from Houghton College, and various certificates in composition from the Conservatoire de Bordeaux Jacques Thibaud. She has roots in South Dakota and Colorado, grew up in France, calls Massachusetts “home,” and has close family and friends scattered all over the world. Renée’s ecumenical Christian faith is an important part of her life, as are her commitments to family and friends. Outside of the classroom, she spends time writing poetry and essays, tabletop gaming, practicing martial arts, being outdoors, and reading books that aren’t about music theory.