The Aesthetics of Music and Sound -

Cross-Disciplinary Interplay between the Humanities, Technology and Musical Practice:

Site of the SDU-IKV Research Program: The Performances of Everyday Living

William Westney:

H.C. Andersen Visiting Professorial Fellow 2009-10


    - Videos as broadcast on Danish Television (ALT-Aabenraa Lokal TV): HERE.

    - Press Coverage: HERE.

    - Summary report (pdf) of tenure as HCA-Academy Visiting Professorial Fellow: HERE.

    - Page on the HCA Visiting Professorial Fellow website: HERE.

    - See also "Archive for 'Updates'" HERE


    William Westney,Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Piano and Browning Artist-in-Residence
    School of Music, Texas Tech University, was appointed
     H.C. Andersen Visiting Professorial Fellow at The University of Southern Denmark during the 2009-2010 academic year, affiliated with The Aesthetics of Music and Sound. The story profiling Prof. Westney on this website at the time of his appointment appears below.

         Prof. Westney continues to be actively associated with the The Aesthetics of Music and Sound as well as with NNIMIPA: Nordic Network for the Integration of Music Informatics, Performance and Aesthetics. His ongoing research activities in affiliation with these networks are chronicled throughout and

         For documentary coverage of Prof. Westney's activities as H.C. Andersen Visiting Professorial Fellow, please see the links at the top of this page.


    William Westney named HCA-Academy Guest Professor 2009-10



    The Hans Christian Andersen (HCA) Academy was founded in 2001 in order to contribute to the cultivation of ideas and values which may be shared universitywide and across disciplinary borders at the University of Southern Denmark (SDU). One of the programs sponsored by the HCA Academy for the promotion of this goal is the annual award of a HCA-Academy Guest Researcher Residency to a scholar from abroad who can exert an invigorating influence within a disciplinary setting at SDU, while also taking part in SDU-sponsored events whose scope is universitywide as well as open to the general public. HCA Guest Researchers are appointed by the Vice-Chancellor (Rektor) upon the recommendation of the HCA Academy for a residency of six months’ duration.




    The Aesthetics of Music and Sound is pleased to announce the appointment of Prof. William Westney as HCA Academy Guest Professor for a period of six months distributed throughout the 2009-2010 academic year. The appointment of William Westney as HCA Academy Guest Professor brings an outstanding and internationally acclaimed teacher, researcher and concert pianist with marked interdisciplinary interests to SDU. Westney will be affiliated with the Institute of Philosophy, Education and the Study of Religions (IFPR) at the University of Southern Denmark and is a member of the research program The Aesthetics of Music and Sound. As both Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Piano and Browning Artist-in-Residence at Texas Tech University, Westney is uniquely qualified to work within and survey the functioning of both academic and performance milieux.


    Westney regards academic research and instrumental performance preparation as two closely related species of information-seeking and integration. He has perfected an engaging presentational style in which  conceptual research is combined with concert-style instrumental performance. The topics on which he currently is working range from the pedagogical (elucidating concepts in education and philosophy through the intense and very "real" prism of concert performance) to the philosophical (delving deeper in the musical implications of the work of pragmatist philosophers such as James, Dewey and Peirce) and the aesthetic/literary (employing the methods of discourse narrative in order to support interpretive choices faced by the practicing musician).  


    Westney's work is directly applicable to research being done by PhD students as well as faculty at IFPR. It is also relevant with regard to ideas currently in circulation at IFPR as to how the Institute can contribute more substantively to the support and development of the teaching of music and art in primary, secondary and upper-secondary school.


    Westney's international reputation as an educator stems largely from two innovative and revitalizing contributions to the field of music performance and its related psychological/pedagogical issues: (1) His book The Perfect Wrong Note: Learning to Trust Your Musical Self (Amadeus Press, 2003), is now in its second printing, having sold well over 10,000 copies worldwide, and (2) His trailblazing performance workshop (for all performers, regardless of instrument or musical genre), called "The Un-Master Class," which has been held in conferences, universities and conservatories from Beijing and Seoul to London, Vienna, Toronto, Melbourne, Mexico City and most major cities in the U.S. Interestingly, even though he is a prize-winning concert artist (Geneva International Competition, among many others), it is as an educational specialist that he was awarded a U.S. Fulbright "Senior Specialist" grant to teach, lecture, and perform at seven universities in Korea in 2006. He has also been entrusted with a pivotal educational role in the U.S. as chair of the Editorial Committee (since 2005) of American Music Teacher, the largest-circulation musical pedagogy journal in the world. In 2008, Texas Tech selected him for its highest teaching honor, the Chancellor's Council Distinguished Teaching Award.


    Another area Westney has focused on throughout his career is the issue of wellness and injury avoidance among musicians. Sharing his empirical findings regarding both the healthy mechanics of playing and the psycho-physical issues of practicing, he has presented at conferences devoted to performing arts medicine.


    William Westney already proved before starting his tenure as H.C. Andersen Guest Professor that he could relate well to audiences within the region of Southern Denmark. During November 2008 he toured three of the cities in Denmark where SDU has campi - Sønderborg, Esbjerg and Odense - under the auspices of the IFPR-SDU research program The Aesthetics of Music and Sound. In Sønderborg, Westney's concert lecture at the piano in Alsion on November 19, 2008 attracted an audience of 250-300 and he held a memorable "Un-Master Class" for music school students in the region. In Esbjerg, Westney gave a lecture at the Network for Cross-Disciplinary Studies of Music and Meaning (NTSMB) conference Music In and Out of the Body (see under IFPR-aegis at The Academy of Music and Music Communication (VMK) as well as a concert lecture at the piano and an "Un-Masterclass", and he concluded his 2008-tour here at SDU in Odense on November 26, 2008 with a concert lecture at the piano (for program, see HERE).


    For more information about William Westney, please see and 







    Department for the
    Study of Culture




    Research Director for 

    The Performances of

    Everyday Living

    Coordinator for

    The Aesthetics of

    Music and Sound


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