July 15, 2011

Business Meeting
at the ICTM World Conference
St. Johns, Newfoundland (Canada) - Friday, July 15, 2011

Our last business meeting took place on Friday, July 15, 2011, during the ICTM World Conference held in St. Johns Newfoundland. As chairman of the Study Group I am happy to report on the various initiatives we have in the pipeline, all of which were undertaken as the result of consultations with the colleagues who have been most active and present in Study Group events over the last several years and, most of all, with Ruth F. Davis, Vice-Chair, who very much regretted not to be able to attend the St. Johns Conference.

NEW NAME. The first piece of news is that the Study Group has changed its name to Study Group for “Mediterranean Music Studies” (MMS). The change of name is no simple cosmetic detail. It wishes to suggest that, in the study of Mediterranean music, anthropology,  ethnomusicolgy, and history are of equal and paramount importance. Moreover the Study Group wishes to be open to all other disciplines and approaches that may of contribute to the understanding of musical interactions in the Mediterranean area.

NEW WEBSITE. The web Journal of the Study Group, Music & Anthropology, founded by Tullia Magrini in 1996, in many ways no longer responds to the present needs of the Study Group. It contains some very valuable contributions and it constitutes an important part of its history. All its issues can still be accessed, free of charge at the following address:

From now on, however, we have a new website, also named “Mediterranean Music Studies” (MMS), which is accessible at:

With the change of name comes a change in format. In the section “Articles” we invite contributions that take advantage of the multimedia possibilities of the Web. Articles are peer reviewed by the editorial board (Marcello Sorce Keller, Ruth F. Davis, Philip V. Bohlman, Franco Fabbri, Martin Stokes). Other sections of the website are devoted to information about our activities, publications, etc., and a special section will host multimedia documents that colleagues may wish to make available to the public. Comments will be solicited for such documents.

COLLOQUIUM IN PORTUGAL, 1-5 December, 2011. Thanks to the generous help and hospitality provided by Salwa El-Shawan Castelo Branco and Paulo Lima a Colloquium will take place in Portugal (Portel), devoted to a discussion of “Pan-Mediterranean Poetic Competitions and their Music: Historical Perspectives and Contemporary Practice”. The theme follows upon a welcome suggestion by Ed Emery (SOAS, London). The presenters include Caroline Bithell, Philip Ciantar, Kevin Dawe, Yildiray Erdener, Ed Emery, Salwa El-Shawan Castelo Branco, Paulo Lima, Ignazio Macchiarella, Denis Laborde, Maria José Barriga, Ali Jihad Racy. The preliminary program will soon be posted on the Study Group Website ( and the ICTM Website.

SYMPOSIUM IN MALTA, 10-12th July, 2012. Our next Symposium, will be hosted once again by the Mediterranean Institute of the University of Malta. A description of the theme “Musical Insularity: Between Conservatism and Innovation” and a call for papers is posted on both the Study Group and ICTM Websites. The deadline for receipt of proposals is January 31, 2011. Further details will be available on the websites.

PUBLICATIONS. The Journal of Mediterranean Studies (University of Malta) is preparing a special issue with a selection of the papers presented in Malta in 2011. A  volume with contributions presented at the Colloquium held in Cambridge in 2008 (Musical Exodus: Al-Andalus and its Jewish Diasporas) is in preparation for the Europea Series, Scarecrow Press, edited by Ruth Davis.

The alternation, on a yearly basis, of Symposia and Colloquia will considerably intensify the life of the Study Group and will provide more opportunities for more people to be present and active. At the same time, considering that there is no shortage of large conferences, we will try to keep our symposia and colloquia relatively small to enable maximum exchange and interaction among participants.

Hoping to see ever more ICTM colleagues attracted by Mediterranean Music Studies, I send everyone most cordial greetings

Marcello Sorce Keller


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