Emily I. Dolan is an assistant professor of music at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn). She specializes in late Enlightenment and early Romantic music and aesthetics. In particular, she focuses on issues of orchestration and instrumentality and is interested in the intersections of music, science, and technology. Her article “E.T.A. Hoffmann and the Ethereal Technologies of ‘Nature Music’” (Eighteenth-Century Music, 2008) looks at whimsical instruments from the early nineteenth century that were invented to capture and control the voice of nature. In April 2008, she organized an interdisciplinary conference at Penn, “Herder, Music, and Enlightenment,” which explored the role of music in Herder’s philosophy.
While at Radcliffe, Dolan will complete “The Orchestral Revolution: Haydn and the Technologies of Timbre, 1750–1810,” a book that explores the history of orchestration and examines how the consolidation of the modern orchestra changed musical thought and practice. The project investigates attitudes toward instruments, instrumental sonority, and the orchestral ensemble to illuminate the material and technological structures that underpin modern musical discourse.
Dolan received her PhD from Cornell University in 2006. In 2005, she was awarded the Alvin H. Johnson AMS 50 Dissertation Fellowship by the American Musicology Society.