Dr. Sancho-Velázquez

Contact Information

Voice: 657-278-2725
Dept: 657-278-2794

Ángeles  Sancho-Velázquez, Ph.D

Professor of Arts and Humanities, Department of Liberal Studies



2001, Ph.D in Ethnomusicology / Systematic Musicology. Doctoral Dissertation: The Legacy of Genius: Improvisation, Romantic Imagination and the Western Musical Canon., University of California, Los Angeles

1996, M.A. in Ethnomusicology / Systematic Musicology. M. A. Thesis: An Interpretive Approach to the Emancipation of Dissonance., University of California, Los Angeles

1985, Degree in Piano. Teaching Credential in Music Education (Título de Profesor Superior de Solfeo y Teoría de la Música, Transporte, Repentización y Acompañamiento), Conservatorio Superior de Música. Murcia, Spain

1981, Degree in Philosophy (licenciatura) , University of Murcia, Spain

Research Areas

Broad research areas are the aesthetics and philosophy of music, music history within a broad cultural context, and theories of the creative imagination. My  approach to various topics and my interest in interdisciplinarity are grounded on a common theoretical framework of contemporary hermeneutics.

My main current project is a book-length investigation of the decline of improvisation in the Western musical tradition. I interpret this phenomenon within the context of changing aesthetic ideals and performance practices in the nineteenth century.

Courses Regularly Taught

• LBST 100- Introduction to the Humanities
• LBST 301 – Inquiry and Composition
• LBST 302A- Historical Dimension of Liberal Studies (Arts and Humanities section, Antiquity to Renaissance)
• LBST 302B- Historical Dimension of Liberal Studies (Arts and Humanities section, Late Renaissance to 19th century)
• LBST 303- Liberal Studies in the Humanities and Arts
• LBST 323- Cross-Cultural Humanities (“Cosmopolitanism and the Creative Imagination”)
• LBST/PHIL 401- Knowledge in the Arts and Sciences
• LBST 486- Senior Seminar in Humanities and Arts


  • “Virtuosos, Improvisers, and the Politics of Seriousness in Western Classical Music”. Müzik-Bilim Dergisi (Journal of Musicology) No. 6, Spring. Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University Publications, 2015.
  • “The Poetics of the Possible: Arnold Schoenberg and Thomas Mann”. The International Journal of Literary Humanities, vol. 14:1, 2015.
  • Córdoba adentro: Arte y poesía del patio. Poems. (Cordoba Within: Art and Poetry of the Patio). Córdoba: La Buganvilla ediciones, 2014.
  •  “Turandot: El último enigma de Puccini” (“Turandot: Puccini’s Final Enigma”). InLibro de la temporada, ABAO/OLBE, Bilbao, Spain, 2013-2014. 
  • “Hybridity all the Way Down? Music, Hybridity and Identity in an Era of Globalization”.  International Journal of Humanities, vol. 2:2, 2006.
  • “The Roots of Autonomy: Rethinking Autonomous Music Before and After Formalism.” In Perspectives in Systematic Musicology, edited by Roger Savage Kendall. Selected Reports in Ethnomusicology, vol. XII, 2005.
  • “Disonancia y misoginia: Salomé de Strauss y el mito de la mujer fatal” (“Dissonance and Misogyny:  Strauss’s Salome and the myth of the Femme Fatale”).  In Música y Mujeres: Género y Poder, edited by Marisa Manchado.  Madrid, Spain: horas y Horas la editorial, 1998.
  • “Interpreting Metaphors: Cross-Cultural Aesthetics as Hermeneutic Project.”Selected Reports in Ethnomusicology, vol. X:  Musical Aesthetics in Los Angeles, 1994.


Presentations & Lectures

• “Order Restored: Virtuosity, Improvisation, and the Politics of Seriousness in Western Classical Music”. Paper presented at Musicult'15 Conference, Istanbul Technical University, Istanbul, Turkey, May 2015.

• “Mann and Schoenberg in L.A.: A Tale of Concordance-Discordance”. Paper presented at The Work of Exile: Loss, Challenge, and Possibility in Southern California. Interdisciplinary Conference organized by the Department of Liberal Studies, California State University Fullerton, April 2015.

• “Dados a la Música: Hybridity, Agency, and Identity in Early Colonial Mexico.” Transnational Speaker Series. Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, California State University Fullerton, Fullerton. April 2015. Invited talk.

• “Charlatans, Neo-Kantians, and a Failed Revolution: How Western Classical Improvisation Got Shut Down.” Paper read at Perspectives on Musical Improvisation II. Oxford University. Oxford, U.K., September 2014.

• “Thomas Mann, Arnold Schoenberg, and the Poetics of the Possible.” Paper read at the International Conference New Directions in the Humanities, Madrid, Spain, June 2014.

• “A Double Blow to Improvisation: Anti-Romanticism, Positivism, and the End of Impromptu Performance”. Paper read at the meeting of the American Musicological Society, Pacific South California Chapter, California State University Long Beach, Long Beach, February 2013.

• “Transformation into Structure: Musical Improvisation as Play and Work”. Paper read at Making Sense of Play, an interdisciplinary conference. Mansfield College, Oxford, U.K., July 2012.

• “The Anxiety of Contingency: Improvisation, the Musical Canon, and the Fragility of a Positivist Culture”. Paper read at the International Conference New Directions in the Humanities, Granada, Spain, June 2011.

• “The Relevance of Interdisciplinarity: Impact of Systematic Musicology on Interdisciplinary Scholarship and Teaching”. Systematic Musicology Panel. Ethnomusicology Alumni Symposium, UCLA. November 2010. Invited talk.

• “Thomas Mann’s Doctor Faustus and the Fate of Modern Art”. Paper read at the International Conference New Directions in the Humanities, Paris, France, July 2007.

• “Why the Autonomy of Music is an Ethnomusicological Issue”. Paper read at the Annual Conference of the Society for Ethnomusicology, Honolulu, November 2006.

• “Moving Beyond the Modern/Postmodern Debate: The Case of the Autonomy of Music.” Paper read at the International Meeting of the International Society for the Study of European Ideas, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain, August 2004.

• “Hybridity All the Way Down? Music, Cultural Identity and Mestizaje in an Era of Globalization.” Paper read at the International Conference New Directions in the Humanities, Prato, Italy, July 2004.

• “Improvisation and the Romantic Aesthetics of Imperfection.” Paper read at the Annual Joint meeting of the Northern California and Pacific South-West Chapters of the American Musicological Society, University of San Francisco, San Francisco, May 2004.

• “The Purity of Mestizaje: A Dialectical Approach to Tradition and Hybridity.” Paper read at the International Conference of the College Music Society. Costa Rica, June 2003.

• “Music: The Other Conquest of Mexico?” Invited Talk. Spanish Honors Club, Dept. of Modern Languages, California State University Fullerton, April 2003. Invited talk.

• ”Making Sense of Eccentricity: Carlo Gesualdo and the Aesthetics of Mannerism.” Paper read at the Annual Meeting of the College Music Society Southern Pacific Regional Chapter, California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, March 2002.

•“Methodology of a Doctoral Dissertation.” Department of Music, University Autónoma of Madrid, Spain, February 2002. Guest Lecture.

• “What Is Art Good For?” Conference Contemporary Humanities: Transmission and Reception of Art.  University Autónoma of Madrid, Spain, February 2002. Keynote address.

• “Works, Music, and the Gap between Them.” Paper read at the Joint meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology Southern California Chapter, and the American Musicological Society Pacific Southwest Chapter. University of San Diego, February 2000.

• “Improvisation after the Baroque: A Case of Historical Amnesia.” Paper read at the International Symposium Improvisation Across Borders. University of California San Diego, April 1999.

• “Trance, Delusion, and Power in the Performances of Diamanda Galás.” Paper read at the Society for Ethnomusicology Southern California Chapter Meeting. California State University, Northridge, February 1997.

• “Ethnomusicological Discourse and the Other: Beyond Ethnocentric Subjects and Decentered Selves.” Paper read at the National Annual Meeting of the Society for Ethnomusicology. Milwaukee, October 1994.

Office Hours

Fall 2016

T/Th: 2:30-3:30 pm and by appointment

Current Course Schedule

LBST 301 T/Th 10:00-11:15

LBST 302A T/Th 1:00-2:15

LBST 303 T/Th 5:30-6:45

LBST 303 T 7:00-9:45

Next Semester Course Schedule

London, UK: Study Abroad program, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, CSUF.