Dr. Carolyn Rose Rynex and Dr. Michael Driscoll have been named the most recent winners of ACDA’s Julius Herford Dissertation Prize.
Driscoll’s dissertation, entitled “Jan Dismas Zelenka’s ‘Dixit Dominus’ Settings Within the Context of the Dresden Hofkapelle,” was called by review committee members “a model of outstanding research and presentation,” as well as “well-documented and to-be-applauded reasoning.” The research was conducted as part of Driscoll’s 2016 D.M.A. degree earned in choral conducting from Boston University. He worked under Professor Susan Wharton Conkling, Assistant Professor John Wallace, and Associate Professor Peter Sykes.
Committee members called Rynex’s dissertation–“Arabesque and the Early Music Influence in Debussy’s Trois Chansons de Charles d’Orléans”–“very well organized to lead to logical and well thought-out conclusions,” and “beautifully written.” Rynex completed her D.M.A. degree in choral conduction in 2016 at Arizona State University. She worked under Dr. David Schildkret, Dr. Catherine Saucier, and Professor Anne Kopta.
Winners of the annual Julius Herford Dissertation Prize are determined by the Julius Herford Prize Subcommittee of ACDA’s Research and Publications Standing Committee. The prize is awarded to an outstanding doctoral terminal research project in choral music. Projects are eligible if they are the principal research component of the degree requirements and where degrees were conferred in the year prior to nomination.
“As the committee deemed two dissertations to be of equal merit,” announced committee chair Magen Solomon, “this year two dissertations will be awarded the prize.” The winners split a $1,000 cash prize and each receive a commemorative plaque, both of which are presented at a 2018 ACDA regional conference.
Dr. Carolyn Rose Rynex
Prior to earning her D.M.A. degree, Rynex received her M.M. in vocal performance from the University of Minnesota in 2005, and a B.A. in music education from Trinity College in Illinois. She currently serves as a staff musician at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, and maintains a private voice studio. She taught previously at Lake Superior College (MN), Fond du Lac Tribal College (MN), and College of Lake County (IL).
Dr. Michael Driscoll
In addition to his D.M.A., Driscoll holds an M.M. degree in choral conducting from New England Conservatory (2003) and an M.S. and B.S. in electrical engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute. He currently serves as music teacher and director of choirs at Brookline High School (MA), music director of the Andover Choral Society, and lead musicianship teacher at Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society’s Vocal Arts Program. He has also served as music director of the Boston Saengerfest Men’s Chorus.