Texas Tech University

Angela Mariani

Professor of Musicology

Email: angelamariani.smith@ttu.edu

Phone: (806) 834-3912

Office: School of Music, Room 216B

Angela Mariani


DM (Doctor of Music), Early Music, Indiana University Jacobs School of Music; MM (Master of Music), Early Music Vocal Performance, Indiana University; Certificate in Medieval Studies, Indiana University; BA (Bachelor of Arts) in Music Theory, University of Massachusetts.


A scholar and performer of medieval music, Dr. Angela Mariani is Professor of Musicology and the founder and Director of the Texas Tech Collegium Musicum (performing medieval, Renaissance, and early Baroque music). In 2009, she also established the School of Music's Graduate Certificate Program in Early Music Performance Practice. In 2017, Dr. Mariani received Early Music America's prestigious Thomas Binkley Award for “outstanding achievement in performance and scholarship by the director of a university or college collegium musicum.” An elected member of the TTU Teaching Academy since 2007, she is also a 2018 recipient of TTU's President's Excellence in Teaching Award.

A native of the state of Massachusetts, Dr. Mariani began her professional music career in the world of rock and folk. While an undergrad at the University of Massachusetts, her performance activities alternated between local rock bands, folk music gigs, and the UMass Collegium Musicum (much to the chagrin of her voice instructors). In the decade that followed, she was a freelance musician in the Boston area, creating a popular acoustic fingerstyle guitar course for Boston's Guitar Workshop and co-founding the folk-rock band Reynardine with Chris Smith. Inspired by a growing interest in medieval music, Dr. Mariani left Boston for the Early Music Institute (now the Historical Performance Institute) at Indiana University's prestigious Jacobs School of Music, where she studied medieval music performance practice with the groundbreaking early music scholar and performer Thomas Binkley. She also studied medieval music with Benjamin Bagby and Barbara Thornton of Sequentia.  While still at Indiana, she co-founded Altramar medieval music ensemble, recording and touring internationally (7 CDs on the Dorian Group label and several tracks for the Norton Anthology of Music).

Dr. Mariani's main research area is medieval music, and in particular historical performance, a discipline that involves extensive inquiry into historical instruments, early notation, unwritten improvisatory and ornamental practices, and the historical context of particular repertoires. As in other areas of Arts Practice Research, these products of scholarship manifest not only in terms of scholarly writings, but also in the process of creating, producing, and directing regular performances. A secondary research area is Contemplative Pedagogy in Higher Education, an approach to pedagogy that seeks to integrate techniques of contemplation, meditation and mindfulness into the process of teaching and learning at the university level. In 2017, Dr. Mariani's book Improvisation and Inventio in the Performance of Medieval Music was published by Oxford University Press; in that same year she also received TTU's Barnie E. Rushing Jr. Faculty Distinguished Research Award (Humanities). In 2019, the book received Texas Tech's First Place President's Faculty Book Award. 

Since 1991, Dr. Mariani has also hosted the nationally-syndicated early music radio program Harmonia, which is heard on over a hundred stations around the US and streams globally on the internet. She maintains her interest in both rock and traditional folk music, performing and recording traditional Irish music with the group Johnny Faa and European “balfolk” with the group Rattleskull. She has published and presented on the topics of early music performance practice, public radio, and rock and roll, and has appeared on National Public Radio, Deutsche Welle, Radio Netherlands, and the CBC.  

In 2018, Dr. Mariani was named a TTU Integrated Scholar, an award that recognizes faculty who “generate synergy” between the three areas of teaching, research, and service. 

Dr. Mariani teaches the following courses:

Introduction to Early Music Performance Practice; Medieval Music Seminar; Composer Seminar, Hildegard von Bingen; Composer Seminar, Claudio Monteverdi; Creating the Critical Listener (a large-enrollment course for first-year music students); Music and the Contemplative Mind, The Arts in Contemporary Context (a Fine Arts PhD Core course). In her first years of teaching at Tech, she also designed and inaugurated the original iteration of Tech's very popular, large-enrollment History of Rock and Roll course, and has served on dozens of Master's, Doctoral, and PhD thesis  and exam committees.

To contact Dr. Mariani, email her at angelamariani.smith@ttu.edu