James Davies

Associate Professor

University of California, Berkely

James Davies is an associate professor of Music Scholarship at the University of California, Berkeley. He was born in Cape Town, taking his first degree (majoring in piano performance) at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, the city of his upbringing. Commonwealth scholarships allowed him to spend time in the UK: first at the RNCM in Manchester and then at the University of Cambridge where he completed his doctorate. His articles on colonial melodrama, diva-concepts, aging castrati, histories of pianistic touch, township opera and danced Beethoven symphonies was published in 19th-Century Music, Opera Quarterly, Keyboard Perspectives, Journal of the Royal Musical Association, Cambridge Opera Journal, and elsewhere. His current research extends from the focus of his 2014 book’s focus on “personal voice” (Romantic Anatomies of Performance, UC Press), which works to denaturalize liberal certainties about “creativity” and “expression,” to larger questions of materiality writ large.