Richard Beaudoin

|Assistant Professor
Academic Appointments

Assistant Professor of Music

Richard Beaudoin analyzes audio recordings, investigating the expressive rhythm of sounds made by the performer's body, their instrument, and the recording medium itself. His book Sounds as They Are (Oxford University Press, 2024) includes chapters on sounds of breath, sounds of touch, sounds of effort, surface noise, and inclusive track analysis (ITA). His research contributes to the fields of music theory, analytic aesthetics, and sound studies.

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Sudikoff Lab, Room 218
HB 6187


  • Ph.D. in Music Theory and Composition, Brandeis University
  • MMus in Music Composition, The Royal Academy Music, London
  • B.A. in Music, Amherst College (summa cum laude)

Selected Publications

  • Beaudoin, Richard. 2024. Sounds as They Are: The unwritten music in classical recordings. New York: Oxford University Press.

  • Beaudoin, Richard. 2023. "Micro-temporal Measurements of Two Early Debussy Recordings as the Foundation for New Music." In Early Recordings: Academic Research and Creative Practice, edited by Eva Moreda Rodriguez and Inja Stanovic. London: Routledge.

  • Beaudoin, Richard. 2022. "Dashon Burton's Song Sermon: Corporeal Liveness and the Solemnizing Breath." Journal of the Society of American Music 16 (1): 1–23.

  • Beaudoin, Richard. 2021b. "The Pen as Camera: Finnissy and Overexposure." Music Theory Online 27.3. 

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Selected Lectures & Presentations

IIICON: INSTRUMENTS, INTERFACES, INFRASTRUCTURE Harvard University, 13 May 2023: “Wax Cylinder Music: Surface Noise as Fluttering Wings in Anna Krushelnytska’s Ukrainian Lament” [session: Noisy Interfaces]

THE ROYAL ACADEMY OF MUSIC London, UK, 10 Mar 2023: “Dialogues with Recordings: Digital Memory and the Archive” Lecture-concert devoted to my music, presented with Professor Neil Heyde and Yanyan Lin in the Angela Burgess Recital Hall at the Royal Academy of Music, London

UNIVERSITÄT FÜR MUSIK UND DARSTELLENDE KUNST WIEN Vienna, Austria, 6 Mar 2023: “On Sounds as They Are” Lecture at the Institut für Musikwissenschaft und Interpretationsforschung [seminar: (New) Organologies: Theories of Bodies and Instruments]

TUFTS UNIVERSITY Medford, Massachusetts, 14 Feb 2023: “On Sounds as They Are” [MUS 165: Sound Studies and Sound Art]

SMT/AMS/SEM 2022 CONFERENCE New Orleans, Louisiana, 12 Nov 2022: “On Sounds as They Are” [Society of Music Theory's Music & Philosophy Interest Group session devoted to my forthcoming book]

NAMING, UNDERSTANDING, AND PLAYING WITH METAPHORS Toronto, Canada (held virtually), 29 Apr 2022: “Mars, Blemishes, and Indexed Taboos: Recasting Noise Metaphors in Recording Analysis” [A symposium hosted by the UCLA PEER Lab & Durham University Music Department; session: Casting the Voice]

SMT/AMS 2021 CONFERENCE (held virtually), 4 Nov 2021: “‘We like no noise unless we make it ourselves’: Music Theory’s (Insidious) Norms” [session title: Whose Voices? Epistemic Injustice and Exclusion in Music Academia, convened by the Committee on Accessibility and Disability]

DIALOGUES: ANALYSIS & PERFORMANCE Toronto, Canada (held virtually), 7 Oct 2021: “Dashon Burton’s Song Sermon: Corporeal Liveness and the Solemnizing Breath” [session: Who and What Counts?]

SMT/AMS 2020 CONFERENCE Minneapolis, Minnesota (held virtually), 14 Nov 2020: “Microtiming the Marginal: The Expressive Rhythm of ‘Insignificant Noises’ in Recordings by Claire Chase, Evgeny Kissin, and Maggie Teyte" [session: Analyzing Recordings]

SMT 2019 CONFERENCE Columbus, Ohio, 10 Nov 2019: “Beethoven Overexposed: From Source to Sketch to Autograph in Michael Finnissy’s The History of Photography in Sound” [session: From the Source] 

EARLY RECORDINGS: PAST PERFORMING PRACTICES IN CONTEMPORARY RESEARCH Pushkin House, London, UK, 22 Jun 2019: “Early Recordings as New Music: Microtiming, Transcription, and Composition in Richard Beaudoin’s Digital Memory & the Archive” talk given with Professor Neil Heyde of the Royal Academy of Music and Rohan de Saram, Distinguished Guest Artist

THE PARIS CONSERVATOIRE [Conservatoire national supérieur de musique et de dance de Paris], 21 & 22 Mar 2019: "Le microminutage et la technique de l’emprunt dans ma musique" [Two invited lectures presented in French to the course Analyse musicale B (Professor Yves Balmer)]

SMT/AMS 2018 CONFERENCE San Antonio, Texas, 4 Nov 2018: “Solti Recording Time in Mahler: Microtiming and Phrase Rhythm Annotations in Two Conducting Scores of the Fourth Symphony” [session: Recorded Sound] 

UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA Vancouver, British Columbia, 6 Mar 2018: “Microtiming as a Compositional Material” at the conference Microtiming and Musical Motion

SMT/AMS 2016 CONFERENCE Vancouver, British Columbia, 5 Nov 2016: “Creaking Chairs and Metric Clarity: Microtiming Glenn Gould Recording Schoenberg Op. 19/1” [session: Performing Meter]

THE LONDON SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS London, UK, 2 Jun 2016: "The tenor, the vehicle, the naked base" at the conference The Transformation of Rhetoric in the 21st Century

UNITED STATES CONSULATE The Shanghai American Center, Shanghai, China, 12 May 2015: "What Makes Music Beautiful?" Hosted by The U.S. Consulate General Shanghai Public Affairs Section

EAST CHINA NORMAL UNIVERSITY Shanghai, China, 8 May 2015: "Linear Analysis of Lieder by Schubert and Schumann" part of the research program Study on Chinese and Western Modern Music from Perspective of Semiotics

SHANGHAI CONSERVATORY OF MUSIC Shanghai, China, 6 May 2015: “Composition and Microtiming” 

HARVARD UNIVERSITY Cambridge, Massachusetts, 20 Jan 2015: "Microtiming: Borrowing, Measuring, Composing", part of "Sensing the Data" for the FAS Group Expanding the Boundaries of Authorship 

THE UNIVERSITY OF YORK York, UK, 4 Jun 2014: “Recent Developments in Microtiming as a Compositional Material"

HARVARD UNIVERSITY Cambridge, Massachusetts, 26 Mar 2013: “Writing Across Music” as part of the Seminar Series Rethinking Translation

HOCHSCHULE LUZERN MUSIK Lucerne, Switzerland, 3 May 2012: "On the Art of Composing with Micro-Temporal Data" at the Schweizerische Musikforschende Gesellschaft

THE CENTRE FOR MUSIC AND SCIENCE at UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE Cambridge, UK, 23 Mar 2010: “Some Account of the Process of Microtiming and Musical Photorealism”