2020 AMIS Award Winners

The Curt Sachs Award

Eszter Fontana

AMIS is pleased to announce that Prof. Dr. Em. Eszter Fontana is the recipient of the Curt Sachs Award for 2021.

Eszter’s lifetime accomplishments are manifested in her focus on musical instruments as the primary subject of her research. In that regard her work ideally reflects the society’s central goals as a musical instrument society.

The Nicholas Bessaraboff Prize

David Lasocki

The American Musical Instrument Society awards the Nicholas Bessaraboff Prize annually for the most distinguished book-length publication written in English. The 2021 Bessaraboff Prize goes to David Lasocki for Jean-Baptiste Lully and the Flute: Recorder, Voice Flute, and Traverso, published in 2019 by Instant Harmony.

The Frances Densmore Prize

Rachel Beckles Willson

The 2021 Densmore Prize goes to Rachel Beckles Willson for the article "Orientation through Instruments: The ʿūd, the Palestinian Home, and Kamīlyā Jubrān" in the world of music (new series), vol. 8, no. 1, 2019.

This article is a compelling and sophisticated account of the role played by the ‘ūd in constructing and complicating notions of home. The author provides a richly nuanced consideration, from multiple perspectives, of this most iconic of Arab instruments, demonstrating how it becomes an ‘orientation device’ both for herself and others in relation to conceptions of place and space, and how these become infused – or not – with notions of home.

The Frederick R. Selch Award

Julin Lee

The winner of the Frederick R. Selch Award for 2021 is Julin Lee, for her paper "Sounds of Futuristic Nostalgia: The Cultural Legacy of Blade Runner and the Yamaha CS-80." The committee was impressed by the originality of the paper, which combined methodologies from organology, musicology, and film studies to interrogate the legacy of the Yamaha CS-80. The extensive research and engaging presentation painted a comprehensive and convincing picture of the synthesizer's past and present reception in the context of the film Blade Runner.

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