Robert Hatten
  • Professor of Theory
Office Location: MRH 3.710
  • Theory

Education PhD, Indiana University; MM, Indiana University; BM, Baylor University

Research Areas Theories of musical emotion and expressive meaning; gesture, topics, tropes, narrativity, virtual agency; 18th and 19th century music (especially Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Chopin)

About Robert S. Hatten joined the faculty in Fall 2011 as Professor of Music Theory, having taught previously at Indiana University. His first book, Musical Meaning in Beethoven: Markedness, Correlation, and Interpretation (Indiana University Press, 1994), was co-recipient of the Wallace Berry Publication Award from the Society for Music Theory in 1997. His second book, Interpreting Musical Gestures, Topics, and Tropes: Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert (Indiana University Press, 2004), helped launch the book series “Musical Meaning and Interpretation,” for which Dr. Hatten serves as general editor. Dr. Hatten has served as Vice-President of the Society for Music Theory (2005-07) and President of the Semiotic Society of America (2007-08). His research interests include semiotic theories of musical meaning (including agency, expressive genres, gesture, style, topics, tropes, and narrativity), performance and analysis (as pianist), music and the poetic text (as poet), and twentieth-century opera (as librettist and composer). He has given invited papers and keynotes across North American and Europe, and extended lecture series in Poland, Finland, Spain, and Mexico.

Recent Publications A Theory of Virtual Agency for Western Art Music. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 2018.“Fundamental Concepts for the Semiotic Interpretation of Musical Meaning: A Personal Journey,” in The Routledge Handbook of Music Signification, ed. Esti Sheinberg and William P. Dougherty (2020). “Topics,” with Eloise Boisjoli in The Cambridge Haydn Encyclopedia, ed. Caryl Clark and Sarah Day-O’Connell, 376-82. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2019.“The Voice in My Life,” in Singing: The Timeless Muse: Essays on the Human Voice, Singing, and Spirituality, ed. Darlene Wiley, 90-109. Inside View Press, 2018.