Screen Shot 2019-02-10 at 9.26.49 AM.png

You are kindly invited to submit proposals for “Genre Lines,” a new music weekend summit embedded within the 2019 Nief-Norf Summer Festival taking place the weekend of June 14–15, 2019 in Knoxville, TN. In this summit, we will examine music that has defied, reaffirmed, and/or blurred the boundaries of genre in experimental music of the past 50 years. We seek to ask who and what gets included and excluded when genre lines are drawn.

The weekend summit will feature talks and performances centered on the music of our guest artists, including composer-clarinetist James Falzone, composer Sarah Kirkland Snider, and trumpeter-composer Wadada Leo Smith, who will give the conference keynote.

We encourage proposals for performances, talks, group panels/sessions, research presentations. Possible topics include:

  • Featuring music by composers and performers who have blurred genre lines

  • Musical venues or festivals that have hosted multi-genre performances, such as the Bang on a Can Marathon, the Big Ears Festival, the Create Festival, the Ecstatic Music Festival, and more

  • Examining hybridized, hyphenated genres that attempt to fuse multiple genres, like “indie-classical” or “alternative-classical”

  • The code-switching of musical terminology when working within multiple genres, especially between jazz and classical genres

  • The pedagogical implications of genre divisions within music education today and historically


  • solo or group performances (12-minute limit)

  • individual presentations/papers (20 minutes)

  • themed sessions/panels (3-4 people, each 15 minutes)

  • lecture-recitals (30 minutes)

Please send proposals (max. 300 words) as PDF attachments to by *March 15, 2019*. In your submission, please include your name, institutional affiliation, and any audiovisual requirements. For themed sessions, please submit all proposals together with an additional note describing your session theme (100 words).

Weekend Summit

For the past seven years, the Nief-Norf Summer Festival has featured a weekend summit within the larger 14-day festival. As part of the festival, dozens of performers, composers, festival faculty, and participating scholars attend these summit gatherings. Past topics have included the music of John Cage (2012), Music and Technology (2013), Music and/as Process (2014), Music as Theater (2015), Astro-Bio-Geo-Physical Music (2016), the Sixth International Conference on Music and Minimalism (2017), and New Asia (2018).