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Joyce Chen

Assistant Professor of Historical Keyboards
Phone: 541-346-0943
Office: 214 Frohnmayer Music Bldg
Research Interests: Acoustics, history of science, historical keyboards, Taiwan

A native of Taiwan, Dr. Joyce Wei-Jo Chen 陳瑋若 is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Music (Historical Musicology) and the Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program in Humanities at Princeton University. Under the guidance of Wendy Heller, Dr. Chen is currently working on her dissertation, “Musica Experientia/Experimentum: Acoustics and Artisanal Knowledge in the Global Seventeenth Century,” which explores the intersection between science, music, and aesthetics involving instrument-making, sensory experience, and the development of acoustical theory. For this project, Dr. Chen spent 4 months working as an apprentice at Zuckermann Harpsichords International—the last harpsichord manufacturing factory in the United States— in Stonington, Connecticut. In addition, she just finished building her first harpsichord from a Troubadour Virginal Kit.  

As a solo harpsichordist, Dr. Chen has performed throughout the United States, France, Belgium, and Taiwan. Dr. Chen received the 2018 Individual Artist Fellowship from the Delaware Division of the Arts and was a featured soloist in the 2019 Emerging Artist Showcase by Early Music America. Dr. Chen is releasing her first solo harpsichord album featuring English virginalist music in Fall 2023.  

Dr. Chen holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Harpsichord Performance from Stony Brook University and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley. Dr. Chen has been on faculty at St. Joseph’s University, the University of Delaware, and Delaware State University, where she also introduced a pilot program of HBCU early music access project in collaboration with Early Music America and the Princeton GradFUTURES program.

  • Doctor of Philosophy, Historical Musicology & Interdisciplinary Humanities, Princeton University, Expected May 2024
    • History of Science Graduate Certificate
    • dissertation “Musica Experientia/Experimentum: Acoustics, Aesthetics, and Artisanal Knowledge
  • Master of Arts, Historical Musicology, Princeton University, May 2020
  • Doctor of Musical Arts, Harpsichord Performance, Stony Brook University, May 2017
    •  Final Research DMA Recital “Le Rossignol en Amour: Mimesis, Imitation, and Variation
    • Lecture-recital: “Free Play: Postmodernism in Ligeti’s harpsichord pieces & Cox’s Playing a Round for prepared piano and harpsichord
  • Master of Arts, Music History and Theory, Stony Brook University, August 2017
    • Thesis: “Listen Hear: The Sonic Strokes on an Imaginary Canvas”
  • Master of Music, Harpsichord Performance, Stony Brook University, May 2013
  • Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering. Pi Tau Sigma. University of California, Berkley, May 2011
    • Senior Design Project: A prototype of closed-loop self-tuning harpsichord device (via LabView)