Jul 022022

We are delighted at NEMO-Online and CERMAA to announce that Amine Beyhom, Chief Editor of NEMO-Online and Director of the CERMAA, was awarded the 2022 Frances Densmore Prize by the American Musical Instrument Society for his 2020 Dossier on the ʿūd in NEMO-Online.

The award announcement stands:

The Frances Densmore Prize is awarded annually for the best article-length publication in English that furthers the goals of the Society. The 2022 Densmore Prize is awarded to Amine Beyhom for his article “Was the Early Arabian ‘Ūd ‘Fretted’?” published in Near-Eastern Musicology Online 5, no. 9 (November 2020).

“Was the Early Arabian ‘Ūd ‘Fretted’?” is “an erudite and impressive piece of scholarship. The author persuasively demonstrates that the early ʿūd was unfretted but that tie-frets may have been used for teaching or training purposes. Beyhom’s argument has important implications for not just Islamic and Western organology but indeed for the critical work of recognizing early Arabian treatises on praxis as central to the development of Greek and, therefore, to the development of European musical systems. The extraordinary analysis of primary source material that made this article stand out within a strong field of candidates exemplifies crucial considerations in organology, musicology, and music theory today.”

Amine Beyhom trained as a civil engineer as well as a musician (guitars and bass) and a composer. After obtaining his MA from the École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (ENPC) in Paris, he worked as a research engineer in France, then changed the course of his life to become a professional musician and composer, firstly in France then in Lebanon, while learning the ʿūd and founding his own music production company. He completed his PhD in 2003 at the Sorbonne University, Paris, and his Habilitation at the same university in 2010. He later received the title of Professor in Music and Musicology.

Dr. Beyhom has published articles on numerous topics including Byzantine chant, the theory of music, and Orientalism in musicology. He has taught at universities in Lebanon and France, and in 2011 he founded the Centre for Research on the Music of Arabian and Akin countries (CERMAA), which he still leads. In 2018 he established [the] VIAMAP (the Video Animated Music Analysis Project), which has produced more than sixty video analyses. He was awarded the Lois Ibsen Al-Faruqi triennial Award by the Society for Ethnomusicology in 2017. He is active as a music analyst and videographer, as Chief Editor of Near-Eastern Musicology Online, and as the head of the CERMAA research center. He is delighted to conduct workshops with international students on various themes, the last to date (before Covid) being about Artificial Intelligence and Music.