College of Music

University of Colorado Boulder

Austin Okigbo

Director, World Vocal Ensemble
Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology
Imig Music Building N134

Mailing Address:
301 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309

Austin Okigbo is an assistant professor of ethnomusicology at CU-Boulder. He holds a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology and African Studies from Indiana University; a master of music (MM) from Westminster Choir College where he studied with Joseph Flummerfelt, James Jordan, Robin Leaver, and Frank Abrahams, specializing in sacred music and music education, with performance tracks in vocal performance and choral conducting. He also has training in philosophy and theology from the Pontifical Urban University, Rome. His research focuses on music in African, African American, and African Diaspora religious experiences; Black World music and resistance movements; and music and public health performances and the global politics of Aids.

A regular presenter at the annual meetings of the Society for Ethnomusicology and the African Studies Association, his publications have also appeared in a number of refereed journals including Africa Today Journal and Du Bois Review of the Cambridge Journals. He is currently working on a monograph on Religious Choral Music in a South African Zulu HIV/Aids Struggle. His next big projects look at music and the dynamics of inter-religious dialogue in Africa, and identity performances in the emerging “new Afro-Diaspora” communities in North America. Okigbo has conducted church, community, and university choirs in Nigeria, South Africa, and the US, including the International Vocal Ensemble at the Jacobs School of Music, leading an oversea winter study tour with the Williams College Choir, and collaborated with the Pittsburgh Squonk Opera as gumboot dance choreographer.  Prior to joining the University of Colorado, Okigbo taught at Williams College in Massachusetts as the Sterling Brown Visiting Professor. He has also taught at Harvard University and the University of Notre Dame.