Braun Music Center Rm. 130

Eleanor Selfridge-Field

Director of CCARH
Adjunct Professor
Area(s) of Expertise

Eleanor Selfridge-Field, Adjunct Professor of Music at Stanford University, participates in three fields of research—music and cultural history; music technology and digital data; and music copyright.  She is particularly well known for her work on systems of music representation (Beyond MIDI, MIT Press, 1987) and her New Chronology of Venetian Opera (Stanford University Press, 2007; Modern Language Association Book Prize winner, 2008).  

She has been extensively involved in collaborations focused on musical data (the RISM thematic search, the International Musicological Society computational musicology group (co-chair, 1987-2012), the International Society for Music Information Retrieval (ISMIR, 2000-2008), and the Music Encoding Initiative (MEI, founding board member, 2014-2021).  

She was co-founder (with Walter Hewlett) of the Center for Computer Assisted Research (CCARH) in the Humanities (est. 1984), which has been operated under the auspices of the Packard Humanities Institute since 2011.  CCARH hosts the MuseData repository of classical scores (, the Themefinder melodic-search tool (, and the Verovio Humdrum Viewer ( for viewing and editing encoded musical data.  Relying on MuseData’s multifaceted capabilities, the Center has encoded more than a thousand complete works of the classical repertory.

She is the author of six books on Venetian music (instrumental music, opera, neo-classicism; early music criticism, and forces shaping performance calendars (Song and Season, 2007).  She edited the series Computing in Musicology (MIT Press, 1985-2008; 

She has held grants and residencies from the American Council of Learned Societies; the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation; the Aston Magna Foundation; the American Academy in Rome; the Scuola Branca (Fondazione Cini, Venice); and the Stiftungen Thyll-Duerr and Fritz Thyssen.

In 2022 she was honored by a lifetime achievement award winner (arts) by her undergraduate alma mater, Drew University (magna cum laude in music and history).  She also holds degrees from Columbia (M.S.) and Oxford Universities (D.Phil., music).  Prior to joining CCARH she held appointments at Mills College and California State University at San Francisco.  She was a co-founder (with Elaine Thornburg and Teresa Nelson) of the San Francisco presenting organization Humanities West. 

Co-editor: Computing in Musicology. Books: Music Query: Methods, Models, and User Studies (CM13, 2004); The Virtual Score (CM12, 2001); Melodic Similarity (CM 11, 1998); Beyond MIDI: The Handbook of Musical Codes, 1997; The Works of Benedetto and Alessandro Marcello, 1990; Pallade Veneta: Writings on Music in Venetian Society, 1650-1750, 1985; Venetian Instrumental Music from Gabrieli to Vivaldi, 1975, 1980, 1994. Editions: Antonio Vivaldi, The Concertos Op. 10 (2001), Op. 3 (1998), The Four Seasons and Other Concertos, Op. 8 (1995). Articles and reviews in Arte venetaComputer Music JournalComputers and the HumanitiesComputing in MusicologyEarly MusicInternational Review of the Aesthetics and Sociology of MusicJournal of American Musicological SocietyJournal of the History of Ideas, Music and LettersMusical QuarterlyMusic Library Association NotesOrgan YearbookRecercareRevue de MusicologieMusic Theory SpectrumIl saggiatore musicaleStudi MusicaliStudi vivaldianiThe New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians and its spinoffs (Dictionary of Musical InstrumentsDictionary of OperaMusic and Man); The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Second Edition.