The Dena Epstein Award for Archival and Library Research in American Music was created in 1995 through a generous gift from Morton and Dena Epstein to the Music Library Association. Requests are currently being accepted for one or more grants to be awarded for the year 2021. The total amount of funding available is $5,700. The decision of the Dena Epstein Award Committee and the Board of Directors of the Music Library Association will be announced at the MLA annual meeting which will be held March 3-7, 2021. 

A grant may be awarded to support research in archives or libraries (both nationally and internationally) on any aspect of American music. For purposes of this award, “American music” is defined as music directly relating to or that has some direct connection with the United States of America. This year, in response to the Black Lives Matter movement, special attention will be given to projects related to African-American/Black music topics.

There are no restrictions as to applicant's age, nationality, profession, or institutional affiliation. All proposals will be reviewed entirely based on merit. Awards may be presented to an individual applicant or divided among multiple applicants. At its discretion, the committee may choose not to award a grant during any particular year. Unsuccessful first-time applicants may resubmit a proposal for the same project up to two years after their initial submission. An applicant may receive only one award for any one project. 

Applicants must submit the following documents:
  • A brief research proposal (under 5 pages) that includes:
    • a description of the project
    • a detailed budget for the project, indicating:
      • the amount of funding requested (capital purchases such as computer equipment and furniture are ineligible)
      • justification for the funding
      • additional sources of funding
    • a demonstration of how the applicant's research will contribute to the study and understanding of American music
    • an explanation of the relevance of the project to African-American/Black music, if applicable
  • A curriculum vitae
  • Two letters of support from librarians and/or scholars knowledgeable about American music
Applications should be submitted by e-mail attachment and must be in Microsoft Word or PDF format. Please send required documentation to Laurie Sampsel, Chair of the Dena Epstein Award Committee, at Laurie.Sampsel -at-

Deadline for application is 08/31/2020

AMS-Announce mailing list and bulletin board:

How to submit a post

Visit the AMS-Announce archive

TO UNSUBSCRIBE, switch to/from Digest mode, change your subscription address, etc.: log in and edit your subscription.

AMS-Announce is a free service provided to the musicological community by the American Musicological Society.