An American musicologist most at home making connections across disciplines and cultures, Chuck Pickeral is a Senior Lecturer in the UF School of Music. A pioneer in the university’s innovative Quest initiative, he developed the first course to receive permanent approval in that program: “An Echo of the Invisible World.” This course explores the relationship between music, art, and spirituality in many global and historical contexts, empowering students to examine their own background and experiences in relation to the diverse perspectives encountered in the class. The flexible structure of the course not only fulfills the Quest objective of encouraging the students to reflect on the “big questions” that are not always directly addressed in traditional academic courses, but it also aligns with Dr. Pickeral’s longstanding passion for helping students in all majors to make relevant connections between their areas of study and the arts.
Dr. Pickeral is also a frequent instructor in the UF Honors program, with recent course topics including: a literary exploration of avant garde music through Richard Power’s novel Orfeo; an examination of the effects of geography and language on musical expressions centered on Occitan France; the role of politics and multiple conceptions of authenticity on Bluegrass and Old-Time musical genres; and the influence of the ideals of 19th-century Romanticism on contemporary popular culture.
He has also been the Director of Operations for the School of Music since 2008. In this role, Dr. Pickeral creates the course and performance schedules for the school, organizes the Student Concerto Competition, serves as the primary liaison with UF Performing Arts, and oversees many other administrative tasks. He is also the Graduate Coordinator for the School of Music, advising students in the DMA and PhD programs.
Chuck Pickeral received his Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Fine Arts from Texas Tech University, a M.M. from Northern Illinois University, and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from James Madison University. Prior to coming to UF, he was on the faculty of Bluefield State College, Concord University, and Northern Michigan University after many years as an active freelance musician and teacher in the Chicago area.