Nathan Link, Centre College’s NEH Associate Professor of Music, was presented a 2015 Governor’s Awards in the Arts by Gov. Steve Beshear in Frankfort, Ky., on Oct. 22. He is one of only nine people in the state of Kentucky to receive the award.
The award recognizes Kentuckians whose contributions—as artists or advocates—have raised the level of quality and awareness of the arts in Kentucky and the nation.
“Professor Link is an excellent example of what Centre College does so very well—remarkable teaching by men and women who make learning an adventure, a joy, an experience to be prized,” Centre President John A. Roush said. “All of us hold Nathan in high regard and are proud of all that he accomplishes.”
Link is the recipient of the Education Award. Not long after joining the faculty at Centre in 2006, he established the Kentucky Music Ensemble, through which he has cultivated a love of Kentucky folk music among student members of the ensemble and audiences.
“To watch Professor Link work and interact with his students and colleagues in the Kentucky Music Ensemble is magical,” Dean of the College Stephanie Fabritius said. “He has their trust and respect, and they are willing to stretch themselves as they work together to perform. The same is true in his other classes, as students eagerly forge new paths in music with him.”
At Centre, Link specializes in eighteenth-century opera, with strong secondary interests in nineteenth-century music and aesthetics, the theory of opera, African music, and country and popular music. He was recognized in 2009 as a Centre Scholar, an endowed program that recognizes faculty members for their outstanding contributions to the College and the broader academic community. In that same year, he received a Stodghill Fellowship, which is awarded to faculty members to pursue research, intensive practice of their art or other special projects promoting the Centre’s teacher-scholar model.
Additionally, Link has developed courses centered on the study of Kentucky folk music, and as a Mellon Global Fellow in 2010-2012, he was instrumental in pioneering a minor in African & African American studies at Centre, which explores the little-known, but significant overlap between traditional Appalachian music and African-American music.
“It is a true honor to receive the Governor’s Award in the Arts and one for which I am sincerely grateful,” Link said. “By recognizing my work with the Kentucky Music Ensemble and the African & African American Studies program, the award is clearly recognizing, as well, the Centre community as a whole and the shared commitment by the administration, faculty and students to creative approaches to teaching in the arts.”
Prior to joining Centre’s faculty, Link was an instructor at Yale University. His publications have appeared in Oxford University Press’s Opera Quarterly, the Journal of the American Library Association, the Göttinger Händel Beiträge and Opera Today, and he is currently authoring two books.
Link earned his Ph.D. in music history, with distinction, at Yale University in 2006. He received his M.A. from the University of Washington in 2001 and his bachelor’s degree from Macalester College, cum laude, in 1992, with majors in English and music theory and composition.
Video courtesy of Kentucky Office of Creative Services.
by Amy Clark Wise
October, 22 2015