Mauro Orsini Windholz is a PhD candidate in Musicology at Princeton University. His work leverages methodologies from psychology and cognitive sciences to answer questions about how music listeners understand meaning in musical structures, and how this understanding impacts the field of music theory. His current research investigates how listeners perceive genre and emotional meaning in different styles of harmony. Combining empirical and theoretical methods, Mauro’s dissertation seeks to expand music theory and congnition’s understanding of musical harmony beyond the typical Western/classical point of view.
Before coming to Princeton, Mauro received a Masters in Music from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and a Bachelor’s degree in Composition from the State University of São Paulo. He has also done research on Brazilian XXth century music analysis, music and embodied cognition and music and narrative.
When he’s not researching or teaching, Mauro enjoys playing electric guitar in a pop-rock cover band on campus. He has also engaged in activist initiatives at Princeton, such as Divest Princeton, which was influential in Princeton’s decision to partially dissociate from fossil fuel companies in the Fall of 2022. He is also a partner dancing freak.