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CCM Village on the University of Cincinnati campus. Photo by Jay Yocis.

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Stefan P. Fiol

Title: Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology
Office: 4246 Emery Hall
Tel: 513-556-9529

Stefan Fiol received his Ph.D. in Musicology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign after conducting three years of ethnomusicological research in India, and shorter fieldwork projects in Chile, Paraguay and Zimbabwe.

His current research investigates the development of regional music industries in the central Himalayas, and the ways that this music both sustains and undermines attempts to delineate regional political and cultural movements within India. His research has been funded by fellowships from Fulbright-Hays, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, and the American Institute of Indian Studies.

Fiol has been a visiting scholar in the South Asia Program at Cornell University, and has previously taught at the University of Illinois (2002-04), the University of Notre Dame (2005-06) and the Eastman School of Music (2008-10).  Trained in classical piano, Fiol currently studies and performs on the sitar, the mbira dzavadzimu, and a range of central Himalayan instruments.


  • PhD, University of Illinois, Urbana, IL.

Research Information

Research Support

  • (PI), Fiol, Stefan, Dialects of Dhol-Damaun: Drumming as Historiography in the Uttarakhand Himalayas, UC's University Research Council. (URC AHSS Faculty Stipend Awards AY2015-16), $6,000.00. 05/01/2016 to 04/30/2017. Status: Active.


Peer-reviewed Publications

  • Stefan Fiol (2010). Dual Framing: Locating Authenticities in the Music Videos of Himalayan Possession Rituals. Ethnomusicology, 54 (1), 28.
  • Stefan Fiol (2010). Sacred, Inferior, and Anachronous: Deconstructing Liminality among the Baddi of the Central Himalayas. Ethnomusicology Forum (19).
  • Stefan Fiol (Under Revision). From Folk to Popular and Back: Assessing Feedback between Studio Recordings and Festival Dance-Songs in Uttarakhand, North India. Asian Music.
  • Stefan Fiol (Under Review). Articulating Regionalism through Popular Music: The Case of Nauchami Narayana in the Uttarakhand Himalayas. Asian Studies.
  • Stefan Fiol (2010). Music and Society in South Asia: Perspectives from Japan (review). Asian Music, 41 (2), 198.
  • Stefan Fiol (2009). Pop Idols and Pirates: Mechanisms of Consumption and the Global Circulation of Popular Music (review). ARSC Journal, 40 (2), 253.
  • Stefan Fiol (2009). Behind the Curtain: Making Music in Mumbai’s Film Studios (review). ARSC Journal, 40 (1), 75.
  • Stefan Fiol (2013). Of Lack and Loss: Assessing Cultural and Musical Poverty in Uttarakhand. Yearbook For Traditional Music, 45, 10.
  • Stefan Fiol (2012). All India Radio and the Genealogies of Folk Music in Uttarakhand. Journal of South Asian Popular Culture, 1.
  • Stefan Fiol (2012). Articulating Regionalism through Popular Music: The Case of Nauchami Narayana in the Uttarakhand Himalayas. Journal of Asian Studies, 71 (2), 447.

Published Books

  • (In Press). Recasting Folk: Music, Media and Social Mobility in the Indian Himalayas. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press.

Book Chapters

  • (In Press). 'We Know What Our Folk Culture is From Cassettes and Videos:' Rethinking the Popular-Folk Dynamic in the Indian Himalayas. In Zoe Sherinian and Sara Morelli (Eds.), Music and Dance as Everyday Life.
  • (In Press). Folk Tropes: Sonic and Visual Representations of the Himalayas in Film Songs. In Jayson Breaster-Jones and Natalie Sarrazin (Eds.), Music of Contemporary Indian Film New York: Routledge.
  • (2015). One Hundred Years of Indian Folk Music: The Evolution of a Concept. In Victoria Levine and Philip Bohlman (Eds.), This Thing Called Music: Essays in Honor of Bruno Nettl Rowman and Littlefield Press.
  • (2013). Making Music Regional in a Delhi Studio. In Gregory Booth and Bradley Shope (Eds.), More than Bollywood: Studies in Indian Popular Music (pp.179). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Presentations & Lectures


  • Stefan Fiol (02-2009). Articulating Regionalism through Vernacular Popular Music: The Case of Nauchami Narayana in the Uttarakhand Himalayas. South Asia Colloquium Series, Cornell University.
  • Stefan Fiol (03-2008). From ‘Traditional’ to ‘Popular’ and Back: Toward a Cyclical Model of Musical Commodification. Musicology Colloquium Series, Oberlin Conservatory of Music.


  • Stefan Fiol (07-2010). Making Lok Sangeet Without the Lok Kalakaar?’ Schizophonia & Social Mobility in the Music Industry of Garhwal. American Institute of Indian Studies Symposium, India International Center, New Delhi. Other Institution.
  • Stefan Fiol (03-2009). Folk Tropes: Making Village Music Sound Traditional in Delhi Recording Studios. ‘Sound Works: Musicians and Media in South Asian Cities’ symposium, University of Chicago. Other Institution.


  • (11-2010). “Revisiting the Issue of Musical Change among Hereditary Musicians.. SEM Pre-Conference in Memory of Nazir Jairazbhoy, University of California at Los Angeles.
  • (10-2010). Mobility, Migrancy, and (Out)Marriage in the Popular Music of the Uttarakhand Himalayas. South Asian Studies Conference, Madison, WI.
  • (12-2009). Exploring Divergent Pathways for Social Mobility through the Music Industry for Bajgi, Baddi, and Jagariya Performers in the Uttarakhand Himalayas. Inaugural South Asian Music and Dance study day, ‘Caste, class and social mobility in South Asian music and dance’, Institute of Musicological Research, London, UK.
  • (11-2009). From Popular to Folk and Back: Musical Feedback between Studio Recordings and Festival Dance-Songs in Uttarakhand, North India. SEM annual meeting, Mexico City.
  • (04-2009). Teaching and Performing South Asian Music and Dance in American Universities. Workshop & Roundtable Discussion with Carol Babiracki & Denise Nuttall, Niagara Chapter of the Society for Ethnomusicology, Cornell University.
  • (03-2009). Restoring the Balance: The Integration of Human and Spirit Beings in Possession Ceremonies of the Central Himalayas. ‘Across the Threshold: Creativity, Healing, & Being’ conference, Duke University.
  • (02-2009). Sitar Lecture-Demonstration. Eastman School of Music.
  • (10-2008). Beyond Preservation? The Musical Loss and Media Representations of Itinerant Performers in the Central Himalayas. SEM annual meeting, Wesleyan University.