Adeline Mueller


  • Interim Chair of Music
  • Associate Professor of Music
Adeline Mueller

Adeline Mueller is a music historian specializing in Mozart and eighteenth-century vocal and theatrical music, particularly in German-speaking Europe. Her research interests include music and childhood, marginalized composers, early musical ethnography, and silent film music. She has published articles in the journals Opera Quarterly, Eighteenth-Century Music, and Frontiers in Communication. Mueller also contributed chapters to the edited volumes Mozart in Context (Cambridge, 2019), The Works of Monsieur Noverre Translated from the French: Noverre, His Circle, and the English Lettres sur la danse (Pendragon, 2015), and Wagner and Cinema (Indiana, 2010).

Mueller's book, Mozart and the Mediation of Childhood, examines Mozart’s role in the social and cultural construction of childhood during the Austrian Enlightenment, using evidence from his early career, his compositions for the young, early biographies, and posthumous (including spurious) music prints. She is also contributing chapters to the forthcoming Cambridge Companion to The Magic Flute and Cambridge History of German Opera to 1820. Her current book project, Touching Melodies: Music, Print, and Blind Education in German-Speaking Europe, 1780-1840, argues for the centrality of music and music education in the numerous institutes for the blind founded in the decades before Braille, especially Vienna and Berlin. These institutes, their music curricula and performances, and the tools and media through which their music was circulated, constituted a turning point in the cultural history of disability and special education in Europe.

Mueller has presented papers at such conferences as the American Musicological Society, the Mozart Society of America, and the American and British Societies for Eighteenth-Century Studies. Previous academic appointments include Brown University (Visiting Assistant Professor, 2014-15) and New College, University of Oxford (Weston Junior Research Fellow in Music, 2011-14).

In her research and in courses such as History of Western Music, Shakespeare and Music, Music and ChildhoodWomen and Music: Sounding Community, and Race in the American Musical, Mueller and her students consider how music circulates among performers, consumers, and audiences, especially through print, and on musical practices as sites of social reflection and experimentation.


  • Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley
  • M.A., University of Sussex

Happening at Mount Holyoke

Recent Campus News

Members of the Mount Holyoke faculty are playing a key role in the Pioneer Valley Symphony’s new look at women composers.

Recent Publications

Mueller, A. (2023). Blackness and whiteness in The Magic Flute: Reflections from Shakespeare studies. In Jessica Waldoff, ed., The Cambridge Companion to The Magic Flute (pp. 252-272). Cambridge University Press.

Mueller, A. (2021). Roses Strewn Upon the Path: Rehearsing Familial Devotion in Late Eighteenth-Century German Songs for Parents and Children. Frontiers in Communication (Research Topic: "Songs and Signs: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Cultural Transmission and Inheritance in Human and Nonhuman Animals"). Retrieved from:

Mueller, A. (2021). Mozart and the Mediation of Childhood. University of Chicago Press.

Recent Awards

Recent Honors

Mueller, Adeline presented her paper “Touching Melodies: Tactile Music Notation at the Vienna Institute for the Blind” at the Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society in 2023. She shared tactile replicas of one of the Institute's experimental notation systems, prepared by Luke Jaeger (Technical Project Administrator, Fimbel Maker and Innovation Lab).

Mueller, A. Presented “The Impossible Oratorio: Rejection, Refusal, and Blind Agency on the Eighteenth-century Stage” at the Annual Meeting of the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies (St. Louis MO, March 2023).

Adeline Mueller (Music) gave an invited lecture in the Musicology Colloquia series at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, entitled “Touching Melodies: Tactile Music Notation at the Vienna Institute for the Blind, ca. 1819” (November 8). Luke Jaeger (Technical Project Administrator, Fimbel Maker and Innovation Lab) prepared three-dimensional replicas of an experimental music notation system illustrated in one of Mueller's nineteenth-century sources; these were shared with the audience at the lecture.

Gave two public lectures in November and December as part of the Pioneer Valley Symphony’s Fall 2020 Discovery Series, “Hidden Figures: Women Composers Through the Ages.” Mueller was in conversation with the Symphony's Music Director Tianhui Ng (Music), who hosted the series.

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