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CO.LABORATIONS | Partnerships in Media and Culture


11 December 2018
18:30 - 21:00
MCW Grote Zaal, Muntstraat 2a, Utrecht

Jason King: Lecture and Workshop

We cordially invite you to a public lecture and workshop by Jason King, Associate Professor, The Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, NYU. The lecture and workshop will take place in the Grote Zaal with the entrance at Muntstraat 2A, MCW-LAB (Grote zaal KNG20) on Tuesday December 11th between 18.30 and 21.00. Tickets are free but please RSVP to: n.l.c.polson@uu.nl


Lecture – Deconstructing Freddie Mercury – Abstract: 

The lead singer and songwriter of superstar rock group Queen – famous for songs like “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Killer Queen,” “Somebody to Love” and “We Are the Champions” – the late Freddie Mercury was arguably the most gifted and flamboyant of 20th century rock stars. In this engaging lecture, Jason King discusses his ongoing research into Freddie Mercury’s stardom and musical output, deconstructing the singer’s complex African and Indian roots and the way he negotiated multiple (open) closets in his work toward a subversive mainstream musical and visual artistic practice. He’ll take a special look at the musicality and production of two of Mercury’s most compelling and well-known songs, “Bohemian Rhapsody,” and “Somebody to Love,” with a fresh lens.

Workshop – Jason King: From Theory to Practice, from Process to Products – Abstract:
In this discussion, scholar, journalist, author, musician/DJ, and producer Jason King talks about his creative process and his engagement with theory and practice, spanning his scholarship into musical aesthetics and politics and his ongoing practical / professional work in music and video.


Jason King is a musician, DJ, performer, producer, arranger and songwriter, scholar, curator and journalist.  Based in New York, he is Associate Professor and the founding faculty member of The Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music at New York University, as well as its inaugural Associate Chair and Artistic Director. He is the Institute’s longtime Director of Writing and Music Journalism, and its current Director of Global Studies. Jason is the program curator of the Clive Davis Institute’s Future Pop Music Studies program, a mandatory study abroad semester for students in Berlin, Germany, where the education focuses on future developments in pop music like AI, AR and cryptocurrency.  Currently writing for publications like NPR, Pitchfork and Red Bull Music Academy, Jason is the author of The Michael Jackson Treasures, a 2009 exclusive biography on the King of Pop, as well as a forthcoming book called Blue Magic, on the role of metaphysics in the music of artists like Timbaland. He was the host and co-producer of NPR’s web video series Noteworthy, a creative consultant on the Grammy and Emmy nominated PBS series Soundbreaking: Stories From the Cutting Edge of Recorded Music, and he was the host of the CNN original podcast Soundtracks: The B-Sides. He’s appeared in many music documentaries, including both of Spike Lee’s Michael Jackson feature films, as well as ITV’s Perspectives on the making of Michael Jackson’s Thriller with Ashley Banjo. Jason has been an expert witness in historic copyright infringement cases on behalf of artists like Jay Z, Kanye West, Timbaland, Lady Gaga, Madonna. He’s also the producer, songwriter, performer, and driving force behind Company Freak, a New York based dance music band featuring original members of groups like Chic and D-Train. He is actively at work on a revisionist biography of Freddie Mercury.


The lecture is hosted by Utrecht University’s Master of Arts and Society and our 2018 Speaker Series.


The programme will look as follows:

18.30 Doors open

18.45 Lecture

19.30 Q&A

19.45 Break

20.00 Workshop


To RSVP please contact Nick Polson at: n.l.c.polson@uu.nl