Derek Stauff

Derek Stauff

Associate Professor of Music
Talent is Overrated
— Title of a book by Geoff Colvin

Faculty Information

Additional Faculty Information for Derek Stauff


Ph.D., Musicology, Indiana University

M.A., Musicology, Indiana University

M.M., Organ Performance, Indiana University

B.M., Music, Grove City College


Scheide Grant, American Bach Society (2019)

Eva Judd O’Meara Award, Music Library Association (2019)

Herzog-Ernst-Stipendium – Fritz Thyssen Stiftung for postdoctoral research, Forschungsbibliothek Gotha (Summer 2015)


“The Church under Persecution: Bach’s Cantatas for the Fourth Sunday after Epiphany,” Bach Perspectives, vol. 12, edited by Robin A. Leaver (University of Illinois Press, 2018).

Samuel Michael, Psalmodia Regia (Leipzig, 1632), edited by Derek L. Stauff, Recent Researches in the Music of the Baroque (A-R Editions, 2018).

“Johann Sebastian Bach,” Oxford Bibliographies Online (Revised March 2018), Co-edited with Stephen A. Crist, DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780199757824-0043.

“Schütz’s Saul, Saul, was verfolgst du mich? and the Politics of the Thirty Years’ War,” Journal of the American Musicological Society 69, no. 2 (2016): 355-408.

“Hieronymus Weller’s Job Commentary: A New Source for Luther’s Encomion musices” in Lutherjahrbuch 81 (2014).

“Canons by Tobias Michael and Others in the Albums of Burckhard Grossmann the Younger” in Schütz-Jahrbuch 35 (2013).

“Commemorating the Battle of Breitenfeld (1631): Representing State, Civic, and Personal Ambitions.” Schütz-Jahrbuch 42 (2020).

Music and the Leipzig Convention (1631).” Journal of Seventeenth-Century Music 26 (2020).

“Monteverdi and Scacchi in Breslau: Madrigal Contrafacta in a Time of Conflict.” Journal of Seventeenth-Century Music 25 (2019).


I am a music historian and an organist. As both historian and performer, I focus on music from early-modern Germany into the age of J.S. Bach. I wrote my dissertation on Lutheran music and politics during the Thirty Years’ War, focusing particularly on composers working in Leipzig. As part of my work, I also edit music from the 17th century.

At Hillsdale, I teach the full gamut of music history from ancient times up to the present, focusing especially on European music. I teach The Understanding of Music (MUS 204 & 206) core classes, which focus on basic listening while surveying music from throughout history. In addition, I teach the three-semester music history sequence taken by majors and minors in music. These classes focus on listening but also involve score reading and writing research papers. Finally, I offer an advanced seminar where students focus on special topics. By studying a narrowly defined topic in great detail in a small class, we better learn to apply higher-level thinking skills through research, writing, and presentations. Seminar topics over the past years have included the keyboard music of J.S. Bach, Handel’s Messiah, the polyphonic mass in the Renaissance, and Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring.