Madison-Cannon from UM-KC to lead School of Music and Dance

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to announce that we have selected Sabrina Madison-Cannon as the next dean of the School of Music and Dance. 

Sabrina will be an outstanding addition to the university and you can read full details in the Around the O story [here].

Please join me in welcoming Sabrina to the University of Oregon.


Jayanth Banavar

Provost and Senior Vice President


From the link:

Madison-Cannon spent her international performing career as a soloist with the Philadelphia Dance Company, known as Philadanco. After earning her Master of Fine Arts from the University of Iowa in 1998, Madison-Cannon has gone on to positions at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and the University of Missouri-Kansas City.
In 2016, she was promoted to professor of dance, focusing on composition and advanced choreographic design, while also serving in her associate dean role.
An associate dean since 2012, Madison-Cannon has focused on faculty issues, curricular development, assessment and credentialing. Additionally, she has had oversight of academic advising and student affairs in the conservatory.
Madison-Cannon has served on the boards and friends organizations of many of Kansas City’s arts organizations and brings with her a passion for partnerships and community engagement.
In addition to her teaching and administrative work, Madison-Cannon has been a featured presenter and performer at numerous scholarly events around the globe, including the Beijing Modern Music Festival, the Midwest Clinic–International Band and Orchestra Conference in Chicago, the International Choreographer’s Showcase in Barcelona and Madrid and several International Association of Blacks in Dance conferences.
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10 Responses to Madison-Cannon from UM-KC to lead School of Music and Dance

  1. Bach1685 says:

    OBF has been ridiculed internationally for its unsophisticated response to a supposedly “racist” remark. Because Eugene white liberals have few minority friends, if any, they have no ability to respond to racism other than in overly sensitive and unsophisticated ways. Had McCoy taken her supposed “offenses” by Halls to, say, Madison-Cannon, what do you think would have happened? OBF HAS NO Minority staff. If they had, perhaps there would have been immediate pushback to the initial “offense,” which, according to the New York Times, McCoy herself treated as racism. Diversity is important. Talking about it honestly is also important. If OBF had a competent, diverse staff, Halls would still be here.

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    • Dog says:

      I think this comment is mostly right and certainly over reaction and over simplification is totally Eugene (nuance and complexity never allowed).

      And the phrase “Eugene White Liberals” may be correct; I tend to see things slightly differently as I think most of the people in Eugene live in their own Universe. I sense that every time I have to go shopping at Market of Choice where groups of eugenians (mostly white) are all having snobbish judgement conversations about everything and those sounds waves permeate the aisles.

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    • Seasoning Queen says:

      It is obvious to me that you are seeing this situation from the outside.

      The core problem at OBF now is not racism or sexism. It’s a lack of trust. This stems back to the “leadership” of Janelle McCoy, and has now branched into the office staff, the board, the donors, and the artists.
      As long as JM is there, OBF remains a treacherous place.

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      • Bach1685 says:

        The UO will not fire McCoy. If they did they would face a lawsuit, judging from recent history. But when her contract is up, I doubt she would be rehired. All I am suggesting is that the new Dean would have the support of the community to get the Festival back on track.

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  2. Bourgeoisinger95 says:

    So much of your comment is problematic.

    Outside of Halls and Mobley, literally every other player involved with the “Halls controversy” is still involved with the festival and or university. Chief among those, McCoy herself. It’s her presence and continued employment that still endangers the festival. That’s a singular issue that even Halls himself wouldn’t present, were he reinstated.

    Also, minimizing Madison-Cannon as a “diversity hire” is 1) pretty rude, and 2) probably exactly why she might actually need to be there.

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  3. Bach1685 says:

    As music school dean eventually she will be responsible for the OBF. She certainly won’t pursue some judgement about the Halls controversy. Folks will want to support her efforts to move the Festival ahead. That will supersede resentment over dismissal of Halls. Also, the appointment of a “diversity candidate” will (indirectly) smooth out some of the fallout from the racial/sexual harassment charges hanging over the Festival and university. This is no way diminishes her academic and artistic qualifications. For various reasons, including the passage of time, the page is turned and folks move on.

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    • Dog says:

      everybody pursues judgement these days and
      I think in the past, that folks really moved on,
      I don’t think they move much these days.

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  4. Bach1685 says:

    A smart hire and the beginning of the end to the Halls controversy.

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    • Amy Adams says:

      No quibble over the first part of your sentence…but in what way does her hiring signal the “beginning of the end to the Halls controversy”?
      There was zero mention of the Oregon Bach Festival in this press release, though Banavar did say that outgoing dean Brad Foley will lead and direct the ChamberMusic@Beall series.

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  5. mindless husk says:

    Will be interesting to see if she gets sucked into the Bach Festival swamp now that it is under outgoing dean Brad Foley. Her background with arts orgs in Kansas City might be challenged, or helpful, or both.

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