Researcher & Author
Rohan earned a Ph.D. in musicology from the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester as a Provost Fellow. His dissertation, Virtual Gurukulavasa: Tradition and Innovation in Online Carnatic Percussion Pedagogy, examines the musical, social, and cultural impact of virtual music lessons in the context of South Indian percussion. Fundamentally interdisciplinary, his research explores the exciting intersections of music, globalization, diaspora, and technology. His dissertation is available through ProQuest.
Rohan earned a master’s in musicology and ethnomusicology from Eastman. Prior to that, Rohan completed a double major in music and chemistry, magna cum laude, from Kalamazoo College as a Heyl Foundation Science Scholar. His thesis was entitled Acoustics of the Mridangam: Study of a New Design of a South Indian Drum.
Rohan's dual passion and education in the arts and sciences has enabled him to carry out cutting-edge interdisciplinary research. He recently patented a new drumhead tuning system to make tuning and head replacement more user-friendly. The patent was supported by Eastman’s Institute for Music Leadership.
Rohan conducted acoustics research on his new design at Coe College with respected acoustician, Dr. James Cottingham. The research was funded by a grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. He presented his research at the Acoustical Society of America’s international conference in New Orleans and was awarded the “Best Student Paper Award.” He was subsequently invited to present at the ASA meetings in Kansas City in an interdisciplinary panel on rhythm, where he was awarded the “Best Student Paper Award” for a second time. He was recently invited to present his dissertation at the ASA meetings in San Francisco in 2013 and Providence in 2014.
- Virtual Gurukulavasa: Tradition and Innovation in Online Carnatic Percussion Pedagogy. Ph.D. dissertation. 2013.
- “Logging on to the Virtual Gurukulam,” The Hindu, December 19, 2012.
- “Tabla: An Introduction” for the Red Bull Music Academy, February 2, 2014.
- Contribution to Psychology of Music: From Sound to Significance, 2010.
- "A New and Practical
Design for the Mridangam," Percussive Notes, August 2006.