Karen MacDonald Ruymann

Headshot Karen MacDonald Ruymann

General Info


Music History

As a longtime faculty member, I love encouraging students to explore the "why" behind the music they choose to perform. 

Karen MacDonald Ruymann joined the Conservatory faculty in 2003. She is a musicologist who specializes in opera and contemporary music and lectures extensively on all aspects of music history and literature in the Greater Boston area. In addition to past research into the intersection of wit in the music of Henry Purcell, utilizing texts by British poet laureate John Dryden, Ruymann is interested in recently composed American art music, especially as integrated into performance art.  

Ruymann also holds a longtime appointment at Emerson College, where she teaches a variety of courses that explore the aesthetics and context of music in history and in current practice. She pursued her doctoral work at Boston University, from which she holds a Master of Arts in musicology. In addition, she enjoyed a long singing career in Boston and Cleveland before joining the faculty at Boston Conservatory. She earned both an Artist Diploma and Master of Arts (summa cum laude) in vocal performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music and graduated with honors from Gettysburg College with a Bachelor of Science in music education. Ruymann currently resides in Greater Boston and on Cape Cod.