Em PoffFollow

Honors Program

Fine and Performing Arts Honors

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Alison P. Deadman

Thesis Professor Department

<--College of Arts and Sciences-->

Thesis Reader(s)

Dr. Steph Frye-Clark


Female trombonists are underrepresented throughout the United States especially in collegiate teaching positions. Is the underrepresentation of female trombonists as professional musicians and teachers causing less females to pursue playing the trombone? After discussing the expected roles of females and acceptable instruments for women to play during the 1800’s, this document mentions many women who were able to surpass the norms of female musicians and make their own musical choices. The purpose of this study is to discover if there is any relevance of gender bias towards female trombonists in society today and potentially determine how these biases affect their musical opportunities. This study and the survey questions were inspired by Melissa Ewing’s dissertation, Examining the Under-Representation of Female Euphonium Players in the USA, which examined the lack of female euphonium players in the United States. In order to create a trombone-centered survey, I used questions from Ewing’s survey as a guide while adding other questions to help gain useful information from trombone professors and female-identifying trombone students in the USA. The names of college trombone professors in the United States were collected from the College Music Society directory and this determined the professors who were surveyed and asked to provide their studio gender ratio and questions about identifying as female when applicable. In addition, the professors forwarded the student survey invitation to female-identifying students in their studios to provide their individual experiences as female trombonists in college. This document will serve as a resource for future studies on female-identifying trombonists and gender studies in general regarding music education and performance.


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Open Access

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


Copyright by the authors.