Dr. Edward H. Cleino the father of music education at the University of Alabama

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University of Alabama Libraries

Ed Cleino (b.1917), percussionist, singer, and music educator, was one of the most important figures in the development and expansion of the Music Education Department at the University of Alabama. This study chronicled Cleino's life and professional contributions in four periods: his childhood and education (1917-38); his early professional life (1939-48); his tenure at the University of Alabama (1949-78); and his leadership in state and national professional organizations (1950-78). The purpose of this research was to record the career and contributions of Ed Cleino, place such events in their appropriate socio-cultural and historical contexts, recount the development and expansion of the music education programs at the University of Alabama and his pioneering work in the field of educational television, describe his contributions and leadership in the Music Educators National Conference (MENC) and the Alabama Music Educators Conference (AMEA), and discuss the significance of these contributions to the University of Alabama, the music educators of the state of Alabama and across the country, and the countless numbers of lives he influenced. Sources included photographs, course catalogs, commencement programs, and other artifacts held in the Hoole Special Collections Library at the University of Alabama and numerous other archives and libraries where Cleino lived, attended school, and served his profession. Interviews with Ed Cleino, his family members, colleagues, and former students also served as significant primary sources for this study. Additionally, the Cleino family shared numerous awards, letters, photographs, and personal artifacts that aided in documenting Cleino's accomplishments and contributions. Findings of this investigation argued that the socio-cultural contexts of the United States and universities of the post-WWII era, along with unexpected professional relationships, interacted with Cleino's lifelong appreciation for music, music skills, teaching ability, and personable nature to orchestrate his career.

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