MAK Su Yin
Professor, Music Theory
Research and Pedagogy Stream Coordinator
210, Hui Yeung Shing Building
BA (Toronto); RSA CertTEFL; MA (Queens, CUNY); PhD (Eastman, Rochester)
Schubert; Schumann; Schenkerian Analysis; Musical Semiotics; History of Music Theory; Literature and Music, Performance Studies

MAK Su Yin holds a B.A. in English literature and Music from the University of Toronto, an M.A. in Musicology from Queens College, City University of New York, and a double Ph.D. in Musicology and Music Theory from the Eastman School of Music, University of Rochester. Her teaching and scholarship have ranged across a diverse set of interests, including Schenkerian analysis, Formenlehre, text-music relations, musical hermeneutics, and the interactions between analysis and performance. Primarily known as a Schubert scholar, her articles on the composer have appeared in the Journal of Musicology, Eighteenth-Century Music, and monographs by various academic presses. In 2008, MAK received the Emerging Scholar Award from the Society for Music Theory for her article 'Schubert's Sonata Form and the Poetics of the Lyric.' Her book, Schubert's Lyricism Reconsidered: Structure, Design and Rhetoric, was published by Lambert Academic Press in Germany in 2010.

Outside academia, MAK is an active promoter of classical music to the public and was an Artist Associate of the Hong Kong Sinfonietta in the 2014/2015 concert season. She enjoys a secondary career as a writer, and has published poetry and literary translations in both English and Chinese. She also frequently collaborates with composers on opera libretti and texts for vocal setting.

Selected Publications


  1. (with David Beach) Explorations in Schenkerian Analysis, ed. David Beach and Su Yin Mak. Rochester: University of Rochester Press, 2016.
  2. Schubert's Lyricism Reconsidered: Structure, Design and Rhetoric. Saarbrücken: Lambert Academic Publishing, 2010.

Journal Articles

  1. 'String Theory: An Ethnographic Study of a Professional Quartet in Hong Kong'. Intégral, Vol. 30 (2016), 53–65. 
  2. 'Felix Salzer's "Die Sonatenform bei Franz Schubert" (1928): An English Translation and Edition with Critical Commentary.' Theory and Practice, Vol. 40 (2015), 1–121.
  3.   'Wenn in Time: Linguistic Moments in Robert Schumann's Dichterliebe', KronoScope: Journal for the Study of Time Vol. 14 (2014), 51-70.
  4. <音樂理論文獻翻譯的"跨文化"想像>.  《星海音樂學院學報》第126期 (2012), 41-47. ['Cross-cultural imagination in the Translation of Music Theoretical Writings', Journal of the Xinghai Conservatory of Music Vol. 126 (2012), 41-47].
  5. 'Pitching the Sale: A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Operatic Topoi in Television Commercials.'  Musica Humana, Vol. 3 No. 1 (2011), 61-82.
  6. 'Schubert as Schiller's Sentimental Poet,' Eighteenth-Century Music Vol. 4 no. 2 (2007), 251-263.
  7. 'Schubert's Sonata Forms and the Poetics of the Lyric.'  Journal of Musicology Vol. 23 (2006), 263-306.

Book Chapters

  1. 'Structural and Form-functional Ambiguities in the First Movement of Schubert's Octet in F Major, D. 803', in Explorations in Schenkerian Analysis, ed. David Beach and Su Yin Mak, 123–41.
  2. 'Formal Ambiguity and Generic Reinterpretation in the Late Instrumental Music', in Schubert's Late Music: History, Theory, Style, ed. Lorraine Byrne Bodley and Julian Horton (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016), 282–306.
  3.   'Et in Arcadia ego: The Elegiac Structure of Schubert's Quartettsatz in C minor, D.703.'  in The Unknown Schubert: New Perspectives, New Insights, ed. Barbara Reul and Lorraine Byrne Bodley (London: Ashgate,  2008), 145-53. 
  4. 'Schubert's Allusions to the Descending Tetrachord', in Le style instrumental de Schubert: sources, analyse, contexte, évolution, ed. Xavier Hascher (Paris: Publications de la Sorbonne, 2007), 163-79.

Review Articles

  1. '"Werke für Klavier zu vier Händen" by Franz Schubert, Kassel: Bärenreiter, 2013', Performance Practice Review: Vol. 20: No. 1 (2015), Article 4. DOI: 10.5642/perfpr.201520.01.04, available at:
  2. Review of Janet Schmalfeldt, In the Process of Becoming: Analytical and Philosophical Perspectives on Form in Early Nineteenth-Century Music. Journal of Music Theory Vol. 57 no.1 (2013), 151-158.

List of Recent Courses Taught
  • MUSC3432 Tonal Music Analysis
  • MUSC3462 Theory and Analysis: Special Topic
  • MUSC3492 Analysis and Performance
  • MUSC3472 Theory & Analysis: Special Topic III
  • MUSC6401 Advanced Tonal Music Analysis
  • MUSC5311 Special Topic V in "Style & Interpretation": Analysis and Performance (MA)