Dr Marc Rontsch
Senior Lecturer
Odeion School of Music
Odeion School of Music
IB 36
Communication Science

Short CV

Marc Röntsch is a musicologist, guitarist and bassist originally from Cape Town. Marc completed his doctorate at Stellenbosch University under the supervision of Professor Stephanus Muller, writing a thesis on the Zimbabwean-born composer Christopher Langford James (1952 – 2008). After completing his PhD, Marc held an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the Africa Open Institute for Music, Research and Innovation from 2018-2019. Thereafter, he was twice awarded the prestigious Vice-Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at Nelson Mandela University, working with an interdisciplinary approach with the Centre for the Advancement of Non-Racialism and Democracy, as well as the Music Department and School of Visual and Performing Arts.He has published in local and international journals and books, on subjects ranging from life-writing, popular music and race, archives and digital humanities, and embodiment and Covid-19. Marc has also spoken at local and international conferences, and sits on the Executive Committee of the South African Society for Research in Music. Marc is passionate about decolonial research within South African popular music, His research looks into intersections of identity politics and music particularly within post-apartheid South African music, as well as the interconnectedness of life-writing and archival studies. Marc is married to saxophonist/composer/arranger Claire Röntsch, and is a fan of Doctor Who, reading, and tea and coffee.


Röntsch, M.A., 2023. `Making and Remaking Coloured Identities in the Music of Stereo Zen`. Muziki, DOI: 10.1080/18125980.2023.2167734 

Röntsch, M., 2022. `Talent offends, genius terrifies`: Myth and persona in the biographical research on Christopher Langford James. Persona Studies, 8(1), pp.131-142.

Röntsch, M., 2022. Sight/site-specific recording: Embodiment and absence. In Jenni Lauwrens (ed.) Embodiment and the Arts: Views from South Africa. PULP, pp.53-71

Röntsch, M, 2021. ‘The echo chambers of cyberspace’: the meaning and consequences of reconsidering the digital Michael Mosoeu Moerane Critical Edition as an archive. Journal of the Musical Arts in Africa18(1), pp.1-15.

Röntsch, M., 2020. ‘No Use Calling Yourself South African. South African Is Nothing’: Understanding and Exploring the Concept of Place and Nationhood in the Life and Music of Christopher James. In Marleen Rensen·  and Christopher Wiley (eds.) Transnational Perspectives on Artists` Lives, Palgrave Macmillan Cham, London, pp.77-89.

Röntsch, M., 2020. Disruption: Gender, Jazz and the Lady Day Big Band. SAMUS: South African Music Studies, 40(1), pp.463-482.

Röntsch, M.A., 2019. `I might seem out of place here`: Exploring Whiteness and Belonging in Hog Hoggidy Hog`s Oink!. SAMUS: South African Music Studies, 39(1), pp.23-43.

Area(s) of Interest

  • Popular Music
  • Life-Writing
  • Archival Theory
  • Identity Politics
  • Decoloniality

Courses Presented

MUSM2612 - History of Jazz 

MUSM3712 - Cultural Musicology

MUMA4808 - Musicology Specialisation

MUSM4812/MUSM6812 - Research Methodology

MUS4808/MUSM6808 - Research Report


T: +27 51 401 2240 or humanities@ufs.ac.za

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Neliswa Emeni-Tientcheu: +27 51 401 2536
Phyllis Masilo: +27 51 401 9683

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