May 14, 2019

Dear Members of our Campus Community,

I am very saddened to share with you the news that Professor Emeritus Dolores Menstell Hsu passed away on March 25.

Dolores studied in Austria and Germany on a Fulbright scholarship before returning to the United States to complete her graduate studies. She obtained her Ph.D. in Music History from USC, and joined our Music Department faculty in 1959. She married fellow UCSB faculty member Immanuel Hsu in 1962, and they had 43 wonderful years together before he passed away in 2005. After Dolores retired in 2009, she continued to teach and work as Professor Emeritus and Research Professor until 2012.

I vividly remember visiting Professor Hsu in her office, which was full of musical instruments from around the globe, each with its own special story. An intrepid world traveler, she brought the remarkable Henry Eichheim Collection of Musical Instruments to our campus; she published an authoritative catalog and curated an exhibition of the collection, and served for many years as its director. 

She helped launch our Music Department’s Ethnomusicology program and Doctor of Musical Arts program, served as department chair for 12 years, and served as Associate Dean in our College of Letters and Science. Professor Hsu was a tremendously dedicated campus leader, an admired colleague, and a passionate and inspirational teacher and mentor. 

Dr. Hsu was also deeply engaged with our community, working with local schools and helping to bring extraordinary musical performances to Santa Barbara. She served for many years on the board of CAMA, including four years as President.

Our hearts go out to her son, Vadim, and all of her family members, colleagues, and friends. On April 16, our campus flag was lowered to half-staff in honor and memory of Professor Hsu.


Henry T. Yang