Faculty & Staff

Mary Oleskiewicz, PhD

Associate Professor of Music, College of Liberal Arts


Areas of Expertise

Flute (Modern Flute, Baroque Flute, Native and South American flutes), Musicology, Performance Practice, Chamber Music Coaching, Latin American Music and Dance, Organology


PhD, Duke University (Performance Practice)
MA, Case Western Reserve University (Music Before 1750), with Honors
BMus, Dana School of Music, Youngstown State University (Flute Performance), Summa Cum Laude

Additional Information

Hailed as "one of the greatest baroque flutists of our time" by American Record Guide (2014), Professor Oleskiewicz  has served on the UMass Boston faculty since 2001. She has also served as Guest Professor at the University of the Arts (Berlin, Germany); Duke University; Queens College (CUNY); and as professor of flute at The University of South Dakota. Between 1998 and 2001, she held the post Curator of Musical Instruments at the National Music Museum.

After winning first prizes in both the National Flute Association’s Baroque Flute Artist and Doctoral Dissertation Competitions, Mary Oleskiewicz quickly established herself as an international performer of historical flutes and the leading expert on the flutist, theorist and composer Johann Joachim Quantz. She is an authority on music at the 18th-century court of the Prussian King Frederick “the Great,” and her numerous, highly acclaimed essays, editions and recordings have focused on the music of Quantz, C.P.E. Bach, King Frederick and the Bach family. Her musicological and performing expertise also extends to music of Latin America and the Caribbean, in particular the musics of Argentina, the Alti Plano, and Brazil.

A resident of Boston (USA), she has performed, lectured and given master classes throughout Europe and North America, Japan, Australia and Mexico. Currently principal flutist of Newton Baroque, she has also performed under Roger Norrington with Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society Orchestra, and has appeared as soloist with numerous period instrument ensembles, including La Fontegara of Mexico City; Newport Baroque; Arcadia Players; Boston Pro Musica; Chicago’s Baroque Band; and the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra. Prof. Oleskiewicz has released five solo recordings with the Hungaroton Classic and Naxos labels. Her recent world premiere CD of flute concertos, performed with Miklos Spanyi and Concerto Armonico, is receiving international acclaim. During 2016 she will be touring China on both modern and baroque flutes.

Mary Oleskiewicz’s recording projects are closely connected to her research and editing work. In 2012 she published the first editions of repertoire from her CD released in 2011: Flute Sonatas by Frederick “the Great” (for Breitkopf & Härtel). As a contributing editor for Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach:  The Collected Works, she published a new critical edition of the sonatas for flute, harp, oboe and viola da gamba, taking into account newly available musical sources. She is regularly featured as a contributor to Flutist Quarterly and the Dutch Flute Society’s Fluit, and is currently at work editing a volume of Bach Perspectives, entitled J.S. Bach and His Sons for the American Bach Society.

Professor Oleskiewicz is the recipient of several prestigious multi-year fellowships from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation (Germany) and the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) allowing her to reside for extensive periods in Germany, Russia and elsewhere to research, edit and record flute music of the 18th-century. She is also a three-time recipient of the University of Massachusetts’ Joseph P. Healey Award, and she was honored as a guest speaker and performer for her research contributions at the Provost’s Research Luncheon in 2013.

A fluent German speaker, during 2008-2009 Professor Oleskiewicz taught performance practice in at the University of the Arts in Berlin. She has also presented a series of guest lectures at Queen’s College in NYC, for the Year of Brazil.

Among Mary Oleskiewicz’s principal flute teachers were Walter Mayhall (modern flute) and Sandra Miller (baroque flutes). Her instrumentarium of flutes ranges from the middle ages to the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. She also plays baroque recorder, Argentine bandoneon and improvises on Native and South American flutes.

Argentine Tango

Since 2005 Mary Oleskiewicz has been dancing, teaching, researching and performing Argentine tango, which she has studied privately with many of the most renowned tango masters in Buenos Aires, Berlin and the U.S. During 2014 she travelled internationally to offer seminars and lectures on the music of the virtuoso bandoneon player and orchestra leader Anibal Troilo as part of the centenary celebrations of his birth. As a dancer, she has performed and lead tango workshops at the Albuquerque and Boston Tango Festivals, the Boston Brazilian Festival, Montango (Montreal), and Phoenix Studio (Berlin, Germany) and elsewhere. As a musician, she has toured on flute and bandoneon as a member of the Qtango Orchestra of Albuquerque, NM. 


Modern and Baroque Flute; Music of Latin America and the Caribbean;  Western Music History and Literature; J.S. Bach; Beethoven, Romance and Revolution; Performance Practice; Argentine Tango