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Music and performing arts

REF 2014 Highlights

A significant grade point average increase from 2.4 in 2008 to 2.85 in 2014 (=3rd among UK conservatoires)
100% of research impact deemed 'very considerable' or 'outstanding' in its reach and significance
90% of our research environment is deemed internationally excellent or world leading

Work in the Music and Performing Arts unit is carried out by the Birmingham Conservatoire where research is focused in four areas: musicology, music technology, composition and performance.

See our full UoA 35 submission on the REF website

Our musicological research is concentrated into four informal groups:

  • twentieth-century French music, especially Messiaen and Ravel
  • seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century French and Italian music, with particular focus on the music of Charpentier and Lully, and on the baroque Italian cantata
  • late medieval and early Renaissance music theory and notation, especially Johannes Tinctoris, supported by a £400,000 research project grant from the AHRC
  • music for large screen and television, especially Buffy studies.

Our research in music technology is centred on Integra Lab, an interdisciplinary research lab with a focus on musician-computer interaction. It is a direct spin-off from the international Integra Project, a €3 million two-phase project funded by the EU from 2005 to 2011. Integra included multiple partner organisations from Europe and North America and set new standards in the integration of music technology with creative practice and performance.

Research at the Conservatoire aims to extend the agenda of musical creativity, in challenging assumptions surrounding the nature, content and presentation of new music, especially in terms of venue, subject-matter and audiences. Our work embraces both technology and innovative score-based and improvisational practices.

Research Stories

Find out more about the great research at Birmingham Conservatoire.
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Research People

Meet our researchers and read more about their work and areas of expertise.
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Research Centre

The Centre for Music and Performance (CMP) is the focal point for research.
Go to CMP >>