AHRC funding win for Coventry music project


A team of researchers led by RBC's Professor of Performance-led Research in Music, Jamie Savan has been awarded a grant for £702,000 from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) to fund the three-year project, ‘Aural Histories: Coventry 1451-1642’, which will investigate the changing experience of music in Coventry through two centuries of its turbulent history.

The project will use Virtual Reality (VR) reconstructions of the city's medieval performing spaces such as St Michael’s Cathedral, which was destroyed in the Blitz of 1940, to explore the relationship between music, ritual and architecture.

The research project brings together an interdisciplinary team of researchers from Birmingham City University (BCU), the University of Birmingham, Newcastle University and London Metropolitan University, with complementary expertise in historical musicology, performance practice, audio engineering, acoustics, and architectural history.

The successful bid was written by Professor Jamie Savan together with Dr Helen Roberts, building on her PhD research at RBC. Helen will join the team as a named researcher, together with RBC Head of Music Technology Dr Simon Hall and Dr Islah Ali-McLaughlan from BCU’s Digital Media Technology lab.

External partners include Holy Trinity Church in Coventry, and the professional Early Music ensembles, the Binchois Consort and His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts.

Professor Savan says: “I am thrilled that we have been awarded this prestigious grant following a rigorous peer review process. The successful outcome is the result of a fantastic team effort involving colleagues from RBC, the wider ADM faculty and beyond. This project involves an exciting fusion of historical performance and cutting-edge technology, and there’s plenty of scope to involve our students in the research too. We can’t wait to get started and look forward to sharing our findings.”

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