Symposium: Practice Based and Led Popular Music Studies Research

University of Huddersfield Popular Music Studies Research Group
and International Association for the Study of Popular Music UK and Ireland Branch

Practice Based and Led Popular Music Studies Research Symposium
10am – 5pm, Wednesday 14th June, 2017

Room CAMG01, Creative Arts Building
Department of Music and Drama
University of Huddersfield
Queensgate, Huddersfield, HD1 3DH

9.30 – 10am Tea, Coffee, Pastries
10:00 Introduction and provocations – Rupert Till
10:20 Keynote – Popular music practice research in the 21st Century – Simon Zagorski-Thomas (University of West London)
11:00 Tea and Coffee
11:30 Stan Erraught Practice Based Popular Music at Bucks New University
12:00 Martin Isherwood LIPA, Popular Music Practice Research and Songwriting.
12.30 Lunch
13:30 Ben Spatz, Agnieszka Mendel, Nazlihan Eda Erca (Huddersfield) – transferable elements from practice based research in Drama
14:30 Panel – Andrew West (Leeds College of Music), Simon Zagorski-Thomas, Stan Erraught, Martin Isherwood, Ben Spatz,
– What questions are we asking of popular music through Practice-based/led research?
– What models of theory and methods of observation are relevant?
– How can this be used to foster links between the academy and the industry?
– What limitations should we expect through these methods of inquiry?
– How can we think of our practice as research?
15:30 Tea and Coffee
16:00 Discussion – Looking forward – Response to questions raised – Toby Martin (University of Huddersfield). Postgraduate students especially welcome to contribute to this discussion.
17:00 end

The Popular Music Studies Research Group at the University of Huddersfield, in collaboration with IASPM UK and Ireland Branch, is organising a symposium focused on practice based and led research in popular music studies, focusing in particular on performance and composition. Performance and composition are developing fields in popular music studies. Researchers interested in popular music performance and composition, are often based in newer institutions, and PMS has had a strong cultural studies rather than musical focus in the past. This symposium will provide an opportunity for scholars interested in practice based and led popular music studies research to meet together and discuss the field. This will involve discussion and participation, will be collaborative and interactive rather than a series of presentations. Popular music, performance and composition are defined widely and inclusively, although this symposium intends to compliment existing research activities focused on music for screen and studio production that exist elsewhere rather than replicate it. Participants interested in performance of any kind, in various forms of composition including songwriting, as well as those interested in practice based or led research in non-musical fields, are all encouraged.

Activites will include: specifically popular music focused discussions, such as exploration of research contexts for creative practices such as songwriting; exploring relevant frameworks from other research fields, such as drama, creative art and classical music; and sharing and discussion of examples from participants.

Guest Speakers:
Professor Simon Zagorski-Thomas (London College of Music, University of West London) leads the 21st Century Music Practice Research Network
Professor Andrew West (Leeds College of Music) is Head of Postgraduate Study and author of the book The Art of Songwriting
Dr. Ben Spatz (University of Huddersfield) is author of What a Body Can Do: Technique as Knowledge, Practice as Research

The event is free and lunch will be provided. If you would like to attend please email:
Dr Rupert Till, Professor of Music: R.Till @
Dr Toby Martin, Lecturer in Popular Music: T.Martin @

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