About the network
News and events
Alistair Anderson has been at the forefront of traditional music for 30 years. Internationally acknowledged as the master of the English Concertina, he has taken the music of Northumberland to new audiences around the world, touring extensively throughout Europe and has no less than 35 tours of America to his credit. As well as championing the traditional music and musicians of the area, Anderson has a growing reputation as a composer of new music rooted in the local traditions. His first major composition Steel Skies was described by the Guardian as "the finest recent original contribution to the tradition of English music", while On Cheviot Hills, a suite for strings and concertina commissioned by leading classical string quartet The Lindsays, was described as "one of the years musical highlights" by the magazine Rock and Reel. His most recent work, a joint composition with jazz trombonist Annie Whitehead, was chosen by the Arts Council Contemporary Touring Network to tour the country early in 2003.
In addition to his work as a musician and composer, Anderson is committed to encouraging young people to become actively involved in music. He is artistic director of Folkworks, which is now nationally recognised as the leading development agency in traditional music. Folkworks, one of the founding partners in the new Music Centre Gateshead, runs summer schools, in-service training for teachers, a huge range of schools projects as well as organising tours of the very finest performers from round the world.
Paul Attinello is a lecturer in the International Centre for Music Studies where he has taught courses on musicals, the popular voice, and performance theory. He has also taught at the University of Hong Kong and the University of California, Los Angeles. He has published in the Journal of Musicological Research, Musik-Konzepte, Musica/Realtá, MLA Notes, the Revised New Grove and several collections. He created the Newsletter of the Gay & Lesbian Study Group of the American Musicological Society, and edited its first three volumes; he is also an associate editor of Twentieth Century Music (Cambridge) and a member of the editorial collective of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology. Dr Attinello also contributed to the groundbreaking Queering the Pitch: The New Lesbian & Gay Musicology (New York and London: Routledge, 1994) and its recent companion volume Queering the Popular Pitch (New York and London: Routledge, 2006).
Current projects include co-editing a
book on Buffy the Vampire Slayer with Vanessa
Knights, a monograph on music about AIDS, along with other
projects outside the field of popular music.
Dr Biddle is currently working on a new single-authored book for Oxford University Press entitled Listening to Men: Musical Thought, Masculinity and the Austro German Tradition in the Long Nineteenth Century and an edited book with Vanessa Knights (School of Modern Languages) on World Popular Musics and National Identity forthcoming in 2007. Also with Vanessa Knights he co-organised the first International Conference of Popular Musics of the Hispanic and Lusophone Worlds and the ¡VAMOS! Latin and Lusophone festival (July 2006) in conjunction with Nik Barrera and Andrew Dixon (NAME) and Jill Bennison (Blue Sky Events). He is a member of the editorial collective of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
Philip Bohlman (Visiting Professor)
Philip Bohlman is one of the world’s leading ethnomusicologists. He is Professor of Music and Jewish Studies at the University of Chicago and he has taught previously at the Universities of California, Illinois, Freiburg, Bologna and Vienna, among others. He has worked particularly on theories and histories of folk music, especially European folk music; Jewish musics; music in the Middle East; and historical aspects of ethnomusicology.
Among his many books are The Study of Folk Music in the Modern World (1988), “The Land Where Two Streams Flow”: Music in the German-Jewish Community of Israel (1989), The World Centre for Jewish Music in Palestine, 1936-1940: Jewish Musical Life on the Eve of World War II (1992) and Central European Folk Music: A Reference Guide to German-Language Sources (1996), World Music: A Very Short Introduction (2002), Jewish Music and Modernity: The Crisis of the ‘Other’ within European Culture (2003), Herder on Music and Nationalism (2004), The Music of European Nationalism (2004), "Jüdische Musik" - eine mitteleuropäische Geistesgeschichte (Böhlau, 2005) and Jewish Music and Modernity ( 2006). The New Budapest Orpheum Society has released the double-CD, Dancing on the Edge of the Volcano (Cedille Records, 2002). Current projects include books on music drama in the Holocaust and a translation of Johann Gottfried Herder's writings on music and nationalism. He was a co-editor of Ethnomusicology and Modern Music History (1991), Comparative Musicology and Anthropology of Music: Essays on the History of Ethnomusicology (1991), Disciplining Music: Musicology and Its Canons (1992) and Music and the Racial Imagination (2000).
He was awarded the Dent Medal of the Royal Musical Association in 1997and the Berlin Prize from the American Academy in Berlin in 2003. In 2006-2007 he will hold the Royal Holloway-British Library Lectures in Musicology.
Professor Bohlman is a member of the editorial board of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
David Clarke, Professor in Music, joined the International Centre for Music Studies in 1991, having previously lectured at Dartington College of Arts and the University of Liverpool. His interests include the composer Michael Tippett, on whom he has published various books and articles, as well as musical aesthetics, theory and analysis. As conductor, violinist, and latterly a student of North Indian classical music, he also remains active as a musical practitioner.
David Clarke is a music theorist in the broadest sense, interested in analytical, philosophical, psychological, linguistic and semiotic applications to questions of musical meaning -– concerns variously reflected in his published articles and reviews. Current projects include an inquiry into music and consciousness (with a conference in 2006 in collaboration with Prof. Eric Clarke of Sheffield University Music Department), and research for a book provisionally entitled Music after Postmodernism. Feeding into this latter project are critical inquiries into cultural relativism (e.g. ‘Elvis and Darmstadt’) which were piloted in presentations at the University of Nottingham and the University of Edinburgh during the Spring term of 2002. Dr Clarke is on the editorial board of Twentieth-Century Music and is a member of the editorial collective of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
Professor Máire Cross was appointed to a Chair in French in the School of Modern Languages at Newcastle University in September 2005. Formerly she was Head of the Department of French and Chair of the School of Modern Languages and Linguistics at the University of Sheffield. She is President of the Association for the Study of Modern and Contemporary France.
She is currently working on Flora Tristan’s correspondence. Her publications on that topic include: The Letter in Flora Tristan’s Politics, (Palgrave-Macmillan, 2004), and an edited book (with Caroline Bland) entitled Gender and Politics in the Age of Letter-Writing, 1750-2000, (Ashgate, 2004). In collaboration with archival sources in France and the Humanities Research Institute at the University of Sheffield she has created an electronic edition of Tristan's correspondence on CD-ROM. It was through the letters to worker militants that she came across the reference to political singing. She recently presented in Sheffield and in papers in Melbourne on Flora Tristan’s use of song in her socialist campaign of the early 1840s.
Founder member of the Northern (French) Media Research Group (1995) which organises six-monthly conferences on French media, and co-founder and editor of the Web Journal of French Media Studies. He is also a member of the Advisory Board to the Newcastle University Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence. His research interests are increasingly focused on popular cultural practices in sport and leisure, the audiovisual media, new information technologies, and music.
He has published on sport, society and popular culture, French politics and the media, French reality television and crime shows, the Internet and Minitel, French talk radio, and was a contributor to the Routledge Encyclopedia of Contemporary French Culture. He has recently co-edited books on the impact of the World Cup on France and 100 years of the Tour de France with Geoff Hare, edited a volume on French popular culture for Arnold and is currently writing a book on the history of the French space programme. Hugh was co-organiser of the conference on popular musics and national identities and has published a related volume on French popular music, Popular Music in France from Chanson to Techno: Culture Identity and Society, with Steve Cannon (Centre for Research in Media and Cultural Studies, University of Sunderland).
Matt Davies is Lecturer in International Politics at Newcastle University. Previously he was Assistant Professor at Pennsylvania State University in Erie, USA, and a Visiting Professor in the Political Science Department at York University in Toronto, Canada. His research focuses on questions concerning culture, everyday life, and labour in international political economy and he is the author of International Political Economy and Mass Communication in Chile: National Intellectuals and Transnational Hegemony (Palgrave Macmillan, 1998) and recently co-editor with Magnus Ryner of the University of Birmingham of Poverty and the Production of World Politics: Unprotected Workers in the Global Political Economy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2006). He is currently writing papers on the representation of work in Buffy the Vampire Slayer and has also published on Punk Rock and the Disalienation of International Relations.
Graduated from the University of Warwick in 1997 with a BA in Comparative American Studies. Completed his MA with the Open University, having turned his attention to the study of popular music and currently completing his PhD investigating aspects of loss in popular music under the supervision of Prof. Richard Middleton and Dr. Ian Biddle in the International Centre for Music Studies. He teaches in the International Centre for Music Studies on modules covering popular music, music and cultural theory, and world music.
His research interests are in the roles played by loss, memory, nostalgia and revolution in popular music. In addition to Anglophone popular musics he works on Portuguese fado and Latin American nueva canción, reflecting interests developed during extensive periods based in Portugal and Chile. He has attended a number of conferences during 2006 to present work linking his interests in Chilean nueva canción and Cuban nueva trova with the philosophical work of Jacques Derrida and Alain Badiou. Click here for details of conference papers presented. In addition to working on the completion of his PhD thesis, he is preparing articles based on his fado and nueva canción research. He is also working on aspects of Music and/as Event with an eye towards future publication. He is associate editor of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
Dr Agustín Fernández obtained his PhD at City University, specialising in Composition. Before that, he completed an MMus at The University of Liverpool and a Licentiate’s degree at the Bolivian Catholic University. In between, he spent three years in Japan, studying composition with Takashi Iida and with Akira Ifukube, and also training as a violinist with Takeshi Kobayashi. His research interest is composition, but he also has interests in Afrocuban music.
His catalogue includes opera, orchestral, chamber and electroacoustic music. Most of his works have received high-profile performances in Europe and the Americas. Dr Fernández’s compositional research focuses on the integration of a cultural multiplicity into a language which invokes the European classical canon while challenging it. Earlier stages of his career - folk musician, orchestral player, harmony teacher, even language instructor – provide the background for a diversity in search of integration. His current technical explorations pursue harmonic processes that extend tonality in ways which are aurally traceable, rhythmic and textural schemes that promote continuity, and the use of standard instrumentations to reflect the influence of electroacoustic and folkloric sonorities.
He revised Peregrine for a performance at the Lincoln Center on 22 November 2005 as part of the centennial celebrations of Juilliard. He recently premiered Mystical Dances at the Huddersfield Festival ( 19 November 2006) and will premiere the first complete performance of A to Z, at Nybrokajen 11, Stockholm, on 5 December. His compositions also featured in the second concert of the I3 series, which took place in The Sage Gateshead recently. I3 is the creative strand of the ICMUS CETL (Centre for Excellence in Teaching and Learning - Music and Inclusivity) activities, at the heart of which is a series of concerts held in partnership with Durham University and The Sage Gateshead.
Dr. Fernández-Toro was educated in Paris (Sorbonne Nouvelle) and Madrid (Universidad Complutense) as a linguist. She also trained as a singer in Madrid (Escuela Superior de Canto) and has been performing Latin American music for 30 years.
She joined the University in 1991 as a Lecturer in Modern Languages. Her PhD thesis (Newcastle, 2001) focused on the listening strategies used by adult learners for comprehending audio-recorded speech in a foreign language. She has published three books on second language learning and is regularly invited as guest lecturer, both within and outside the UK (e.g. Freie Universität Berlin, Oct. 2004). More recently she has extended her interest from applied linguistics to music-related aspects of sociolinguistics, notably language attitudes and bilingualism in song. Her current project in this area is a study of the use and perception of Spanish and Guarani in Paraguayan song. Within the School of Modern Languages she teaches modules in Spanish language and linguistics, including World Spanish.
As a singer and guitarist, Dr. Fernández-Toro has published a record of Bolivian folk songs (Pachamama, La Paz: Lira, 1979) and performed Latin American music in France (Festival du Marais, Paris 1976), Bolivia (1979) and Paraguay (2002, with Paraguayan harpist Rito Pedersen). She has also composed over 20 songs based on musical forms from Argentina, Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, Uruguay, Chile and Cuba. With the vocal group Voice Quad she delighted those present at the mayoral reception held for delegates at the first International Conference of Popular Musics of the Hispanic and Lusophone Worlds, co-organised by Ian Biddle and Vanessa Knights (July 2006).
Completed his undergraduate degree in music at Nottingham University in 1982 and also has an MA in ethnomusicology from Durham University, an MMus in electroacoustic composition from UEA and is completing his PhD at Newcastle. He has worked as a composer in both electroacoustic and "conventional" media and has received several prestigious commissions and awards for his work, including commissions from the Royal Opera House's "Garden Venture", Sarajevo Winter Festival, Sonic Arts Network and Welsh Jazz Society, organisations whose diversity attests to his pluralistic creative outlook.
He is currently lecturer at the International Centre for Music Studies. He has published “Who’s Listening”, an essay on power relations in recorded music in the collection Sounds of Resistance, Suppression, and Subversion: Essays on Music, Politics, and Power edited by Annie Janeiro Randall (Routledge, 2005). He is also currently developing a long-term creative project with the Swedish composer Sten-Olof Hellstrom based in the Royal Technical High-School, Stockholm. He is a member of the editorial collective of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
is a lecturer in philosophy in Philosophical Studies, the
Centre for Knowledge,
Science and Society. He has interests in the relationship between
philosophy and vernacular musics. More generally, he is interested in
understanding the happening of music as an event, drawing on accounts of
temporality in phenomenology and poststructuralism to illuminate
particular musical practices. This is part of his more general interest
in the relationship between philosophy and art.
Lars Iyer is a lecturer in philosophy in Philosophical Studies, the Centre for Knowledge, Science and Society. He has interests in the relationship between philosophy and vernacular musics. More generally, he is interested in understanding the happening of music as an event, drawing on accounts of temporality in phenomenology and poststructuralism to illuminate particular musical practices. This is part of his more general interest in the relationship between philosophy and art.
Senior Lecturer in Hispanic Studies in the
School of Modern Languages, Dr
Knights is currently
researching constructions of identity (individual, collective, national
and transnational) in the popular song genre of the bolero within the
Hispanic Caribbean (Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic). She
spent April 2000 researching at the Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo
de la Música Cubana and the Museo de la Música in Havana, April 2002
researching at the Centro Nacional de Investigación, Documentación e
Información Musical Carlos Chávez in Mexico City and was a visiting
researcher at the Institute for Caribbean Studies and
Musicalia in San Juan from January to March
2003. In July 2000 she was invited to participate in the Fourteenth
International Colloquium held at the International Bolero Festival in
Havana and in November 2002 was one of the speakers at the first
conference on Latin music to be held at the
Washington D.C. She is an active member of the
Latin American branch of the International Association for the Study of
Research Seminar in the North and
has guest lectured on the bolero at the Centre for Gender Studies of the
University of Santiago de Chile (March 2001) and to MA Mexican Studies
students at the University of Puerto Rico. Within the
School of Modern
Languages she teaches modules on contemporary
Spanish and Latin American culture at undergraduate and masters level.
Dr Knights has published several
articles on the bolero and is currently co-editing a volume on locating
debates on national identity with Ian Biddle and a volume on music in
Buffy the Vampire Slayer with Paul Attinello.
She also recently published a piece in the groundbreaking
Queering the Popular Pitch (New York and London: Routledge, 2006).
She is on the
advisory board of
Music, Sound and the Moving Image, the editorial board of
Music History, the editorial collective of
and is music editor for the online
Buffy Studies. With Ian Biddle she co-organised the first
International Conference of Popular Musics of the Hispanic and Lusophone
Worlds and the ¡VAMOS!
Latin and Lusophone festival (July 2006) in conjunction with Nik
Barrera and Andrew Dixon (NAME)
and Jill Bennison (Blue Sky Events). Click here to view
her university blog.
A Senior Lecturer in Hispanic Studies in the School of Modern Languages, Dr Knights is currently researching constructions of identity (individual, collective, national and transnational) in the popular song genre of the bolero within the Hispanic Caribbean (Cuba, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic). She spent April 2000 researching at the Centro de Investigación y Desarrollo de la Música Cubana and the Museo de la Música in Havana, April 2002 researching at the Centro Nacional de Investigación, Documentación e Información Musical Carlos Chávez in Mexico City and was a visiting researcher at the Institute for Caribbean Studies and Fundación Musicalia in San Juan from January to March 2003. In July 2000 she was invited to participate in the Fourteenth International Colloquium held at the International Bolero Festival in Havana and in November 2002 was one of the speakers at the first conference on Latin music to be held at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. She is an active member of the Latin American branch of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music, Caribbean Research Seminar in the North and Cuba Research Forum.
She has guest lectured on the bolero at the Centre for Gender Studies of the University of Santiago de Chile (March 2001) and to MA Mexican Studies students at the University of Puerto Rico. Within the School of Modern Languages she teaches modules on contemporary Spanish and Latin American culture at undergraduate and masters level.
Dr Knights has published several articles on the bolero and is currently co-editing a volume on locating debates on national identity with Ian Biddle and a volume on music in Buffy the Vampire Slayer with Paul Attinello. She also recently published a piece in the groundbreaking Queering the Popular Pitch (New York and London: Routledge, 2006). She is on the advisory board of Music, Sound and the Moving Image, the editorial board of Popular Music History, the editorial collective of Radical Musicology and is music editor for the online Encyclopedia of Buffy Studies.
With Ian Biddle she co-organised the first International Conference of Popular Musics of the Hispanic and Lusophone Worlds and the ¡VAMOS! Latin and Lusophone festival (July 2006) in conjunction with Nik Barrera and Andrew Dixon (NAME) and Jill Bennison (Blue Sky Events).
Click here to view her university blog.
Megoran is a political geographer who recently moved from Sidney Sussex
College, Cambridge to take up a lectureship in human geography at
Newcastle University, in the school of Geography, Politics and
Sociology. He studies the role of geographies of the nation state
in post-Cold War inter-state relations and is currently exploring this
through research in two main areas. The first is the building of
nation-states in modern Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan, with particular
reference to border regions and boundary disputes. The second is the
place of religious ideas and the church in debates over the present
British government's involvement in the so-called 'war of terror.'
Dr Megoran has published on the politics of popular music in Uzbekistan, and how it relates to discourses of danger and national identity.
Click here to
access his personal webpage.
Studied at Clare College Cambridge and at York University, where his PhD was supervised by Wilfrid Mellers. He has previously taught at the University of Birmingham and The Open University. His research interests lie in the fields of popular music and the cultural theory of music. As Chair at Newcastle, a major interest was the practical implications of such research for the development of music pedagogy in a department dedicated to pursuing work across the whole range of musical genres. Since his retirement he has been acting as a Strategic Research Adviser for the centre and is Emeritus Professor of Music at the University of Newcastle.
Professor Middleton has published numerous articles on popular music topics and three books: Pop Music and the Blues (1972), Studying Popular Music (1990) and most recently, Voicing the Popular: On the Subjects of Popular Music (2006), for which he was awarded AHRB research leave. He is also working on a critical study of John Lennon for Polity Press. He was one of the founders of the leading journal in this field, Popular Music, and one of its editors from its beginnings in 1981 until recently. In recent years he has written chapters for the Cambridge Companion to Pop and Rock and The Cambridge Companion to Singing; for a new volume on Populaer Musik edited by Peter Wicke in the prestigious Handbuch der Musikwissenschaft; for The Musical Work: Reality or Invention? (edited by Michael Talbot) and for Western Music and Its Others: Representation and Appropriation in Music (edited by Georgina Born and Dave Hesmondhalgh). Professor Middleton has contributed articles to several important reference works, including Enciclopedia della musica (edited by Jean-Jacques Nattiez), the revised New Grove Dictionary - including a large part of a major new entry on 'Popular Music' - and he is Associate Editor for New Grove on popular music. He also acts as an Associate Editor for Blackwell's Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World, and has written many articles for this major new reference work. He edited a major collection on the subject of the analysis and interpretation of popular music – Reading Pop ( 2000), and was a co-editor of The Cultural Study of Music: A Critical Introduction (2003). He is the co-ordinating editor of the new Newcastle-based journal Radical Musicology.
Lecturer in the International Centre
for Music Studies, Dr Plastino was educated at the University of Rome, he gained a D.E.A. at the École
des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales of Paris and his PhD in
Ethno-Anthropological Sciences at the University of Rome in 1993. He has taught
ethnomusicology, organology and history of musical instruments at the
Universities of Bari and Calabria, Italy. Currently he teaches modules on World
Musics, World Beat, music history (on folk and popular musics) and is degree
programme director for the new BMus in Folk and Traditional Music.
Phil Powrie is Professor of French Cultural Studies and Dean of research for the Faculty. He was the director of a large AHRB-funded project on film adaptations of the Carmen story (1999-2002); the cultural history of this phenomenon, co-authored with colleagues in Ann Davies (Modern Languages, Newcastle), Bruce Babington (English, Newcastle) and Chris Perriam (Spanish, Manchester) will be published by Indiana University Press in 2007. He co-organised the music and film conference, 'See Hear ' held at Newcastle University in November 2000 with Vanessa Knights and subsequently edited a volume on film music, Changing Tunes: The Use of Pre-existing Music in Film (2006), with Robynn Stilwell.
Professor Powrie has written several pieces on music in the French cinema. These include work on Yann Tiersen's accordion music in Amelie, and music in the heritage cinema. He is preparing a commissioned article on the meanings of Paolo Conte's song 'Sparring Partner' in Francois Ozon's film 5x2. He hopes to write a volume on music in French cinema.
Patricia Oliart has been a lecturer in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies in Newcastle since September 2003. Her academic interest in popular music has run parallel to her work as a lecturer, researcher and consultant on gender, ethnicity, cultural change, and education in urban and rural areas in the Andes and Amazonia. Very early in her career she published articles on popular music in Peru, Uruguay and Mexico. Her current work on music relates to her interest in racial relations in Peru.
In 2005 she prepared “Gendering Mestizaje: Peruvian Media and the Cholo Divas of the 21st Century” for the International Conference on Mestizaje/Mestiçagens hosted by the Centre of Latin American Studies at Cambridge University. She is currently writing “Modernising the Peruvian Huayno: Examples from Ayacucho and Apurimac” first delivered as a presentation for the workshop Music and Performance in the Andes organised by CIASE, (Centre for Indigenous American Studies and Exchange), Department of Anthropology in Saint Andrews.
As a singer she has recorded several albums by Peruvian composer Juan Luis Dammert.
Dr. Smith completed her Ph.D at the University of Leeds in June 1999. Her thesis focused on changing identities among the Uyghur nationality of Xinjiang, NW China, and contemporary Uyghur-Han relations. Postgraduate research was funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, UK, and included a year of ethnographic fieldwork. Current research interests include the formation and transformation of ethnic and national identities among the Uyghur of Xinjiang, NW China; the relationship between repression and the poles of symbolic resistance (especially Islamic renewal) and linguistic/cultural accommodation in Xinjiang since the 1997 Ghulja riots; competing ownerships and representations of Uyghur identities in popular music; and socio-cultural analyses of Uyghur proverbs. Within the School of Modern Languages she is Degree Programme Director for the BA Hons Chinese/Japanese and Cultural Studies degree (TT41). She is also coordinator of ANNE (Asia Network North East), an informal forum of Asianists at Newcastle University.
Dr. Smith organised a multi-disciplinary, trans-national panel 'Representations of Uyghur National Identity in Popular Culture and Everyday Discourse' for the Association for Asian Studies Annual Meeting, New York, 2003. This brought together scholars from Europe and the US, working in the disciplines of political science, social anthropology, and ethnomusicology. She was co-organiser of the multi-disciplinary international conference 'Situating The Uyghurs between China and Central Asia,' with Dr Ildiko Beller-Hann, Dr Rachel Harris and Dr Cristina Cesaro in 2004, and is co-editor of a forthcoming volume of papers arising from that meeting to be published in the Ashgate anthropological series 'Anthropology and Cultural History in Asia and the Indo-Pacific'. She was an invited speaker at the UK-Israel conference 'China and the Middle East: Central Asian Connections', held on May 16-18 2006 in Haifa.
Aside from academic activities, she has
worked as a researcher and interpreter on a multi-media project
documenting the history of Chinese civilisation. She writes occasional
articles for the UK media and acts as consultant to a number of
independent documentary filmmakers, news correspondents, and
governmental and non-governmental organisations. She is a trained