Monthly Archives: November 2012

Centre Staff and Student Speak on Byzantine Music in New York

Senior Lecturer Dr Alexander Lingas, who has been spending the autumn term as a Visiting Research Fellow in Hellenic Studies at Princeton University, will be joining a distinguished group of scholars offering presentations on ancient and modern facets of Byzantine music in New York City. On Thursday, 29 November he will open a series of lectures at Queens College of the City University of New York with an introduction to the history of music in Byzantium.

On Saturday, 8 December he will present the opening paper of the ‘Mostly Orthros 2012’ conference jointly sponsored by the Axion Estin Foundation and the Sophia Institute at Union Theological Seminary. Dr Lingas will speak on ‘Byzantine Chant in the American Spiritual Marketplace’, after which City University London Ph.D. candidate Spyridon Antonopoulos will turn to the fifteenth century with a paper entitled ‘The Kalophonic Sticherarion of Manuel Chrysaphes: A Case Study in Reception History’.

For conference abstracts and additional information, please see the website of the Axion Estin Foundation.

CUNY Byzantine Chant Flyer

Centre staff and recent graduate featured in Independent article on music degrees and associated career opportunities

An article published today (22 November) in the Creative Arts supplement of The Independent newspaper features quotations from the Director of Undergraduate Studies, Dr Christopher Wiley as well as a profile of recent City BMus graduate, Dionysios Kyropoulos.

In the article ‘Notes on working in music’, by journalist David Crookes, Dionysios explains how his passion for classical singing and opera led him to the UK (from Greece) and to City University London, in order to benefit from solid academic foundations for his studies in tandem with high-quality singing training.

While at City, Dionysios recounts, he discovered his passion for research: ‘The discovery of the impact that academic work can have on performance, and, vice versa, how practical research through performance can assist its academic counterpart absolutely fascinates me. The course helped me make this discovery.’ 

Dr Chris Wiley tops a list of UK academics quoted in the article, who between them explain that a music degree can open up a wealth of career opportunities for the aspiring student. Chris notes that ‘There certainly is more to being a successful musician than simply playing an instrument’, before outlining some of the many career-enhancing benefits of studying music at university.

Click here to read the full article

Dr Christopher Wiley addresses SEDA Annual Conference at Aston University, Birmingham

Dr Christopher Wiley addressed the 17th Annual Conference of the Staff and Educational Development Association (SEDA), ‘Excellence in Teaching: recognising, enhancing, evaluating and achieving impact’, held at Aston Business School Conference Centre, Aston University, Birmingham on 15-16 November 2012.

His presentation, entitled ‘Standardized Module Evaluation for Teaching Excellence and Enhancement: Views of Students and Staff at a Single UK Higher Education Institution’, discussed the principles underpinning the standardization of module evaluation and its advantages and disadvantages.

Drawing on the standardized module evaluation implemented across City University London last year and some of the more localized processes it replaced, as well as the views of students and staff interviewed as part of his research, Dr Wiley also considered other measures by which teaching excellence might instead be recognized such as student-led teaching award schemes.

In the course of the workshop session, Dr Wiley facilitated a lively discussion on the relative merits and drawbacks of standardized module evaluation, exploring the processes currently implemented at different institutions, sharing best practices, and working towards action planning for the future.

Dr Christopher Wiley to join Turning Technologies’ Distinguished Educator Programme

Dr Christopher Wiley, Senior Lecturer in Music at City University London, has been appointed as a Distinguished Educator by Turning Technologies, global leader in voting, polling, and assessment systems used by schools, universities, and corporations.

In this role, Dr Wiley will be responsible for sharing with the company’s growing community of users in the UK and Europe best practice, pedagogical applications, and his own experience as a music lecturer using Turning Technologies’ response technology.

Dr Wiley, who joins the Programme as the first Distinguished Educator to be appointed from the Arts and Humanities, will sit alongside world-renowned educators such as Dr Eric Mazur, Harvard Professor and creator of the highly successful peer instruction method of teaching, as well as other HE professionals from across the world.

Commenting on his appointment, Dr Chris Wiley said, “I have been using Turning Technologies’ electronic voting systems since 2008 and was awarded a University Prize for Teaching Innovation the following year for my pioneering work in this area. I was invited to join the Distinguished Educator programme following my presentation at Turning Technologies’ User Conference at Aarhus University, Denmark in June 2012.

“As a role centred on the provision of academic expertise for a commercial enterprise, the Distinguished Educator position also embodies City University London’s unique focus on ‘academic excellence for business and the professions’.”

Read the full news release here:–senior-lecturer-in-music-at-city-university-london–to-join-turning-technologi,c9322676

Centre for Music Studies Concert, Tuesday 13th November: Clare Hammond

Clare Hammond, a recent graduate from the Doctorate of Musical Arts programme at City University London, will give a recital in the Performance Space at 7pm on Tuesday 13 November as part of the music department’s evening concert series. Her programme will include works by Handel, Szymanowski, Beethoven and Scriabin.

Acclaimed by The Daily Telegraph as a pianist of “amazing power and panache”, Clare Hammond has performed across Europe, Russia and Canada and has appeared recently at the Wigmore and Barbican Halls in London and the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. Her Purcell Room debut for the Park Lane Group concert series was praised by The Guardian for its “crisp precision and unflashy intelligence”.

More information is available online at Clare’s website:

Recent Performances and other Activity of Ian Pace

Ian Pace, Lecturer in Music and Head of Performance at City University, is also continuing to pursue an active international performing career. In August 2012 he was a resident artist at the University of Santiago, Chile, where he gave two major recitals (featuring music of Beethoven-Liszt, Debussy, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Brian Ferneyhough, Salvatore Sciarrino, Marco Stroppa, Michael Finnissy and others) and a series of lectures, masterclasses and composer workshops. This was followed by a concert in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Upon returning to the UK, he gave a major performance at A Festival of Light in Birmingham, a special festival devoted to the work of Karlheinz Stockhausen, where on August 20th he gave highly-admired performances of Kontakte (with percussionist Chris Brannick and sound projection by Jonty Harrison) and Klavierstück X, a staple of his repertoire.

On October 27th he gave an important recital at the ISCM World Music Days in association with the TRANSIT Festival in Leuven, Belgium, to which Ian has been a regular visitor since 2000, and where he has previously premiered works of Ferneyhough, Richard Barrett, Wieland Hoban, Gordon Downie and Horatiu Radulescu. This year he gave a concert of new works by the Canadian composer Heather Hindman, Latvina  Santa Buss, Ukranian Masym Kolomiiets, German Harald Muenz, and Norwegian Herman Vogt, as well as a TRANSIT commission by the veteran Belgian composer André Laporte, his new work for piano and tape, Graffiti on a Royal Ground.

On November 6th he gave a recital of four piano sonatas at City University – by Karl Amadeus Hartmann, Elliott Carter, Pierre Boulez and Serge Prokofiev – all written within three years of the end of World War Two, connecting with his own research into the reconstruction of musical life and the emergence of the musical avant-garde during this period. On Tuesday November 27th, 19:00, again at City, he will perform Kontakte with Chris Brannick, with sound projection by Peiman Khosravi. The concert will also include a performance of Benjamin Boretz’s Downtime for piano and tape, which he performed at Queen’s University, Belfast earlier in the year and has recorded, and a performance by improvising artist John Wall.

On December 8th Ian will give the world premiere of Paul Rhys’s Piano Concerto in London. 2013 will include performances in Portugal, Austria, Italy, and Greece and a recital in the new London Ear festival (for which he is an artistic advisor) including the UK premiere of Marco Stroppa’s complete miniature estrose, Book 1. He will also be making a new recording of John Cage’s landmark cycle Music of Changes.

On a different note, Ian is also known for initiating extended (and sometimes heated) debates on matters musical and political, sometimes on social media and other online forums. One such which took place at the end of October concerned the recent protest carried out by the German composer Johannes Kreidler at the Donaueschingen Music Days, protesting against the merger of the Südwestrundfunk radio orchestras in Baden-Baden/Freiburg and Stuttgart. A long debate ensued on the ethics and strategies of protest in general, bringing in a wide range of figures including composers Richard Barrett, Daniel James Wolf, Samuel Vriezen, Jim Aitchison, Mark Barden and Patricia Alessandrini, musicologists Seth Brodsky and Richard Wattenbarger, and others. This was all copied and posted on Ian’s personal blog, here, whilst a PDF version of the debate has been prepared by Chris Swithinbank and placed on his blog here . All those interested in issues of music and politics, and the viability of protest and its optimal strategies, should look at this involved and sometimes charged debate.

Centre for Music Studies Research Seminar, Wednesday 14th November: Dr Elina Hytönen

The Centre for Music Studies is pleased to announce that Dr Elina Hytönen (University of Eastern Finland/King’s College London) will present at the Research Seminar Series on Wednesday 14th November. The topic of Dr Hytönen’s presentation is ‘Hidden Authorities and Gendered Positions in the Contemporary Jazz Musicians’ Work Environment’.

Wednesday 14th November 2012, 5:30-7:30pm
Room AG09, Ground Floor, College Building
City University London

All welcome.


Hidden Authorities and Gendered Positions in the Contemporary Jazz Musicians

Abstract:  Professional jazz musicians are an interesting mobile group who can work in different venues, and with different musicians, every night of the week, travelling long distances for gigs. It is therefore the venues that create the scene, and which consequently affect the musicians’ views of themselves and their performance. The venues offer the musicians a chance to create and maintain their identities as musicians as well as provide the place where musicians socialise, creating and maintaining critical personal and professional networks. Venues create a setting within which musicians seek and create meaning in relation to their work. These are the places where they want to feel welcome and at home. This aspect is still not widely researched. Venues and their acoustics also affect the musicians’ well-being very straightforwardly through the level of physical strain required to play effectively. Within the venues the musicians are also dependent on and constrained by technical support and sound production, club protocols and the setting itself. These factors also condition the music as the musicians arelikely to adapt to the styles and conduct that are felt appropriate to the particular setting. All these connections are multilayered and complex. This paper aims at highlighting the musicians’ point of view on how performance places create a vibrant scene with which musicians feel a strong sense of belonging. The aim is to discuss the hidden authorities and power relationsaffecting the venues and the work environment. By looking more closely at some female jazz musicians’ experiences of performance venues, I also demonstrate some of the gender differences set up by the venues and the organisations. The places where jazz is being performed are heavily gendered, creating separation between male and female musicians. The venues sometimes seem to create different set of rules and expectations for male and female musicians, which can then create friction and separation within the band.  The paper is based on on-going research that consists of interviews with professional jazz musicians and the observation of some performance venues in the United Kingdom.

Ben Schoeman performs as soloist with the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra

On 31 October and 1 November 2012 City University student Ben Schoeman (DMA) is performing Rachmaninov’s Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini, Op. 43 with the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of the American conductor Robert Maxym. The concert form part of the JPO’s fourth annual symphony season. It is one of South Africa’s prominent symphony orchestras. Ben’s performance of Liszt’s Piano Concertos nos. 1 and 2 with the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra was televised several times on South African national television during 2012.