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MRes PhD DMA MPhil

School - School of Arts & Media

Subject area - Music

Start Date(s): September, January, May


One year full-time
Two years part-time

Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
Two years full-time
Four years part-time

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Three years full-time
Five years part-time

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)
Three years full-time
Five years part-time

N.B. The minimum duration of the DMA may be reduced to 2 years where the candidate holds a Master's degree recognised for this purpose by the Senate or has been engaged for at least 1 year full-time on an approved programme of further study or research

In Brief:

  • Part-time study option
  • Based at MediaCityUK
  • International students can apply

Subject Overview

The research areas for Music are:

  • Musicology (including critical and popular musicology, jazz studies)
  • Composition (including electro-acoustic composition)
  • Performance (including conducting and arranging)
  • Cross-disciplinary approaches to music (music and media, cultural studies etc.)

Led by professor Dr Tim Wise and Dr Nicola Spelman, this research area encompasses historical and critical musicology, popular musicology and jazz studies.  The University of Salford has an established track record of research into popular music and jazz and has supervised the work of research students working across genres and historical periods.  The supervisory team has an impressive publications record and disseminate their work in a range of international settings.  As a postgraduate research student, you would benefit from a regular programme of activities and conferences which support the development of your research work.  You will also benefit from the cross disciplinary research which is frequently undertaken between music, media and cultural studies researchers within the University.


Led by Professors Steve Davismoon, Peter Graham, Alan Williams, this area benefits from a wealth of expertise and world leading research work.  Composition within the Directorate ranges from writing music for brass bands to symphony orchestra to interactive, mixed media and electro-acoustic music, and the supervisory team draws on a wealth of experience, working with leading ensembles and arts organisations around the world.  As a postgraduate research student working within the Music Directorate, you will be able to develop ideas and techniques, working to develop your own personal style and technique.  The cross-genre research work of music staff means that composers of all styles and interests will be supported at Salford.  The performance, studio and media facilities on offer within the Directorate will also provide you with opportunities to work in different compositional environments.


Led by Dr Robin Dewhurst and Brett Baker, this research area encourages high level performers to engage in practice-led research enquiry and performance research projects.  The supervisory team includes performers, arrangers and conductors who have worked in a range of international performance settings across musical genres. As a performance researcher, you will benefit from professional insights from the supervisory team as well as the Directorate’s extensive performance programme and ensembles and musicians affiliated with music at Salford.

In the national Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 2008 75% of the Directorate’s music research was ranked as of ‘international quality’.  Since the RAE, the directorate has continued to invest in research and develop its international links.  For example, in 2010 Professor Tony Whyton was awarded c.€1 million by HERA to lead an international research programme which examines the cultural practices and inherited traditions of Europe jazz scenes (  Similarly, Professor Steve Davismoon is currently a co-investigator in the Listening Cities: Knowing Europe through its Sounds project. This project seeks to promote a heightened awareness of acoustic communication within urban environments and contexts.

Entry Requirements

1st class or upper second class undergraduate degree.

Masters degree is preferred but not essential. However, applicants without a Masters degree should provide evidence of previous research methods training.

APEL – We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.
The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English requirement for non-UK/ EU students

Overall IELTS score of at least 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any one element.

We offer four entry points – October, January, April and July. Applications can be submitted at any point within the year.

Applicant Profile

You should have a first degree that provides a foundation in the principles of music. This could include a music degree but also Performance Arts and other social science and humanities subjects (such as sociology or cultural studies for musicology students).  Evidence of ability to study and critically appraise literature independently is essential and candidates with Masters qualification are preferred. Experience of professional settings or prior publication is also preferable but is not essential.

As a student embarking on a postgraduate research degree you will be assigned a supervisory team, to help guide and mentor you throughout your time at the University. However, you are ultimately expected to take responsibility for managing your learning and will be expected to initiate discussions, ask for the help that you need and be proactive in your approach to study.

All students will be required to attend for an interview.

International Students - Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS)

International Students are required by the Home Office and/or the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) to apply for an Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) Certificate before they begin studying their course. You may need to obtain an ATAS Certificate before you come to the UK in order for you to comply with Home Office regulations. Please refer to your offer conditions.

You can find out if your programme requires an ATAS by checking the FCO website at with your JACS code which will be on your offer letter should you choose to make an application. If you cannot find it please contact International Conversion team at If you have any queries relating directly to ATAS please contact the ATAS team on

You can apply for your ATAS Certificate via this link:

Current Student Research

Research Topics

PhD - Tom Sykes

Tom Sykes is currently in his final year of his PhD programme.
Tom is researching the effect of digital technology on the dissemination and consumption of ‘niche’ genres of popular music.  He has recently had a chapter of his work accepted for publication in a forthcoming Ashgate book about European popular music. The book chapter, provisionally titled ‘Transgressing borders in cyberspace’, discusses the way in which recorded music is now so easily distributed over the internet, transgressing not only geographical borders but often stylistic differences, language barriers and censorship laws, not to mention copyright legislation and royalty agreements.  Tom is focusing on ‘niche’ or ‘specialist’ popular music, with a particular focus on jazz, looking particularly at how digital media, especially the internet, have affected the dissemination and consumption of jazz.  He is currently undertaking audience questionnaire surveys and interviews at selected jazz festivals, and carrying out online surveys.  Tom has also presented research at several conferences including; the Sound Property conference (Salford, 2009); Mediating Jazz conference (Manchester, 2009), Leeds International Jazz Conference 2010, and the Rhythm Changes Conference (Amsterdam, 2011).

DMA - David Thornton

David Thornton is regarded as one of the foremost euphonium players and teachers of his generation and has a global reputation as a performer and clinician. His work as a soloist, conductor and educator is renowned throughout the brass playing world to have a distinct hallmark of extreme virtuosity, professionalism and an ability to connect with audiences like few others in his field.  In 2001 he was named as 'The International Euphonium Player Of The Year' and in 2004 his debut solo CD, ‘Three Worlds’, was awarded Solo CD of the Year by the British Bandsman magazine.  David’s research will explore the interaction of brass instruments with electronics and will include the commissioning of new compositions from some of the UK’s leading composers in the field.

Read more about David Thornton.

DMA - Brett Baker

President of the British Trombone Society, principal trombone of the Black Dyke Band and a clinician for Michael Rath Brass Instruments, Brett Baker is viewed as one of Europe’s leading brass performers and educators, and is passionate about encouraging composers to write pioneering new solo repertoire for his genre. He is the most recorded trombone soloist in the UK and by the age of 24 had won every major British brass band competition.  Originally from Gloucestershire in 1992 Brett moved north to study at Salford University,simultaneously joining the Fairey Band and having many contest successes. He studied with Professor David King, whilst also taking Business Economics.  In 2000 he was invited to join the Black Dyke Band under the direction of Dr. Nicholas Childs having further contest successes. As well as a playing schedule of 100 concerts a year Brett enjoys presenting workshops specializing in solo performance.  In addition to his work as a performer, he is also acquiring a burgeoning reputation as a conductor and adjudicator. Having associations with many youth bands in the North of England, Brett has also achieved contest success with Northop, Ratby and Longridge bands. As an adjudicator Brett has judged many competitions and festivals including the International Trombone Association in the USA and the National Solo Championships in Switzerland. In the brass band arena he has adjudicated at the Championship section level in Wychavon Festival of Brass; Buxton Festival; The Cornish Brass Band Association; and the Scottish Area Regional Championships.

PhD – Nick Katuszonek

This practice-led PhD focuses on the interrelationship between the contemporary jazz, popular culture and national Identity. Using a series of practice-led performance projects in Norway and the UK, this PhD explores the constructed nature of musical practice, questioning well trodden mythologies that surround jazz practice. This research provides a way of understanding and interrogates the role of the drummer in contemporary settings and explores the various cultural negotiations, codes and conventions at play in the area of creative music making.

Training and Skills

All postgraduate research students are expected to attend the College’s research methods seminars during your first year of study, covering subjects such as conducting a literature review, methods of data collection, research governance and ethics, and analysis, presentation, interpretation and rigour in qualitative research.

In addition, the University offers all postgraduate research students an extensive range of free training activities to help develop your research and transferable skills. The Salford Postgraduate Research Training Programme (SPoRT) has been designed to equip researchers both for your university studies, and for your future careers whether in academia, elsewhere in the public sector, or in industry and the private sector.

Assessment Links

As a postgraduate research student at the University of Salford, you are required to meet a number of milestones in order to re-register for each year of study. These ‘progression points’ are an important aid for both you and your supervisory team and it is essential that you complete them on time.

Learning Agreement:  this is completed by you and your supervisor collaboratively in the first 3 months of your research programme. It encourages both of you to develop a thorough and consistent understanding of your individual and shared roles and responsibilities in your research partnership.

Annual Progress Report:  this report is completed by your supervisor at the end of each year of study, and reports on your achievements in the past year, the likelihood that you will submit on time, confirmation of the Learning Agreement and relevant training undertaken.

Self Evaluation Report: this is completed by you at the end of each year of study. It asks you to comment on your academic progress, supervisory arrangements, research environment, research training, and relevant training undertaken.

Interim Assessment: this is an assessment of your progress by a panel. It takes place towards the end of your first year, and is designed to ensure you have reached a threshold of academic performance, by assessing your general progress. The assessment comprises a written report, presentation and oral examination by a Panel. You must successfully complete it in order to register for your second year.

Internal Evaluation: this will take place towards the end of the second year and successful completion is required in order to continue onto your third year of study. You will be expected to show strong progress in your PhD study reflected in the submission of a substantial piece of work, generally at least 4 chapters of your thesis.

Research Profile

Research Excellence

The School currently has more than 80 postgraduate research students and it is a very international community.
Each music research area is lead by experienced teams of senior researchers (Readers, Professors), whose expertise has international recognition. All our research leaders either publish their research in peer reviewed internationally recognised journals and are regularly invited to speak at international conferences or work in international practice-based settings for music. Music researchers lead on a wide range of established collaborations with UK, international academic and industry partners.
The research areas for Music are:

  • Musicology (including critical and popular musicology, jazz studies)
  • Composition (including electro-acoustic composition)
  • Performance (including conducting and arranging)

Cross-disciplinary approaches to music (music and media, cultural studies etc.)

Staff Profiles

Professor Stephen Davismoon

Stephen Davismoon is Professor of Contemporary Composition and Director of Music.  He has written for a wide variety of media: solo instrumental; chamber; orchestral; vocal and electro-acoustic/sound installation works he has had performances of his work in Brazil, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Holland, Iceland, Italy, Lithuania, Spain, Switzerland, UK, Ukraine, Uruguay and the USA. Many of his works combine traditional/acoustic instruments/voices with real-time/interactive electronic transformations – always seeking to create unified musical works that possess endless possibilities for the performer and listener. His use of live/interactive electronics in his work commonly consists of subtle, complex and dynamic systems that are always sensitive to the dynamic, rhythmic and harmonic gestures of the ‘live’ performer(s) seeking to enhance – complementarily - the performance and listening space.  He is currently undertaking the editorship of a large collection of writings on the work of Luciano Berio.
Stephen would welcome enquiries about postgraduate research supervision in the following areas:

  • Composition: including work with 'traditional' orchestral/vocal forces and/or interfaces with digital technology; as well as work that wishes to explore ideas of interactive or generative music.
  • Musicology: Contemporary Musicology, in particular music of the European Avant-garde

Stephen's recent research students has explored subjects including: original composition within the contexts of the Maltese Islands/Pibroch tradition/Polish Sonorists/Femininity/Markovian and Stochastic Processes.  Theses that encompass areas such as The development of a multi-channel touch-sensitive sound diffusion system; explorations in studies of psychology for the contemporary vocal performer. 

Professor Stephen Davismoon's research profile

Professor Peter Graham

Peter Graham read music at Edinburgh and London Universities (Goldsmiths’ College) and following spells in publishing in New York and London he is currently Professor of Composition atThe University of Salford.

His music for brass and wind is performed across the globe, from China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Singapore in the Far East, across North and South America and in every major European
country. Recent compositional projects include 44 Scotland Street, a work for wind orchestra and actor written in collaboration with author Alexander McCall Smith and recorded and released on the Nimbus label, and Voyage to Worlds Unknown which will premiere in Carnegie Hall New York in March 2012. Awards include the American Bandmasters Association Ostwald Award for Original Composition for Symphonic Winds and the Iles Medal of the Worshipful Company of Musicians.

More information on Professor Peter Graham and his work

Professor Alan Williams

Alan Williams is Associate Head for Research within the School of Media, Music and Performance.  His compositions have received numerous radio broadcasts including performances by the BBC Philharmonic orchestra, and the BBC Singers. His recent violin duos Scenes from Ordinary Days were performed in Adelaide in May 2007, Queensland in October 2007, and in Calgary, Canada in January 2008. His choral work Divers Winged Creatures was a prizewinning piece in the MDR Radio Choir International Composition competition, and was premiered in Leipzig and subsequently broadcast in April 2008.  In November 2009 his Leverhulme and Arts Council funded large scale piece Wonder: a Scientific Oratorio, commissioned by the BBC Philharmonic, was premiered by them alongside Salford Choral Society and the BBC Singers. This was a collaboration with the Jodrell Bank centre for Astrophysics, and was commissioned as part of the UK’s contribution to the International Year of Astronomy. 2010 saw the premiere of Bog Bodies, a trio for flute, clarinet and piano by GNU in Rio de Janeiro. This piece will be broadcast in their performance by Brazilian national radio in 2011. He is developing a partnership between Salford University and the State University of Rio de Janeiro (UNIRIO) and is working on a joint music theatre project with Dr Marcos Vieira Lucas from UNIRIO for performance in 2012.  Professor  Williams welcomes proposals for postgraduate research in the following areas: composition, interaction of new technology and contemporary music, contemporary music and culture, contemporary Hungarian culture and music.

Alan would welcome inquiries about postgraduate supervision in the following areas:

Composition for live acoustic instruments; music theatre; writing contemporary music for choir; music for live ensemble and digital media; the combination of scientific ideas with music. I also welcome inquiries in musicology of contemporary ‘art’ music, especially in Eastern and Central Europe, with special emphasis on Hungary, Kurtag, Bartok and Ligeti.

Recent pieces have included an oratorio for the BBC Singers, the BBC Philharmonic and Salford Choral Society, including data from Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics; music for MDR Radio Choir, Leipzig; chamber pieces for Gruppo Novo da UNIRIO, Brazil; I am leading a bid exploring musical applications in audio-based social media; developing a chamber opera project to take place in Brazil; and working with Psappha on combining contemporary music with new interactive video technology.

Professor Alan Williams' research profile

Dr Robin Dewhurst

Robin Dewhurst undertakes practice-led research in composition and performance and is particularly interested in the intersection of jazz, popular and world music within contemporary hybrid formats including music for small and large ensembles, music production and music in the media. As a Reader in Music, Robin has been active across a wide range of genres and his compositions and arrangements have featured internationally in concert performance, recordings and broadcasts for brass, wind, big band, orchestra and choir, film, TV and radio. Robin has also pursued a number of research themes in the field of community music with an emphasis on music’s role in the promotion of health and well-being. In addition to his roles as Academic Head of Performance for Jazz and Popular Music and Director of the Doctor of Musical Arts programme, the larger part of Robin’s teaching and research work is in the fields of Composition, Arranging, Performance, Community Music and Professional Practice.
In 2007 Robin Dewhurst was appointed as Honorary Music Advisor for Her Majesty's Royal Marines, a privileged position last occupied by Sir Malcolm Sargent.  In 2010 he joined the University’s steering group for the Health and Well Being Theme and led the development of an inter-faculty Centre for Creative Media and Public Health, following his work as part of the VC’s Iconic Projects for MediaCityUK exploring the impact of Music in management of anxiety and depression.  He is currently a co-investigator for an AHRC-funded project that collaborates with arts festivals in challenging notions of audience and performer within musical performances which translate diaspora and refugee cultural experience.

Robin would be happy to hear from postgraduate researchers with an interest in a range of areas including:

Practice-based doctoral studies in musical performance, including jazz and popular music, composition, music teaching, music in the media and music's role in the promotion of health and well being. His ongoing study of the music of Gil Evans has been noted internationally.

Robin leads the Doctor of Musical Arts (Performance) programme and has supervised conductors and instrumentalists as well as composers and researchers in interdisciplinary areas including music and health.

Professor Robin Dewhurst's research profile

Dr Nicola Spelman

Nicola Spelman’s research interests surround issues of representation within popular music and she has a growing reputation in the field of anti-psychiatry and popular music. She was awarded a PhD in 2009 for her thesis All the Madmen: Popular Music, Anti-Psychiatry and the Myths of Madness, and her book Popular Music & the Myths of Madness is soon to be published by Ashgate as part of their Popular & Folk Music series. Nicola has delivered a number of guest lectures and conference papers on the subject of music and madness; her most recent,‘“Just my Librium and me and my EST makes three”: Strategies of Psychiatric Resistance in Popular Songs and Literary Works’, was for the University of Northumbria’s LitPop: Writing and Popular Music conference in June 2011.
Nicola’s research interests also include the teaching and assessment of popular music composition. In recognition of this she was asked to disseminate her ideas at the IASPM Conference Popular Music Studies: Where Now? for a session entitled ‘Teaching Popular Music: Methods and Approaches’. Since 1995 she has played a key role in the development of popular music education at Salford, designing and developing modules in a range of subject areas and co-writing courses such as the BA (Hons) Popular Musicology. Having fulfilled the role of External Advisor for other HE Institutions in the UK, Nicola is currently External Examiner for the BA (Hons) Popular Music Studies at Liverpool John Moores University.

Dr Nicola Spelman's research profile

Research students also benefit from research expertise in music from across the School.  Music supervisors and related specialisms include:

Professor George McKay

George has research interests in the cultural politics of music, improvisation and community music, jazz and popular music, and music and disability.

Dr Kirsty Fairclough

Dr Fairclough is able to supervise on pop music and stardom. Kirsty is a co-editor of "The Music Documentary: Acid Rock to Electropop", Routlege 2013

Dr Michael Goddard

Michael currently supervising PhD on electronic dance music and anonymity.  He is a co-editor of two books on noise.

Dr Ben Halligan

Ben Halligan is currently supervising PhD ("practice as research") on the Ankara rock scene, and an MPhil on liveness and myths of touring. He is a co-editor of "The Music Documentary: Acid Rock to Electropop", Routlege 2013 as well as 2 books on noise. 


Career Prospects

Students leaving the Directorate with a postgraduate research degree are well placed to lead and manage research and development activities in a number of areas of the cultural and creative industries. This includes performance and arts industries, publishing and media.  Globally, a postgraduate research qualification is usually a prerequisite for an academic career and several of our alumni are now senior academics.

Previous students have taken their research expertise and are currently working in a range of high profile settings, from world leading ensembles to writing music for leading practitioners. Others have gone forward to academic positions or found industry positions. We encourage the maintenance of links between graduating research students and their host research group and supervisor. This means the University can become part of the developing professional network that students take forward into their future careers.  For example, recent graduates such as Craig Vear, Shara Rambarran and Nicola Smith have all found lecturing positions in University settings.

Alumni Profile

Dr Neil Yates (DMA Performance 2012) - Multi-instrumentalist composer, arranger and educator Neil Yates studied music at Salford University and Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. He stepped out into the professional music business in 1991, as a London-based jazz trumpeter working most notably for the BBC Big Band and Johnny Dankworth Orchestra. He moved on to higher profile session musician work in 1994, performing and recording with The Brand New Heavies, Supergrass, Black Grape, Lighthouse Family, Alison Moyet, Will Young, Raw Stylus, Suggs, Matt Bianco and Robbie Williams. To address his own creative urges in 1999 Neil moved out of London and travelled the festivals of UK and Ireland for a year in a caravan, eventually settling in a North Wales beauty spot to write and record his award winning first solo jazz album "New Origins" and his new album "Five Countries",  released on Edition Records November 2011. He also became much involved in Celtic music, performing, writing and arranging for traditional music legends Michael McGoldrick and Kate Rusby. As an educator Neil lectures in music at Salford University, Leeds College of Music, and previously taught at Birmingham Conservatoire, Royal Northern College of Music and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. He has also receives large scale commissions as composer, including an hour long suite for brass called "Sketches of a Northern town" and two hour antiphonal suite for jazz orchestra entitled "Surroundings", nominated for British Composers Award 2011. Recently Neil returned to some commercial session work, including performances with Elbow, Katie Meluah and Rumer. He has just completed a four year Doctor of Musical Arts degree and is the winner of Arts Council Wales' Creative Wales Award 2012.

Dr Eddie Severn (DMA in performance 2009) has had a performing career spanning more than 25 years as a lead trumpet player in the commercial music world and as a soloist playing his own compositions. Severn has performed with musicians including Maria Schneider, Phil Woods, Dave Leibman, Clay Aiken, The Temptations, Kenny Rogers, The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra,and the English Symphony Orchestra. In addition to being the former lead trumpet player with the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra for 6 years, he has also performed and recorded music for television, radio and theatre, as well as on numerous pop sessions and touring shows. The DMA has led him to a career as an educator, and he has been on the faculty at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Napier University in Edinburgh, Scotland, and the Birmingham Conservatoire of Music in England and is currently Director of Jazz Studies at Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania.

Dr Kim Kuok Ip (PhD in composition 2011) is a freelance composer and educator in his home city of Macao, China. His musical compositions had been selected by a handful of renowned performing artists and music groups in the past years. He had premiered his works in Hong Kong, London, and Manchester and is involved in music arrangement and production of music scores locally and abroad over recent time.

Dr Beate Peter (PhD in popular musicology 2011) is a lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University, whose research interests focus on psychology of performance, including performers (artists) and other participants (audience) in a live setting. Dr Peter applies social methods as well as psychological theory in her analysis of perception of and immersion in performance, looking not only at the individual but also the formation of communities.

Dr Nigel Clarke (DMA in Composition 2008) - Nigel Clarke studied composition with Paul Patterson at the Royal Academy of Music, where he won many awards including the Queen's Commendation for Excellence, the Academy's top award. On completion of his studies he spent a year as 'Young Composer in Residence' at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, writing music for the dance and drama departments. Back in the UK, Nigel has held a range of appointments including Composition and Contemporary Music Tutor (at the Royal Academy of Music, London), Head of Composition (at the London College of Music and Media) and Associate Composer to the world famous Black Dyke Mills Band. He has also been guest professor at the Xinjiang Arts Institute in North-West China, Associate Composer (at the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall), Associate Composer (at the Band of HM Grenadier Guards) and Visiting Tutor (at the Royal Northern College of Music). More recently he became Associate Composer to Belgian brass band champions Brass Band Buizingen. He has also been elected as an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music. In 2008 Nigel was awarded the title Doctor of Musical Arts by the University of Salford.  In 1997 the United States of America Ambassador (William J. Crowe, Jr.) invited Nigel to join the United States' International Visitor Leadership Programme sponsored by the US Information Agency. This offered him the unique opportunity to tour the USA in order to observe and experience different aspects of musical culture including jazz, classical and Native American music. This tour culminated in a performance of his work 'Samurai' by the 'Presidents Own' United States Marine Band. Nigel's music is extensively played and broadcast internationally, and he has received performances in Argentina, Australia, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Canada, Colombia, China, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Kosovo, Lebanon, Macedonia, Norway, South Korea, New Zealand, Russia, Serbia, Singapore, Turkey, Ukraine, the United States of America, as well as throughout the European Union. To date Nigel has had many works recorded on over 45 CDs including two critically acclaimed, dedicated discs of his music. Nigel's music is published by 'Brasswind Publications´, 'Maecenas Music´, 'Novello & Co´, 'Peters Edition' and 'Studio Music Company´. 

Dr Luc Vertommen - Luc Vertommen studied music theory and practiced the cornet and the piano at the music academies of Mechelen and Willebroek. Luc completed his higher musical education at the Leuven Lemmens Institute with a triple Laureate Certificate for Trumpet, Music History and Band Conducting. Subsequently, he obtained a First Prize Chamber Music at the Brussels Royal Music Conservatory. Later, he also obtained a master's degree in Wind Band Conducting at the Leuven Lemmens institute. After his training, Luc worked with many leading Belgian (symphonic) orchestra's and ensembles as free lance trumpet player. Shortly after, he was immersed full time in the band music world: on the one hand as Brass and Instrumental Ensemble teacher at the music academy of Zaventem and as Band Conducting teacher at the Servais Academy of Halle. On the other hand as conductor of Brass Band Buizingen, of the Royal Fanfare Band 'De Berthoutzonen' of Hallaar and Delta Brass Zeeland (NL).  Luc Vertommen worked with many famous soloists and composers, like Philip Sparke, Major Peter Parkes, Richard Evans, Robert en David Childs, James Watson, James Gourlay, Steven Mead, Don Lusher, Martin Winter, Ivan Meylemans, Simone Rebello, Jan Van der Roost, André Waignein, Johan Evenepoel, Stef Pillaert, Vivian Domenjoz, Richard Marshall, Jan Hadermann, Johan Verminnen, The Red Hackle Pipe Band, François Glorieux, Tom Brevik, Maurice André, Peter Roberts, David Daws, David Thornton, Pete Meechan and John Doyle.

As a cornet player Luc Vertommen was laureate at the National Soloist Contest of the then Flemish Brass Band Federation. He played with Brass Band Midden Brabant and Brass Band Willebroek.

Luc has written two books around the band music theme. He regularly arranges music for band, which is recorded on several CDs. At the moment, Luc is compiling a series of CDs and books on the history of Flemish band music, entitled 'Anthology of Flemish Band Music'.  Luc Vertommen has his own publishing company, Traxon Music/Band Press, with an extended catalogue containing more than 200 original works for band by Flemish composers. Luc Vertommen is a member of W.A.S.B.E, the musical commission of the Royal Music Federation of Flemish Brabant and of the brass band commission of the Flemish Amateur Music Organisation (Vlamo).

Links with Industry

Researchers within the Salford Music Research Centre have extensive industry connections and experience of collaborating with partners within the creative industries. These include ensembles such as Black Dyke, BBC Philharmonic, and Psappha and research centre staff has had their work performed in a range of international settings from the Royal Albert Hall to The White House. Other collaborations include partnerships with local national and international festivals, ranging from the Manchester International Festival to the Copenhagen Jazz Festival.  Industry links enhance the research activities of postgraduate students, to improve the quality and application of research, and to form lasting partnerships between students, academics and the external partners concerned.  The need for industrial and selection of suitable partners can be discussed directly with research programme leaders and supervisors.  Some students may wish to suggest potential new partners based on their existing professional collaborations and networks. 


Digital Performance Lab (MCUK)

This experimental performance space combines the technology of a TV Studio, the excitement of live theatre and visual immersive cinema – all in a double height space.

Its technical infrastructure is that of a black box theatre, hard-wired over a grid at floor and ceiling levels, controlled from a fully equipped flexible control room with verbal connection via a digital intercom system.

  • One of the largest HD Screens in Europe
  • A capacity of 150-theatre style
  • The extensive fibre optic and digital network infrastructure within the DPL will allow for multiple high speed HD video and audio connections throughout the space with access to multicast enabled video conferencing technology

The Digital Performance Lab can be used for computer gaming, animation, dance and accommodate specialist teaching, live performances and creative technology installations. It is particularly suited to research-led practice in creative media and new forms of digitally enhanced performance.