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Research conferences and symposia

Many of the international conferences and symposia we host in the Music department at Manchester are linked closely to our researchers' own projects, or form part of their large-scale funded projects.

As part of our practice-based research, we hold large biannual festivals of music and sound using new technology and media, hosted by Manchester Theatre in Sound (MANTIS).

We are also regular co-hosts of the biennial New Music Northwest annual festival of contemporary composition, held in conjunction with the Royal Northern College of Music. This provides an important platform for the performance of new works by our composition staff and research students.

Conference and symposia highlights

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music.

This festival included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students, and featured guest artist violinist Darragh Morgan. 

A major international conference celebrating the beginning of Weinberg's centenary year. It brought together scholars and practitioners from Russia, Belarus, Poland, Sweden, Germany, France, Australia, the UK and the US, and featured Gidon Kremer as Guest of Honour.

The Quatuor Danel gave seven concerts as part of the symposium, with a further two concerts also incorporated into the event. The conference was co-sponsored by the British Academy and the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, Warsaw.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music.

This festival included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students, and featured guest artists the BEER Ensemble (University of Birmingham), Seed Studios Trafford, Brona Martin and Danny Saul.

A week of concerts and events exploring digital creativity as part of the European Art ­– Science –Technology Network for Digital Creativity funded by the Culture Program of the European Union.

A two-day festival and sonification symposium with keynote speaker/s, presentations on current artistic data sonification research, fixed media concerts, sound installations and live performances.

This festival explored the methodologies and results emerging at the intersection of science and music.

The 2017 NMNW festival comprised six days of concerts co-organised with the RNCM, and hosted in the Martin Harris Centre and around Manchester. It featured the music of invited composer Mark Anthony Turnage alongside Manchester composers, performed by Manchester ensembles.

The festival included concerts by MANTIS, Trio Atem, Psappha, the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Ebonit Saxophone Quartet and student ensembles from the University and the RNCM.

It included pieces by University composers David Berezan, Philip Grange, Kevin Malone, Camden Reeves, Richard Whalley and Nina Whiteman, as well as the some of the University's most promising student composers.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music.

This festival featured the music of guest artist Jonty Harrison, and included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students.

A study day designed to bring together composers, musicologists and performers with a shared interest in exploring the concept of space in music. It was hosted alongside the MANTIS festival.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music, including works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students.

This festival featured guest artists bass clarinettist Marij van Gorkom, Robert Mackay and Manuella Blackburn.

This was the second three-day celebration of the recent resurgence of analogue and modular synthesisers. It featured some of the most renowned UK and international performers, composers, lecturers and designers working with analogue and modular systems.

It mixed live and fixed-media concerts featuring the MANTIS system with conference papers and keynotes, plus theoretical 'Patchbay' sessions (combining formal papers with performances), and workshops.

A one-day symposium co-hosted by the Universities of Huddersfield and Manchester, held at Heritage Quay, Huddersfield. The event focused on the music of Michael Finnissy, as viewed through the lens of performance and collaboration.

In addition to presentations from six invited speakers, it included a lunchtime recital and a display of concert programmes from the British Music Collection.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music, including works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students. This festival featured guest artists Junya Oikawa and Nikos Stavropoulos.

RMA 2nd Practice as Research Symposium, 8 September 2016

This was the second of two events focusing on the challenges of documenting and explaining composition and other forms of practice-based research within the framework of research in UK higher education. 

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music, including works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students.

This festival featured guest artists Terri Hron (recorder), Monty Adkins, Mark Pilkington, Manoli Moriaty and Manuella Blackburn.

This was an eight-day multi-event festival co-hosted with the RNCM. The 2016 festival featured invited composer Harrison Birtwistle alongside Manchester composers.

Concerts were performed by Manchester ensembles including the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, Psappha, MANTIS, Trio Atem, the Vonnegut Collective, Distractfold, and student ensembles from the University, the RNCM and Chetham's School of Music.

It included the world premiere of Kevin Malone's opera Mysterious 44. There were also compositions by university composers Philip Grange, Gavin Osborn, Camden Reeves and Nina Whiteman, together with some of the University's most promising student composers.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music.

This festival included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students, and featured guest artists Kees Tazelaar and Metanast.

This event aimed to bring together composers and practice-based researchers to discuss the issues facing those working in these areas in higher education in the modern context of research funding and research assessment.

A two-day event with multiple concerts celebrating the latest creative research in electroacoustic music.

This festival included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students, and featured guest artists Darren Copeland, NAISA, Metanast and Steve Symons of the Owl Project.

This study day brought together researchers to engage in interdisciplinary discussions about the relationship between music, circulation, and the public sphere.

It was a jointly hosted forum and included contributions by invited speakers Byron Dueck (Open University) and Estelle Joubert (Dalhousie University and University of Oxford).

MANTIS performances at Media City UK, Salford, were held as part of the Sonic Fusion festival, featuring works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students.

A two-day event celebrating the tenth anniversary of MANTIS, with multiple concerts.

It included works for fixed and mixed media by Manchester staff and postgraduate students, and featured guest artists Francis Dhomont, Trevor Wishart and alumni of the NOVARS research centre.