28-30 August 2019

Activate: Re-Sounding Research Festival hosted by the Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre (QCRC), delivers three-days of free live performances, interactive music-making sessions, workshops and discussions exploring the latest developments in music research.

All events are free and all are welcome!

Festival experiences include:

  • music-making sessions led by renowned guest artists, faculty, and research students
  • lively Pecha Kucha (storytelling) presentations - from exploring site-specific work through The Piano Mill, to building public sound sculptures and reimagining early Opera through a South Indian lens
  • concerts featuring new musical possibilities
  • workshops on the future of music research and pressing social issues relating to gender and diversity, climate justice and activism, and future technologies and artificial intelligence.

This is held as part of Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University's Project Week and located at the Conservatorium – South Bank campus.

Griffith University staff and student registration

External Registration

About the festival

Intercultural Concerts

Wednesday 28 August 1 pm-2 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer: An intercultural concert featuring Tabla player Dheeraj Shreshta, Dr. Louise Denson, movement exponent Haruna Tsuchiya from Thailand, and Jodie Rottle (HDR) with QCGU students.

Thursday 29 August 1pm-2 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer: An intercultural concert featuring didgeridoo and piano player David Williams, Graeme Jennings, and Hannah Reardon-Smith (HDR) with QCGU students.

Friday 30 August 1pm-2 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer: An intercultural concert featuring Masoud Kamgarpour and Greta Kelly from the Iranian Saba ensemble, with Dr. Stephen Newcomb and Dr. Charulatha Mani (Karnatik Voice)

Re-Sounding Research

Wednesday August 29 10.30 am-12 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15 - Music and Careers: A futuristic vision: Dr. Diana Tolmie presents an interactive lecture on current trends and possibilities in music careers and looks to a strategy for 2050.

Wednesday August 28 2 pm-3.30 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15The Ethics of Activism through Music

Presented by Associate Professor Donna Weston and Dr. Leah Coutts, the term eco-warrior emerged in the UK in the 1990s and describes people taking direct action against perceived environmental threats. The eco-warrior movement has manifested in, for example, the 2014 film “Rise of the Eco-Warriors” and websites such as “I am Eco-Warrior”. Popular music artists such as Sting, Sheryl Crow and Thom Yorke have been claimed by the movement as eco-warriors.   This lecture explores music artists who, through personal action, tactics, and/or expression could be classified as eco-warriors.

Thursday August 29 10.30 am-12 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15 - The Methodology Room

Are you keen to find out how to approach research from the perspective of being an artist? This is the session for you. Facilitated by Professor Stephen Emmerson and Dr. Charulatha Mani, this session aims to engage students in an active discussion on the various methods and procedures that they could adopt in answering their burning research questions. The methods shared in this session will help students use their music-making practices and/or those of others, and associated performance cultures, as a critical lens.

Thursday August 29 2 pm-3.30 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15 - Making music across cultures

Exploring the notion of culture as the node connection and difference in the context of music-making and music research, Dr. Catherine Grant and Professor Richard Moyle facilitate discussion and thinking in this interesting session. The session also features perspectives and some live music from the All Stars, the music group comprising recent refugee and migrant students from TAFE, Brisbane.

Friday August 30 10.30 am-12 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15 - Making as Artistic Research

Exploring the significance of electronic and digital tool building and instrument design as creative practice and research. This session shall be presented as a combination of demonstrations (lecture style with a mixture of show and tell and slides) and a panel discussion. The presenters include Professor Andrew Brown, Dr. John Ferguson, Matt Hitchcock, and Dr. Leah Barclay. Some of the questions that this session would explore include: What is the role of making in your creative practice and/or research? To what extent is making and things made an objective in itself, a vehicle for exploration, or part of a process? How does making manifest itself in creative and research outcomes? What are some examples of these outcomes?

Friday August 30 2 pm-3.30 pm, Rooms 2.14/2.15 - Love your leftovers: Songs, the Law and the Land

Professor Richard Moyle, Auckland, New Zealand shall lead this session. Richard notes, “Although in common use by the 1990s, the existence and performance of Indigenous songs and dances as supportive evidence in Australian Aboriginal land claims began in 1978 in a hearing for a relatively small parcel of land.  I discuss my own involvement in that and one other claim using predominantly musical material, and also in a subsequent much larger claim in which the adduced materials extended beyond the normal purview of ethnomusicology. Now, two generations on, new questions arise for the researcher:  How does the original host community view that earlier published research now? What kinds of data collected in the research period do they know about?  What do they want done with them? What about ongoing issues of safeguards, legal and cultural, for such material? And, more generally, what to do with our "research leftovers"?”

Pecha Kucha and Pizza

Two sessions of Pecha Kucha comprising 8 riveting 6’40” presentations will be the highlight of the afternoons of Wednesday 28 - Thursday 29 August 4 pm-5 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer.

The Pecha Kucha will consist of short narratives, media, and music-making from key projects of the various presenters.

The presenters for Wednesday include: Eve Newsome, Dr. Leah Coutts, Mat Klotz, Dr. Margaret Schindler, Dr. Diana Tolmie, Dr. Erik Griswold, Associate Professor Donna Weston, Matt Hitchcock

The presenters for Thursday include: Professor Brydie Bartleet, Dr. Leah Barclay, Stephen-Bernard Project, Dr. Charulatha Mani, Professor Vanessa Tomlinson, Karin Schaupp, Dr. Louise Denson, Dr. John Ferguson

Poster Presentations (Honours Cohort)

Thursday August 29 5 pm-6 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer. Facilitated by Dr. Leah Coutts, attendees will have an opportunity to witness the QCGU Honours students presenting posters of their current research projects.

Higher Degree Research New Music Ensemble

Thursday August 29 6 pm-7 pm, Queensland Conservatorium Foyer. Here there is much music being created, shared, and researched in HDR-land, and this session brings out certain latest experimentations, and collaborations from our brilliant cohort.

Intercultural Workshops (QCGU Staff and students only)

Wednesday 28 August 10.30 am-12 pm Basil Jones Orchestral Hall: Improvisation Workshop with Indian Tabla player Dheeraj Shreshta in collaboration with students, Dr. Louise Denson, visiting movement exponent from Thailand, Tsuchiya Haruna, and HDR Jodie Rottle. Dheeraj is a well-known Brisbane-based player of the Indian rhythm instrument, Tabla and is originally from Nepal.

Wednesday 28 August 2 pm - 3.30 pm Basil Jones Orchestral Hall: Indian rhythm workshop with Dheerja Shreshta. This is ideal for students who wish to know more about time and tempo from an intercultural perspective.

Thursday 29 August 10.30 am-12 pm Ian Hanger Recital Hall: Improvisation Workshop with didgeridoo and piano artist David Williams  with students, Graeme Jennings, and HDR Hannah Reardon-Smith. David is a descendent of the Wakka-Wakka people of central south-western Queensland who has an active musical practice in the intercultural space.

Friday 30 August 10.30 am-12 pm Basil Jones Orchestral Hall: Improvisation workshop with members from the Iranian Saba ensemble, Masoud Kamgarpour and Greta Kelly, with students, Dr. Steve Newcomb, and Karnatik singer-researcher Dr. Charulatha Mani. Masoud is a well-regarded Santour player who hails from the Shiraz region on Iran and Greta is a violinist and Shah Kaman player. The ensemble works with refugees and believes in social justice through music-making