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Academic Insights for the Thinking World

The 21st Century Music Curriculum- Why Guitar?

In her keynote speech at Vision 2020: The Housewright Symposium on the Future of Music Education held at Florida State University in 1999, composer Libby Larson shared the story of her daughter’s experience playing saxophone in middle school band.

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An insight into choral singing in the UK [infographic]

Some say it is the effect of Gareth Malone’s TV programme The Choir, others claim that it is a result of research pointing to the many health benefits to singing in a choir; whatever the cause, it is undeniable that choral singing in the UK has seen something of a renaissance in recent years. Explore this infographic to find out more about the state of choral singing in the UK.

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Reflections on music’s life lessons

I find myself reflecting upon my own experiences in music as a student, a piano teacher, a performer, a psychologist and a psychoanalyst. How did I get from “then” to “now”? Who assisted me along my winding journey? Do you ever wonder these things about yourself?

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Five things you didn’t know about “Over the Rainbow”

“Over the Rainbow,” with music by Harold Arlen and E. Y. “Yip” Harburg, is one of the most beloved songs of all time, especially as sung by Judy Garland in her role as Dorothy Gale in the 1939 MGM film The Wizard of Oz.  The song itself is familiar all over the world. But some things […]

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Involving kids in music: a lifelong gift

“My status as a musician hasn’t been a large part of my public identity since the beginning of high school. I took lessons and practiced at home, and that was it. But even that yielded other, more private lessons that my flute seemed to teach me. Those lessons will stay with me for much longer,”

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Singing resistance on the border

At an early age, Américo Paredes was preoccupied with the inexorable passing of time, which would leave an imprint in his academic career. Devoting his academic career to preserving and displaying Mexican-American traditions through thorough analysis and recording of folk-songs, it is clear that Paredes kept his focus on beating back the forces of time and amnesia. Indeed, Paredes’ lessons are still very much relevant today.

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Should bluegrass go to college? yes

On July 5, 2017, Ted Lehmann’s weekly bluegrass column in No Depression asked this provocative question: Bluegrass goes to college, but should it? Through deft turn of phrase, Lehmann hints that the answer may be no, and that perhaps both the music’s historical integrity and today’s aspiring performers might not be best served via the college route.

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A Q&A with composer Malcolm Archer

Malcolm Archer’s career as a church musician has taken him to posts at Norwich, Bristol, Wells Cathedrals, and St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. As a composer, Malcolm has published many works; his pieces are widely performed, recorded and broadcast and are greatly enjoyed for their approachable nature and singability. We spoke with Malcolm about his writing, his inspiration, and his career ambitions besides being a composer.

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Strategy challenged, part 2

An overlooked aspect of the conductor’s rehearsal procedure is the precise planning of any given rehearsal and of the rehearsal trajectory, from first reading to final dress, toward the end of “peaking” at the concert.

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10 facts about the bassoon

Rising to popularity in the 15th century, the bassoon is a large woodwind instrument that belongs to the oboe family and looks similar to the oboe in terms of coloring and use of the double reed. The bassoon enabled expansion of the range of woodwind instruments into lower registers.

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Fifth Rhythm Changes Conference 2017

On Thursday, 31 August, the Fifth Rhythm Changes Conference, themed “Re/Sounding Jazz” will kick off at the Conservatory of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Rhythm Changes conferences are the largest jazz research conferences in the field, bringing together some 150 researchers from all over the globe. This year’s edition is produced in collaboration with the Conservatory of Amsterdam, the University of Amsterdam.

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Mahler our contemporary

With various commemorations of the birthday of Gustav Mahler (1860–1911) in July, the attention to this composer reinforces his continuing significance for modern audiences. Literary scholars have made cases for the ways in which Shakespeare’s works retain their relevance for modern audiences in such different works as Jan Kott’s Shakespeare Our Contemporary (1960) and Marjorie Garber’s Shakespeare and Modern Culture (2009).

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Sandy Denny and Schubert

I have written elsewhere about how music, in a way that spoken language rarely does, can affect arousal, stimulate our emotions and memories, and move our bodies. It can even subtly alter our physiological state, both internally by altering heart rate, levels of hormones and so on, and externally – resulting in goose bumps, chills, tears, etc. This is the universal power of music

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10 facts about the waterphone

Unless you’re a pioneer for strange methods of sound production or the film director for a horror film, the chances are that you’ve never heard of OUP’s instrument of the month for August; however, that doesn’t mean that you haven’t heard it being played, and in fact, you probably have without realising!

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