Music, Medicine and Dance - exploring what it means to perform

Music, Medicine and Dance - exploring what it means to perform

Project Team

Professor Sarah Whatley 




Professor Roger Kneebone (Imperial College, London)

Duration of Project

18 month project, beginning end of May 2022

Project Overview

This AHRC-funded Network project is led by Prof Roger Kneebone (PI), Imperial College, London and Sarah Whatley (Co-I)  and brings together a network of practitioners, academics, and educators from music, dance, fine arts, medicine, and science to investigate the role of cross-disciplinary approaches to performance. It will explore what it means to perform in different fields and will map the "pathway to performance" across disciplines to increase our understanding of the journey from novice to expert performer. Identifying the challenges that practitioners across different disciplines encounter, and struggle to address in isolation, will allow us to develop novel solutions drawing on the diverse expertise of the network. Areas of initial investigation will include physicality and embodied knowledge, engaging audiences, managing performance anxiety, and developing a healthy professional identity as a performer.

Inspecting the practices of other disciplines brings into focus the unseen expertise behind our own. Recognising and supporting the development of these unseen skills has the potential to transform the perspective of practitioners, from learner to professional, and support their journey along the pathway to performance. The project will bring together academics and educators as well as non-academic expert practitioners. Members will exchange ideas in a series of six themed workshops. They will identify aspects within their own craft of greatest potential benefit to other disciplines. Drawing on this network, core-project members will develop and pilot cross-disciplinary educational interventions aimed at supporting students on their "pathway to performance". A mixed methods approach will investigate the value of this type of learning.

Outcomes from the research will be disseminated publicly and at an institutional level to enhance our understanding of cross-disciplinary education and promote the development of further cross-disciplinary initiatives.

 Queen’s Award for Enterprise Logo
University of the year shortlisted
QS Five Star Rating 2023