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A group dance performance on stage at the Conservatorium with orchestra

Artistic research lab

We discover as we do: creating new knowledge through embodied performance and composition

What does it mean to create music? How do we encounter and interpret new works? How do we strive to invent new sounds, and how do we wrestle with the past to bring fresh interpretations?

The Artistic Research Lab is made up of composers and performers who actively engage with these questions.  Our research is embodied: it emerges during the acts of performance, composition, improvisation and interpretation.  Our research is realised in live performance and recordings of all types. We cover the following genres and practices:

  • Historically informed performance (HIP) – interpreting and performing works through rigorous academic examination of texts, sources and early recordings connected to the composers through strands of pedagogical lineage
  • Jazz: creation and performance of world premiere new works, research of innovative experimental practice design, and the application of ecological frameworks of expertise, skill acquisition and creative discovery
  • Creative applications of emerging theory from 4E cognitive science (embedded, enactive, extended and embodied)
  • Contemporary music practice: Song-writing methods and practices, collaboration and creation, record production and the studio as a creative space, performance modes and styles, persona and identity, community music, and interactions with new technology
  • Social-inclusivity through music making; responses to place through songwriting, and making old songs live in a new world
  • Applying innovative and new pedagogical methods in performance and composition
  • Electronic and electro-acoustic composition
  • Composition for every format of performer for the modern concert hall and theatre
  • World premieres by Australia’s most celebrated and renowned living composers

Our Composing Women’s program is committed to fostering and empowering a new generation of women composers, and creations by this postgraduate cohort are performed by some of Australia’s leading performers and arts organisations.

Current funded projects

  • Funding source detail: Australia Council for the Arts (2019-2021)
  • Researcher: Liza Lim
  • Funding source detail: Australian Research Council Discovery Project (DP170101976), 2017-2021
  • Researchers: Neal Peres Da Costa, Clive Brown (MDW)
  • Funding source detail: Australian Research Council Discovery Project (DP210101511), 2021-2023
  • Researchers: Neal Peres Da Costa, Amanda Harris, Toby Martin, Jakelin Troy, Matthew Stevens (Sydney Living Museums)
  • Funding source detail: Create NSW, 2020-2021
  • Researchers: Liza Lim, Benjamin Carey
  • Funding source detail: Australia Council for the Arts (2019-2021)
  • Researcher: Damien Ricketson

Our Researchers