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Music Research Group

The Music Research Group is a Level I group of music researchers based at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA).

The artistic application and interrogation of sound in its multiple manifestations across time are principal concerns of this group of researchers who embrace practice led and more traditional written research. Investigators probe instrumental techniques, notational media, interpretive concepts, historic contexts and sonic interference to examine the intangibles of auditory sensations in which we are enveloped. The group holds a biennale conference in conjunction with industry partner, Tura New Music, that produces the refereed proceedings, ‘soundscripts’, published by the Australian Music Centre.


Decibel is a new music ensemble made up of staff from the Composition and Music Technology stream at WAAPA, and is one of the major foci for research activity for the group. Decibel is devoted to the realisation of music where acoustic and electronic instruments are represented. In each Decibel performance, electronic instruments are performed as unique ensemble members with their own sound quality and presence in the acoustic space. Decibel pioneer electronic score formats for new and existing works, incorporating mobile score formats and networked playback environments. Decibel encourage the creation of new works for electro acoustic performance, the arrangement of electronic works for live performance, the performance of seminal international works and the representation of Australian and local artists, established and emerging. They seek to dissolve any division between sound art, installation and music.

Partnership with Tura New Music

An important element of the Music research group’s activities is its relationship to this Government funded new music advocacy body. This partnership includes research projects such as:

  • the development of the Western Australian New Music Archive (WANMA);
  • co-convening of the Totally Huge New Music Festival conference, and assistance with the publication of the proceedings, ‘Sound Scripts’;
  • visiting artist programs; and
  • placements for postgraduate students.

Our staff

Current projects

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