Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

The annual Oxford May Music Festival combines the very cutting edge of science alongside world class concerts and took place from May 2 - 6 2019.

Our ability to hear provides us with a rich source of information about the world around us and, through language and music, plays an important role in human communication.

Professor Andrew King delivered a talk entitled "Brain plasticity: from Music to Hearing Loss" at the the city of Oxford's annual festival of Music, Science and Arts, Oxford May Music. Running for the last eight years, the festival is a collaborative celebration of culture and human achievement featuring innovative interdisciplinary events and attracts visitors from across the globe.

Oxford May Music is a long-standing event that combines cutting edge science talks on topics of general interest with world class concerts. When I was asked to give one of the talks in this year's festival, I thought it was appropriate to talk about the effects of auditory experience, including musical training, on the brain. The audience was very engaged with many people staying to ask questions at the end. - Professor Andrew King

Professor King described to an engaged audience how sound is detected by the ear and converted into a form that the brain can understand, enabling us to recognise a person's voice or a piece of music. His talk explained the mechanisms behind one of the most important properties of the brain, its capacity to change the way in which sensory signals are processed over multiple timescales, and how these ultimately provide the basis for learning language and musical training, even offering the potential to recover function after hearing loss.

 

The festival took place from May 2 to May 6 2019 at the St John the Evangelist Church on Iffley Road, a regular and popular venue for music and the arts.

More information on the festival, including the full 2019 programme, can be found here.

 

Similar stories

Researcher publishes children's book of the brain

Public Engagement

Betina Ip, a Royal Society Dorothy Hodgkin Research Fellow, has written a book for children: The Usborne Book of the Brain

International Women’s Day Wikipedia Editathon 2020

International Public Engagement

To celebrate International Women’s Day this year a number of groups hosted Wikipedia Editathons

Teenage Brain Workshop

Events Public Engagement

A new workshop aimed at young people to inspire them to learn more about the science of the brain has been designed as part of a large Wellcome Trust funded research programme.

SHElock Holmes - Inspiring Girls With Science

Public Engagement

On 27 July, 16 girls aged between 11-14 joined the SHElock team from the Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging.

Robin Dunbar and his Life Scientific

Awards and Honours Public Engagement

Prof Robin Dunbar, Emeritus Professor of Evolutionary Psychology has been in conversation with Jim Al-Khalili on Radio 4's Life Scientific. This fascinating podcast gives takes us on a journey from his early beginnings in science, and his fascinating research and groundbreaking discoveries he's made deciphering the mysteries as to why humans and animals evolve the social habits to exist in friendship circles.