The Music Research Division

The mission of the Music Research Division is twofold: to contribute to a learning environment which empowers highly talented individuals to realise their full potential, and which stimulates their artistic and intellectual curiosity; and to further the interaction between music education, professional practice and research.

The Music Research Division stimulates and facilitates research by conservatory teachers and coordinates the supervision of research by master's students. It exchanges knowledge, and initiates new research, with other institutions, such as the Musicology programme at the University of Amsterdam, the Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences at VU University Amsterdam, the Faculty of Sports and Nutrition at Hogeschool van Amsterdam, the Institute for Cultural Studies at Utrecht University, and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.

The research division works from the conviction that:

  • Music practice benefits from a regular exchange of new ideas
  • Musical craftsmanship deserves a more substantial representation in education, in cultural debates, in literature and media.
  • Practicing musicians should be able to act persuasively – in playing, but also in speaking or writing – as representatives of their discipline.
  • Practicing musicians can have an enriching influence on the academic discourse.

Head of Research

Michiel Schuijer studied music theory at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague and musicology at Utrecht University, where he obtained his PhD (cum laude) in 2005. He co-founded the Dutch (now Dutch/Flemish) Society for Music Theory, and was editor-in-chief of the Dutch Journal of Music Theory.
Schuijer focuses his own research at the juncture of music theory and historical musicology. In his book Analyzing Atonal Music: Pitch-Class Set Theory and Its Contexts​​​​​​​ he has traced the development in the United States of a body of theory explaining the music of classical modernists (Schoenberg, Stravinsky, Debussy, a.o.) from a mathematical perspective. This book earned him the Emerging Scholar Award of the American Society for Music Theory in 2010.
Michiel Schuijer is also study leader of Composition and Music Theory at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam.