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Centre for Music and Science

The Centre for Music and Science (CMS) provides a home for research linking the field of music with psychology, acoustics, computer science, and neuroscience. It is inherently multidisciplinary, though perhaps the chief specialism of the centre is music cognition. Through dedicated studio facilities, the CMS supports technology-based teaching and graduate and staff research that requires technological resources. The centre is a base for collaborative research with other departments in Cambridge and with those in outside institutions.

The Faculty of Music added the CMS as a purpose built wing in 2003 with the assistance of an award of £1.3 million from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and of funds from the University and Colleges. The site comprises a fully sound-isolated Recording Studio (consisting of a Control Room and Recording Room, both linked to the Concert Hall and Recital Room), a Computer Room and a Research Room.

The CMS was led from its inception in 2003 by Ian Cross, now Emeritus Professor of Music and Science. In 2011 Ian was joined in the CMS by Sarah Hawkins, now Emeritus Professor of Speech and Music Science. Ian and Sarah supervised a great number of students and research fellows during their time, many of whom can now be found in research and teaching institutions all over the world. Ian retired in September 2021, and now the CMS is now directed by Peter Harrison, an alumnus of Cambridge with particular expertise in computational music cognition.

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Latest news

Xiaoyue Zhou to start funded PhD at University College London

13 May 2024

We are very happy to hear that Xiaoyue Zhou, summer project student at the CMS (2023), has been awarded a PhD studentship at University College London. Xiaoyue will be working with Prof. Maria Chait and Prof. Neil Burgess. Congratulations Xiaoyue!

Claire Brillon to start funded PhD at McGill University

8 April 2024

We are proud to share that Claire Brillon, recent CMS MPhil student (2022-23), will be starting a funded PhD later this year at McGill University. Claire hopes to study the emotions of timbre, and will be perfectly located to do so with Stephen McAdams and Marcelo Wanderley. Congratulations Claire!