Context Studies in Music and Critical Performance

In Context Studies in Music and Critical Performance we are interested in the big issues. Why does music matter? How do understandings of music differ across time, place and culture? How can we help facilitate the sustainability of diverse musical knowledge and practice across the planet for future generations?

Teaching Program

Units in Context Studies in Music and Critical Performance equip students to understand the importance of music and music-related practices in various societies and cultures, and to recognise the many factors that shape the creation, performance and meaning of musical works.

Studying this course adds value to our contemporary understanding of music and provides depth to our knowledge about music as a creative practice. Furthermore, units in this program enable students to develop lifelong, transferable skills, including clear and critical thinking, analytical problem solving, research techniques, and writing and communication skills.


Undergraduate studies

Our teaching approach creates pathways for students to progress from an undergraduate interest to Honours, and then graduate research.

Graduate Research

The Theatre, Performance and Music Graduate Research is part of the Arts Graduate Research Program.


Context Studies in Music and Critical Performance staff undertake research on the following topics:

  • Music of Asia
  • Decolonising narratives of improvisation, creativity and performance
  • Intercultural music
  • Music and dance
  • Nineteenth century music and cultures
  • Music and political economy
  • Music of Australia

Monash is home to the Music Archive of Monash University (MAMU). MAMU is a physical and digital collection of musical instruments, scores, field recordings, puppets and diverse other musical, dance and theatrical materials acquired since the foundation of the University’s Department of Music in 1965.

The following research groups work with the Context Studies in Music and Critical Performance stream in the School of Music:


Our academics enjoy strong national and international profiles and pursue global interests. View all staff.