McMaster Arts Research Board (ARB) funds projects on multi-limb movement and rhythm perception

This competitive internal grant will boost ongoing software development efforts in the lab.  Our sensorimotor integration research uses customized software to simultaneously record integrated information on the perception and production of rhythmic information.  We are working to ensure the integrity of timing information in this package as a step towards exploring multi-limb movements.  This award for $5,950 will help towards development of this novel tool, which could also be of use to other teams exploring the popular issue of sensormitor interactions in rhythm perception.  For more information please visit our ARB funding page listing each of the lab’s awards from this agency.  ROADS 

New insights on experts’ rhythm perception to be presented at PASIC in 2015

San Antonio, Texas

pasic15logoThrough a partnership with the Scholarly Research Committee, we ran testing stations at PASIC (Percussive Arts Society International Convention) in 2013 and 2014 as part of a large-scale project exploring the effects of musical training on music perception.  Across these years, lab members tested  over 150 percussionists, and engaged in an outreach effort to explain the relevance of lab projects for performing musicians, educators, composers, and scholars alike.

We presented some of the preliminary results of these tests at PASIC 2015 to share our insights with the PAS community – many of whom ran in our previous experiments.  Through this process we have gained a better understanding of the complex relationship between movement, training, and perception, and we were pleased to share these insights with a musical community well positioned to make practical use of them.  The talk took place at 2pm on Thur, Nov 11th in room 217.  Click here to read the Percussive Notes “preview article”.

New insights into the music of Bach and Chopin published in Frontiers in Psychology (Cognition)

Matt PoonGFrontiersreat minds ranging from Plato to Darwin have posited that music’s power to convey emotion stems in part from its parallels to emotional speech.  Matt Poon (lab alum ’12) explored this intriguing issue by working with Dr. Schutz to quantify the use of cues such as pitch height and attack rate in “balanced” corpus of major/minor key pieces – Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier and Chopin’s Preludes for piano. This article now appears in a special edition of Frontiers in Psychology.

See the full article online and/or a new  tool visualizing tempo choices for Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier.

Dr. Schutz discusses statistical analysis approaches at the Society for Music Theory Meeting

St. Louis, Missouri

Dr. Schutz spoke on a panel at the Empirical Research for Music Theorists workshop, part of the 2015 Society for Music Theory meeting. This included presentations/facilitations by Dr. Leigh Van Handel (Michigan State University), Dr. Daniel Shanahan (Lousiana State University) and Dr. Joshua Albrecht (University of Mary Hardin-Baylor).  Aimed to promote new interdisciplinary research approaches, this event was part of our ongoing effort to demonstrate the value of music cognition for enhancing traditional approaches to music research and pedagogy.  The workshop was held in St. Louis, Missouri Oct 29th-Nov 1st.


Click for more info!

Dr. Leigh VanHandel, Michigan State University

Dr. Leigh VanHandel

Dr. Dan Shanahan Lousiana State University

Dr. Dan Shanahan

Dr. Josh Albrecht University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

Dr. Josh Albrecht

Talks for Graduate student colloquium series (Faculty of Music) and Brain Mind Institute at Western University

London, Ontario

WesternDr. Schutz gave two talks at Western University – the first was as the inaugural speaker on the 2015-16 Graduate Colloquium series titled Moving to Hear: How Musical Training and Movement Affect Our Perception of Rhythm.  This survey reviewed a series of recent experiments exploring the complex relationship between musical training, types of body movement (finger vs. stick), and rhythm perception.  Click here for an overview of this project.

A second talk for the Brain Mind Institute focused on the surprising role of amplitude envelope in auditory perception.  This covered a series of lab experiments on the important role of this under-studied property including audio-visual integration, duration perception, and multi-modal associations.  Additionally, it contained a summary of the lab’s ongoing “survey of sounds” project exploring the types of sounds used in auditory research.  For more information about amplitude envelope, see here.

New Members of the MAPLE Lab! Anna Siminoski, Kimberly Germann, and Annilee Baron

Anna SiminoskiAnna is beginning her M.Sc. degree in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience, & Behaviour. She is coming to us from the University of British Columbia where she completed a Bachelors degree with a double major in psychology and music performance. Kimberly-GermannKimberly is a fourth year student in the Honours B.Sc. Psychology, Neuroscience, and Behaviour program. She is completing her thesis on amplitude envelope discrimination, and also serves as the lab’s “Wiki Master”. AnnileeAnnilee is an Honours B.Sc. Psychology, Neuroscience, and Behaviour student exploring the communication of emotion in music.  She is also our “Public Relations Specialist” assisting with outreach and publicity.


Lorraine Chuen successfully defends her M.Sc. Thesis on the unity assumption

lorrainechuen portraitGraduate student Lorraine Chuen successfully defended her M.Sc. thesis, titled “Evaluating the influence of audiovisual unity in temporal binding of musical stimuli” and will now graduate with her Masters degree. She will soon be moving to Toronto to work at the MaRS Discovery District as a Studio [Y] Fellow.

This prestigious eight month program is in its third year of training tomorrow’s entrepreneurs, offering a broad overview of topics and training to a select cohort of 25 young professionals.

Society for Music Perception and Cognition Biennial Meeting showcases several new projects

Nashville, Tennesee

Aimee Battcock gave a talk about the communication of emotion in performances of JS Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier.

Lorraine Chuen previewed her M.Sc. thesis exploring the effects of audiovisual congruency on perceived synchrony of musical events.

Fiona Manning’s latest findings on the role of different effectors (finger vs. stick) in a sensorimotor integration task were presented as a talk.

Dr. Schutz debuted pilot results from a new study exploring dual-tapper synchronization Steve Reich’s Drumming, initiated by acclaimed percussionist Russell Hartenberger (NEXUS/University of Toronto)

SMPC-banner-large1 2015Aimee BattcockFiona Portraitlorrainechuen portrait


Dr. Schutz is awarded tenure and promotion to Associate Professor; granted research leave for 2015-16

Schutz-MIMM-headshot-LQAfter six years of serving as Assistant Professor and establishing the MAPLE Lab, Dr. Schutz has received tenure and promotion to Associate Professor.  Under his supervision, the lab has grown significantly since it’s establishment in 2009 and houses four graduate students as well as several thesis and a dozen undergraduate student researchers annually.  During his research leave he will be a Visiting Professor at Ryerson University in Toronto, where he will be working on collaborations with Dr. Frank Russo.

He looks forward to continuing to mentor the next generation of music perception and cognition scholars as they make new discoveries helping to shed light on core issues of importance to musicians, psychologists, and neuroscientists alike.  He would like to thank the many students, colleagues, and staff members who have been instrumental in growing the MAPLE lab over the past several years!

Digitizing Bach presentation at the International Musicological Society (IMS) 2015 conference

OG-iaml-imsDr. Schutz discussed a new project archiving different interpretations of Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier at the IMS conference, co-hosted by the International Association of Music Libraries (IAML) society. This presentation included a debut of a new tool for interacting with a database of information related to different editions and interpretations of Bach’s Well Tempered Clavier (Book 1) as part of an ongoing project on music and emotion.  The conference took place at the Julliard School in NYC, from June 21-26, 2015.

Quirks Question Roadshow features Dr. Schutz discussing why major scales sound “right”

Perimeter Institute (Waterloo, Ontario)

CBC’s Bob McDonald talks with researchers to answer questions from the show’s listeners.  The taping took place at the Perimeter Institute in Waterloo, Ontario on June 4th, and air on  June 6th.

Popular with audiences since 1975, Quirks & Quarks is an award-winning Canadian weekly news program, attracting over 500,000 listeners for its Saturday broadcasts.  For more information visit the Quirks Question Roadshow page.

Listen to the full episode here.

Dominique and Aimee received funding to support their research projects

Hamilton, Ontario

Dominique Beauregard Cazabon was awarded a $15,000 Master’s scholarship by the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Nature et technologies.  Aimee Battcock successfully secured support from the NunatuKavut Skills and Development Bursary ($6000) to support her research on the perception of emotion in music.  Fiona Manning will be entering her second year of funding through SSHRC Bombardier CGS (Canadian Graduate Scholarship) program.

FRQNTDominiqueNunatukavutAimee Battcock

Dr. Schutz lectures at David Huron’s Empirical Methods Research workshop

Columbus, Ohio

Ohio State University OSUDavid HuronDr. Schutz was an invited speaker at David Huron’s five-day workshop for music scholars: Methods in Empirical Music research. This workshop aimed to develop practical research skills for musicians and music scholars interested in beginning empirical research on music.  Dr. Schutz discussed the lab’s research on gestures used by percussionists, highlighting how this shaped his thinking on the importance of music cognition for performing musicians.

David Huron is a Distinguished Professor of Music at the Ohio State University. He has delivered over 300 lectures in 25 countries and published over 130 scholarly papers. He has also been active in training musicians on how to use empirical methods to explore important musical question.


Dominique presents preliminary research at Acoustical Society of America meeting

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvannia

ASA-Logo-Name-283x300DominiqueDominique Beauregard Cazabon presented a poster at the Acoustical Society of America’s spring meeting.  The poster was entitled “The effect of amplitude envelope on spatial ventriloquism” and presented results from a pilot study aiming to determine whether amplitude envelope affects the way we integrate audiovisual information in the spatial dimension.  This is the first step in a series of experiments aimed at exploring the role of temporal structure in the spatial localization of sounds.

MAPLE Lab alumni move forward with their next career steps!

Congratulations to Peter Bamikole, Emily Gula, Diana Martinez and Jen Harris for acceptance into their future programs!

  • Peter Bamikole will be heading to Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee to complete his Medical Degree.
  • Emily Gula will be attending the University of Ottawa this fall to complete a Master’s in Audiology.
  • Diana Martinez will be studying law at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, California.
  • Jen Harris will be enrolling in the Master of Clinical Science (MClSc) program program at Western, where she will be joining fellow lab alumni Jonny Vaisberg (’13) and Janet Kim (’11).

Peter BamikoleEmily GulaDiana MartinezJen Harris

“Movement Enhances Perceived Timing” paper published in Timing & Time Perception

TTP Timing and PerceptionFiona Manning published “Movement Enhances Perceived Timing in the Absence of Auditory Feedback” in Timing & Time Perception. This paper identifies the importance of auditory feedback as a cue for movement timing, which subsequently affects perceived timing of an external stimulus.  Additionally, it demonstrated that movement alone can improve timing perception, independent of the auditory feedback caused by this movement.  Click here to see a quick overview of this project.   Fiona_Manning


Fiona gives invited seminar talk at Waterloo’s Department of Kinesiology

Waterloo, Ontario

Kinesiology WaterlooFiona Manning presented a talk at the University of Waterloo Department of Kinesiology seminar series in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences. This talk overviewed sensorimotor integration in rhythm perception, outlining Fiona’s work on enhanced perceptual benefits that are associated with synchronizing movement with external auditory stimuli.

MAPLE Lab at the LOVE Conference 2015

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Several members of the MAPLE Lab attended the Lake Ontario Visionary Establishment (LOVE) Conference in Niagara Falls, ON.

  • LOVE conferenceMotor effector’s tapping rate influences movement’s effect on timing perception (Tardif, Manning & Schutz)
  • Exploring timing coordination between percussionists in Steve Reich’s iconic Drumming (Schutz & Hartenberger)
  • Cueing Emotion:  comparing perceived emotion to piano work interpretations (Battcock & Schutz)


Flute and percussion recital in Convocation Hall with flautist David Gerry as part of Lunchtime Recital series

David Gerrymarimba-clipart-16268237flute-clip-art-clipart-fluteDr. Schutz and David Gerry performed in the School of the Arts Lunchtime Recital Series at Convocation Hall.  The program featured a variety of works for flute and percussion, including Homage to Keith Jarrett and Gary Burton (Barbar Kolb), First Flight (Michael Colquhoun), and Adriadne for Flute and Percussion (Lou Harrison). In addition to the duos, Gerry performed two solos:  Wake Up! For piccolo and alarm clock (Dehnhard) and Valentine Piece (Gorecki).  Schutz also performed two solos including Trilogy: Three movements for solo vibraphone (Huesgen), and Blues for Gilbert (Glentworth).