Talk at University of Toronto Music and Health Research Colloquium Series




Dr. Schutz will be speaking on the colloquium series at the University of Toronto (Faculty of Music). This colloquium series is run by Dr. Michael Thaut as part of the new graduate program in Music and Health Studies.  

The talk will discuss a range of the lab’s percussion-focused research, touching on practical applications for performing musicians, implications for psychological theory, connections with clinical treatments, and future studies applying our basic research to improving auditory alarms in medical devices.

Where:  Edward Johnson Music Building, room 217

When:  Thur, Oct 19th (3.15-4.45pm)

Who: The talk is free and open to the public

Seeing Music: Translating research on music perception to clinical contexts

Why do we buy concert tickets when the same sounds can be heard more cheaply and comfortably within our own homes? Why do popular music concerts include elaborate lighting and staging effects for what is ostensibly an auditory event? Why can’t orchestral musicians wear t-shirts and flip-flops? Clearly, visual information can play a significant role in the experience of music, but how and why does this happen? My talk will explore this issue through the context of a musical illusion in which musicians use visible gestures to change the way music “sounds.” Some expert performers capitalize on the fact that although these gestures have no acoustic consequences, they are crucial in shaping the way in which audiences perceive performances. This illusion raises interesting philosophical questions about what music “is” and how it is best experienced. It has also led to a surprising range of recent discoveries raising new questions about issues ranging from refining our understanding of sensory integration dysfunction in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to improving the design of auditory alarms in medical devices – an industry valuated by Industry Canada at $6 billion annually.