UCL Urban Laboratory


Urban sound, performance and transnational identities - Call for Participants

27 February 2019

Following the Cities Imaginaries annual lecture on 16 May­­, UCL Urban Laboratory will host a half-day event to explore how different music and dance cultures shape diverse neighbourhoods and urban narratives in large cosmopolitan cities with a particular focus on London

Cities Imaginaries

We contend that performance forges ties between communities dispersed across historic transnational networks, and creates shared urban histories and heritage between cities. In so doing, and drawing on a Critical Heritage Studies approach, the event will re-examine the relationship between 'metropole' and 'periphery', highlighting some of the ways in which patterns of postcolonial migration and mobility have re-shaped the urban landscapes and identity of 'the centre' in the image of 'the edge', and embedded those counter-narratives at the heart of our urban culture.

Confirmed speakers during the day include Sonjah Stanley Niaah (University of the West Indies), Mykaell Riley (University of Westminster), Joy White (sociologist and ethnographer), Julian Henriques (Goldsmiths, University of London), and Richard Bramwell (Loughborough University).

Call for Participation: PhD roundtable

The PhD roundtable session on the afternoon of 17 May invites six current PhD candidates exploring cultures, geographies, practices, histories, and theories of music and the city to examine - through collaborative discussion - questions and provocations formed by their own abstract submissions, led by the chair. The purpose of this roundtable is to discuss multiple cases and comparative approaches to understanding the relationship that music has to the city as socio-cultural, economic, historical, and political object/agent in the context of the 6 participants' research.

Please send abstracts (up to 300 words) outlining your current research topics and interests to Peter Sach (ucfapha@ucl.ac.uk) by Wednesday 24th April. Submissions are welcome from all disciplines, and at all stages of PhD research. Financial assistance is available to help cover the costs of travel and accommodation for participants. Please state your requirements when submitting your abstract. 

Call for artists / performers

Following the day's roundtable and panel discussions, Cities Imaginaries will close with an evening of performance and discussion in the newly-refurbished, 550 seat capacity Bloomsbury Theatre. 

Organisers are accepting submissions from musicians to participate and perform; discussing their musical influences, inspirations, and approaches to creating and performing music in relation to this year's themes of transnational identities, mobility and migration. Artists will be chosen to perform some repertoire live, and to discuss the above between themselves and a panel chair. 

Please send a 250 word abstract which discusses your performance and production in relation to this year's theme, along with your technical requirements/rider, to Jordan Rowe (urbanlaboratory@ucl.ac.uk) by Sunday 17 March. If possible, please send links for any accompanying audio or video, or alternatively you can drop off files via UCL Dropbox to the email address listed above.

This is an open call, and PhD candidates who are already applying to the roundtable are encouraged to apply to this also, if their work involves performance and production of music. A performance fee is available to each chosen participant.

The day forms part of UCL Culture's Performance Lab, a season where artists, researchers and students explore how live performance can animate research - and how research can inspire art. The event is also part of Bartlett 100, a year-long celebration to mark 100 years since the naming of UCL's global faculty of the Built Environment.