Karin Greenhead

Transformation, personal knowledge and agency through dialogues in movement and music

In developing his teaching method the creator of Dalcroze Eurhythmics, Émile Jaques-Dalcroze, did not rely on theory; instead he experimented with music and movement to address the problems he identified in his students’ understanding and performance of music. These problems encompassed a range of difficulties including rhythmic instability, poor pitch perception, mechanical playing lacking in expression and creativity and an absence of joy in music-making. Movement, music and improvisation run through all branches Dalcroze Eurhythmics (DE) and the fruits of learning are applied in original, artistic and interpretative work of various kinds, in therapeutic situations and in teaching.
Dalcroze practice today includes traditional techniques and approaches and those developed subsequently based on the principles of the method. The range of settings in which it is practised or applied has increased as has the interest in DE itself stimulated also by support for its processes from teaching and learning theory and neuroscience.
Research publications and other literature show that students of DE report having transformational and joyful experiences during lessons. These, often life-changing, experiences may occur suddenly or develop over time. Dalcroze teachers require a particular kind of knowledge of music-movement relationships and their actual and potential connections. To apply this knowledge they need skill in using traditional techniques, developing effective new ones and adjusting their lesson spontaneously in response to the class to create the music-movement dialogues through which the students learn.
This presentation looks at the processes used in rhythmics lessons and the diverse roles that movement and improvisation play in teaching and learning all aspects of music and musical performance: technical and theoretical, creative and interpretative, social and communicative. To gain some practical experience of the kinds of processes used, audience members will be invited to remove their shoes to participate in a range of simple, movement exercises.


Karin Greenhead is a teacher of Dalcroze Eurhythmics (DE) and Dynamic Rehearsal (DR) for the Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester and Director of Studies for Dalcroze UK responsible for the professional training and examination of Dalcroze teachers.

Her work is informed by her experience as a performer and her work with dancers. She teaches widely nationally and internationally across North America, Europe, East and South-east Asia and Australia. DR is her application of Dalcroze principles to the rehearsal and performance of repertoire and the subject of her doctoral thesis (2019). She serves as secretary to the Collège of the Institut Jaques-Dalcroze (IJD), Geneva whose Diplôme Supérieur she holds.

Karin’s work extends to peer-review, editing and the supervision of masters and doctoral students. Her publications include instructional literature, research articles and book chapters including Mindful bodies: The Gift of Dalcroze Eurhythmics to the Artist-Musician (2021); The Best Fit: Methodology, Methods, Processes and Outcomes – a Teacher Investigates her own Practice (2021); Dalcroze Eurhythmics: Bridging the Gap between the Academic and Practical through Creative Teaching and Learning (Greenhead, Habron, & Mathieu, 2016) and The Touch of Sound: Dalcroze Eurhythmics as a Somatic Practice (Greenhead & Habron, 2015) .

She co-founded the Dalcroze Eurhythmics International Examination Board (DEIEB) in 2010 and in 2013 the International Conference of Dalcroze Studies (ICDS) where she serves as a member of the scientific committee. She was the practical Keynote presenter for ICDS3 (2017)

For more information: (research staff)


Magne I. Espeland

Creative music education as a sustainable craft

In a recent book chapter (Espeland. M. 2021) I argued that we need to reframe the rationale for what might be called ‘music education as craft’. I found it meaningful to compare the international music education society and its flock, a field that has a long history of practices, pioneers, ideas, and hard-working members in a great variety of cultures and contexts, to that of a sustainable ‘craft’ with its strengths and weaknesses. I based my arguments on a discussion about what I called a ‘common topos of significance’ when considering music education as craft and named four areas as being of specific importance. One of the ‘significances’ I referred to was ‘the significance of the creative and the improvisational in teaching as well as in learning processes’.
I this talk I will elaborate on my arguments and discuss to what extent creativity in a wide sense could or should be an overarching approach to all aspects of music education to be sustainable, for example when considering the other three ‘significances’ I discussed in the above-mentioned book chapter. In my keynote, therefore, within the framework of music education, I will discuss and reflect on the relationship between creativity and tradition, between creativity and the material, between creativity and embodied practices, and finally between creativity and the relational and democratic.

Magne I. Espeland is professor of Music and Education at West Norway University of Applied Sciences (HVL), Campus Stord, in Norway. Specialities are curriculum and resource books development and innovation in music education, educational design studies, research methodologies for education, master and Ph.D – supervision, research and project leadership, consultancy services and program evaluation.

His current activities include the scientific leadership of the research center “Center of Creativities, Arts and Science in Education” (CASE), which is home to Research & Development projects at the intersection of arts, science and creative education.

He was recently Principal Investigator in three NCR (National Research Council of Norway) funded research projects: 1) “Improvisation in Teacher Education” (IMTE) (2013- 2017), 2) “School and Concert – from transmission to Dialogue”, (DisCo) (2016- 2020), and 3) “Building Sustainable Digital Practices in Kindergarten Literacy and Arts Programmes” (DigiSus) (2017- 2021).

Professor Espeland has also recently worked as an advisor and evaluator for the Swedish and Portoguese Research Councils. He was member of the ISME Board for two periods and chaired the ISME World Conference in Bergen in 2002. He has appeared regularly in Ph.D candidate viva assessment and as keynote speaker in many countries, including Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Great Britain, China, Estonia, Ireland and the US. Recent publications include: Holdus. K. & Espeland M. (2018): Music in Future Nordic Schooling: The Potential of the Relational Turn and  Espeland M. (2021): Music Education as Craft: Reframing a Rationale

More information at:


Oscar Odena

Developing higher music education students’ creativity

This keynote discusses the development of musical and general creativities by higher music education students. There is a literature gap on how the development of higher music education students’ innovative projects can be facilitated. We have plenty of suggestions for setting up innovative projects at primary and secondary school level. But what about the nature of the interaction between lecturers and adult students – and between the students themselves – as an innovative project in higher music education unfolds? How can these interactions facilitate the development of the students’ independent thinking? And what is the influence of the lecturer’s approach to the facilitation of creative development in higher music education? This keynote will explore these matters by: (1) reviewing some literature on this topic, including a pragmatic of definition of ‘creativity’ in higher music education; and then (2) profiling an example from a student-led project with conservatoire students focussed on the use of drama to reduce performance anxiety. Based on the links between the literature and this case, in the conclusion I will suggest eight building blocks to facilitate the development of the students’ musical and general creativities within innovative projects in higher music education. These building blocks can be adapted to work across educational contexts including secondary education, instrumental tuition and out-of-school contexts. Some of the ideas draw from my book Musical Creativity Revisited (Routledge, 2018).

Oscar Odena is Professor of Education at the School of Education and the School of Interdisciplinary Studies, University of Glasgow, UK. He has a doctorate from UCL Institute of Education and has held posts at universities in Spain, England and Northern Ireland.

His areas of expertise comprise music education, creativity, qualitative research approaches, social inclusion and professional learning. He was Co-Chair of the Research Commission of the International Society for Music Education (2012–2014) and serves on the Editorial Boards of four leading subject and methodological journals. These include the British Journal of Music Education, Research Studies in Music Education and International Journal of Social Research Methodology. He serves on the review colleges of the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council and the Irish Research Council.

Publications number over 70 peer-reviewed articles, chapters and three books, including the edited book Musical Creativity: Insights from Music Education Research (Ashgate, 2012) and the monograph Musical Creativity Revisited: Educational Foundations, Practices and Research (Routledge, 2018). He is currently working on an edited volume on Music and Social Inclusion to be published later in 2022. He holds dual Spanish and British citizenship and lives in Edinburgh with his wife and two daughters. His web profile is available at


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