Announcing the first Keynote speaker: Professor Gary E. McPherson

Prepare to be inspired to improve and move music education!

Gary E. McPherson

Have your ever heard a keynote speaker who:

  • causes a harp-like reverberation in your every nerve
  • makes you want to stand-up and shout out ‘Yes! Yes! Yes!’
  • gives you hope for music education and for creating possible futures
  • you just need to personally meet and thank after
  • inspires you to change, create impact and take positive, practical actions?

We have! Every time we have had the pleasure of hearing Professor Gary E. McPherson speak.

We are so excited that Gary has accepted our invitation to be one of the keynote speakers at the EAS conference in Malmö 2019. Gary has inspired the field of music education in many ways through his vast contributions. He has a broad research interest with an interdisciplinary approach and his most important research examines, for example:

  • Young people’s beliefs and everyday life experience with music and their motivation to learn music and grow to love music in their lives
  • The developmental assets, both personal and social, that are acquired from learning music and the positive consequences for music learners’ emotional wellbeing and social development
  • The family, peer group, teacher and other personal and social dynamics that best promote music learning
  • The types of enabling conditions offered in schools that can maximize student commitment to, engagement with, and flourishing in, music related learning opportunities
  • The reason why music is important in the education of all children.

Gary is currently the Ormond Professor and Director of the Melbourne Conservatorium of Music at the University of Melbourne, and a former President of the International Society for Music Education. He has published over 200 articles and book chapters and served as editor or co-editor for some of the most prominent publications in music education, including important volumes for Oxford University Press: The Oxford Handbook of Music Education (2012, 2108), the Child as Musician: A Handbook of Musical Development (2006, 2016) and Musical Prodigies: Interpretations from Psychology, Education, Musicology and Ethnomusicology (2016). These are just a few highlights from his inspiring career.

Gary’s keynote – “The Music Education I’d Like” – will show how teachers can better meet the needs of all music learners. He will talk about the most basic psychological needs that all children need fulfilled in order to thrive, and how teachers can satisfy these needs when teaching music. These include feeling autonomous and in control of one’s learning, feeling connected with others, and feeling competent and confident within oneself when singing, playing, and making music. Included also will be examples of the types of teacher-student-peer interactions and learning environments that encourage learners to develop a growth mindset and a passion for learning music. Gary will also highlight why music is important in schools by drawing parallels between the development of language literacy and musical literacy, how creative and social skills are developed through and in music, and the types of skills, knowledge and understandings that are wonderfully and uniquely developed through exposure to a music education. All of this information will help us understand how to make music learning visible to everyone involved in, or observers of, the educational process.


Announcing the second Keynote speaker: Professor Eva Sæther

We are thrilled to announce Professor Eva Sæther as the second keynote speaker at the 27th EAS Conference and 7th ISME Regional Conference in Malmö.

eva saether-ohne weiß

Eva is as vibrant as a keynote speaker as a researcher as a music educator as a musician. It is the unique merge of these professions that offers fascinating perspectives on music education and a perfect fit for a keynote at this conference.

Eva Sæther is a professor in Music Education with Educational Sciences as profile at Malmö Academy of Music, Lund university. With a musical point of departure in Swedish traditional fiddle music, she has developed a research profile that focuses on intercultural perspectives on musical learning and creativity(ies). In 2003 she defended her doctoral thesis ”The Oral University. Attitudes to music teaching and learning in the Gambia” – a research project that laid the foundation for further development of musically informed research methods. Further research interests are social sustainability and collaborative learning. She also teaches educational sciences at the music teacher education program, and supervise students at graduate, master and PhD levels.

Evas vast international experience covers participation in international research projects and active involvement in for example the International Society for Music Education (ISME), where she is currently a board member and the Music in Schools and Teacher Education Commission, where she was one of the commissioners (2008 – 2014). She have been active in the international network Cultural Diversity in Music Education (CDIME) since its origins in the network Teaching World Music. 2013 – 2016 she mentored the doctoral students at the Institution for Educational Sciences at Campus Helsingborg. From 2016 she is active as supervisor and researcher at Campus Helsingborg. Since 2015 she is a docent at University of the Arts, Helsinki, and member of The International Advisory Board in the project “Global Visions Through Mobilizing Networks: Co-developing Intercultural Music Teacher Education in Finland, Israel and Nepal” funded by the Academy of Finland 2015-2019.

Evas keynote is based on research on how the Art and Music School in Malmö, through the implementation of El Sistema since 2013, navigates in the tension fields that emerge when music educators balance artistic and social expectations on their profession. Since the implementation of El Sistema the music school in Malmö has been able to include children from all backgrounds in the targeted public schools, and it seems that the persistent work in the socially vulnerable areas of the city has been convincing also to the politicians as the funding of music education is now firmly directed to the city’s poor areas. As a whole the El Sistema activities can be seen as aligning with the policy recommendations introduced in 2016 in the national report for reformation of cultural schools (Kulturskoleutredningen 2016). In the further expansion of El Sistema the ambition has been to include schools outside the segregated areas. The new orchestras of 2018 is one step ahead acting on the basis of gained experience that gives the courage to start demanding processes. In addition, the development of group teaching methods, the outreach concerts and the political expectations on ‘social effects’ alongside the development of musical skills has moved both the teachers and the leaders out of their comfort zones. At the core of Malmö El Sistema is the growing web of contacts and partnerships between the involved institutions and the related new interprofessional collaboration between the El Sistema music teachers, school leaders from the Arts and Music school and the elementary school as well as musicians from the local symphony orchestra. And of course: The El Sistema children. In this keynote their voices, visions and music are included.