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Professor Brian Cox

Star Lecture Series at The University of Manchester

Our Star Lecture Series has been developed to allow teachers and pupils access to exciting curriculum resources, delivered by some of our leading academic staff.

Filmed and recorded at the University, these lectures cover topic areas on the national curriculum and exam syllabuses. They link school and college work to current research and offer an insight into university study.

The series aims to cover a variety of different subject areas and age ranges, from Year 9 to sixth-form students. As well as booking your place for upcoming Star Lectures, you can watch videos of previous Star Lectures and see accompanying information, such as suggested further reading. See the left-hand menu for a list of previous lectures.

Confirmed Star Lectures for 2017/18

Humanities Star Lectures

Ghosts in the Machine: 9/11 and Music Technology

Delivered by Dr Kevin Malone, Reader in Composition, School of Arts, Languages and Cultures.

  • Date: Tuesday, 5 December 2017
  • Time: 6pm to 7.15pm
  • Location: The University of Manchester, Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama
  • For: Years 12 and 13 / Key Stage 5 pupils

Kevin Malone’s compositions about 9/11 are based on oral histories of witnesses recalling the events. Using a variety of sources from broadcast news bulletins to recording his own interviews with witnesses, Kevin has listened carefully to how people related their experiences – their exclamations, hesitant recollections, pensive asides – and then notated the music within their voices. He captured their pitches, rhythms and phrases to make instrumental melodies.

"Eighteen Minutes", the core work of this cycle, was listed as one of the top 20 recommended tracks for September 2016 by Naxos, the world's largest classical music label. Naxos chose "Eighteen Minutes" from 1.9 million tracks.

The lecture includes an historical background of the events, video and audio examples of the music, an explanation of the technique, notes on ethical issues, and a live demonstration with audience interaction on how it works.

NB: If your students will be attending without a teacher/staff member, please ask them to complete the individual booking form as we will require emergency contact details for any students attending alone.

YouTube channel

Our YouTube channel has a number of videos about The University of Manchester. Edited versions of the Star Lectures by Professor Brian Cox and others are also available there for use by learners and teachers.


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