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Research in Piteå – Music Performance

Music Performance is a subject where artistic issues relevant to musical creativity and learning are examined. The subject combines knowledge forms in art and science, and encompasses the entire field of musical contexts and genres. Research in Music Performance is carried out in collaboration with professional music organisations, but also through interdisciplinary collaboration across art forms and other scientific disciplines.

Research in Music Performance has been conducted at School of Music in Piteå at Luleå University of Technology since 2004. The Academy of Music's research environment today has a strong international profile in research on musical interaction, with a base in the research cluster GEMM (Gesture, Embodiment and Machines in Music). This is an interdisciplinary research environment, where research in audio engineering is also an important component. Research in Music Performance is deeply rooted in artistic practices and professional knowledge. Artistic results take the form of performances, scores and recordings. Here, Studio Acusticum and the University Organ constitute a very important infrastructure.

In the international research project The Global Hyperorgan, GEMM and Luleå University of Technology are a leading partner, together with Orgelpark in Amsterdam, wherein the unique properties of the University organ create new artistic and scientific possibilities. GEMM also collaborates with Norrbotten NEO in the creation of new works with interactive technologies.

Research in Musical design involves the entire environment in Piteå in collaborative projects that have further branches both within Luleå University of Technology as well as nationally and internationally. The central building block is the research cluster GEMM (Gesture, Embodiment and Machines in Music), which is led by Professor and Head of Subject Stefan Östersjö. GEMM was founded in 2018, and conducts internationally leading and interdisciplinary research on interactivity in musical creation.

GEMM conducts basic research in musical design through the development of methods for multimodal data collection and analysis. At the same time, the applied research is important, and here the collaboration with professional actors in the music life is a central factor. GEMM aims to drive development in music life, regionally, nationally and internationally. In direct collaboration with regional actors such as Norrbotten NEO and Studio Acusticum, as well as with the music technology company Gestrument, new artistic projects, compositions and technological tools are created that carry the music further in society.

At the Academy of Music, research in musical design is an integral part of education at the undergraduate and advanced level. In order to develop the relationship between research and education, postgraduate education is also given in musical design with a special focus on pedagogy in higher music education.

Research project

  • Pop into My Head: An Inside Perspective on the Making and Shaping of Melodies in Popular Songwriting (David Myhr)
  • Let the Singers Loose! An Artistic Investigation of Norms for Voice Types and Gender Structures within Opera (Tove Dahlberg)
  • Musical Gestures in Performance: A Creative Space in Music Making (Kerstin Frödin)
  • ELPIS – Reconstruction and Innovation: Creative Processes in Making a Contemporary ‘Renaissance’ Opera (Daniel Stighäll)
  • Composing a Cultural Environment – Minority Languages and Culture as the Basis of Musical Creation (Torbjörn Ömalm)


Stefan Östersjö

Stefan Östersjö, Professor and Head of Subject

Phone: +46 (0)911 72606
Organisation: Musical Performance, Music, Media and Theatre, Department of Social Sciences, Technology and Arts
Music student winner of international flute competition

On 27 March 2022 Rafael Adobas Bayog was awarded with the 1st prize in the Kobe International Flute Competition. Rafael Adobas Bayog is a flutist in the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and a student from the International Orchestra Academy at Piteå School of Music, Luleå University of Technology.

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Students' work is premiered to a audience of millions of audiences

Erik Karsendal is studying composition at the School of Music in Piteå at Luleå University of Technology. His piece "Snön" ("The Snow") will be premiered during a concert from Studio Acusticum in Piteå which is broadcasted to millions of listeners through the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

Studio musician becomes this year's Allan Edwall Fellow

Bassist Klas Höglund has been awarded the 2021 Allan Edwall scholarship. He is currently studying to be a studio musician at the Academy of Music in Piteå at Luleå University of Technology.