What's On

RNCM Research Forum – Disability Studies in Music

Wednesday 31 January 2024, 4.15pm

RNCM Carole Nash Recital Room

RNCM Research Forums

Our series of Research Forums gives audiences the opportunity to hear presentations from academics, performers and composers, and to engage in the exchange of ideas that follows. Talks usually last about an hour, including a Q&A session. You can join us in person or watch many of the sessions livestreamed from the RNCM YouTube channel.

Our forum this week will be part of RNCM Disability Week. Now in its second year, this event is in memory of the late composer Lucy Hale and features events exclusively by disabled, d/Deaf and neurodivergent artists, creatives, and researchers.

RNCM Disability Week 2024 is supported by Arts and Humanities Research Council via NWCDTP.

The Cyborg, the Tryborg and the Crip Tech – Navigating the use of technology interfacing the body

As we look further towards the use of technology as assistive and additive to the body, we forget to ask the question, what’s wrong with being human? Amongst discourse of the Posthuman we find modes of thinking which replicate enlightenment racism, sexism and ableism. Hurtling towards a future whilst maintaining parochial mindsets of hierarchy and power dynamics are we just doomed to repeat ourselves in an ever more dystopian comedy of errors?

Disabled Studies currently holds some of the most exciting and radical philosophy on this subject. Disabledness places people in the position of “outsider” which gives a unique position from which to be able to critique postmodern hyper-capitalist technological development. Disabled people’s perspective however is viewed as existing in a silo, only relevant to other disabled people. What might happen if we considered this outsider viewpoint as a revealing perspective, dealing with the key question of “what does it mean to be a human being whilst dependent on technology and humanity?”

Amble Skuse is a musician and artist, working with found sound, voices, electronic processing, and site specific locations. She works with oral history archives, interviews, community memories, radio interviews, found sounds and site specific compositions to explore myriad identities in myriad locations.

She explores these ideas of identity and power through a lens of intersectional feminism. Her focus is on disability, and she is currently studying for a PhD looking at ways in which a disabled composer / performer can ustilise technology as a tool for composing, improvising and performing.

Her work has been featured on BBC Radio 3’s Late Junction, and has taken her across the world, from Edinburgh to Singapore on a 10,000 mile train journey, to Canada to develop an improvising platform with disabled musicians, to China to explore the role of ‘being’ in improvisation, to Croatia to perform with the female coding ensemble OFFAL. She is a Creative Entrepreneurs Fellow and a BBC Performing Arts Fellow. She holds an AHRC scholarship for her research.


The Royal Northern College of Music is committed to ensuring that all our visitors have a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Please click the following link to find information regarding our access facilities: https://www.rncm.ac.uk/visit-us/access/


Watch Live
Wednesday 31 January 2024, 4.15pm