PRiSM Composers Transform Health Data into Music

16 September 2019

Health data research group Connected Health Cities and RNCM composers collaborate to transform five key projects into contemporary musical pieces.

Connected Heath Cities (CHC) has been conducting research across the North of England, using health data to improve the lives of patients and increase our understanding of disease. Now, CHC is bringing its research out of the lab by collaborating with composers from PRiSM (the RNCM Centre for Practice and Research in Science and Music) to transform five key projects into contemporary musical pieces.

Come and find out how health data is used in harmony with research at a live performance of five new works at Manchester Museum, inspired by diverse health data projects ranging from tackling antibiotic resistance to improving care for patients with epilepsy.

The new pieces were created by RNCM doctoral composers Caroline Bordignon, Nate Chivers, Tywi Roberts, Isabel Benito Gutiérrez and Zakiya Leeming – and will be performed by Festivo Winds, a Wind Quintet formed at the RNCM.

Professor Emily Howard, Director of PRiSM said: ‘PRiSM is proud to be partnering with Connected Health Cities for this collaboration. We’re keen to find ways to take a lead in interdisciplinary and reflexive research between the creative arts and the sciences, and for this research to make a real contribution to society. Thanks to RNCM PRiSM doctoral student, Zakiya Leeming, for creating and shaping this brilliant opportunity and I’m personally very excited to learn more about the compositions and collaborative processes.

Zakiya Leeming added: ‘This project has given myself and other doctoral composers at PRiSM the opportunity not only to see how our work can explore innovations in healthcare happening here in the North but also how we can help to share these achievements with the public. As the PRiSM lead on this project, I have seen how integral patient engagement and public consent is to the CHC method. We hope to demonstrate the strength of working together across disciplines to create new, publicly accessible  information pathways between science and music, for the better health of all.


PRiSM Health Data News

Composer Nate Chivers worked with the Public Involvement and Engagement Senate (PIES) for his commission

Dr Amanda Lamb, Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer at Connected Health Cities said of the project: ‘We have been delighted to work with PRISM on this exciting new initiative. For a long time we have been exploring new ways to reach out and have conversations about health data. Communication through music has expanded our #DataSavesLives message by bringing together two complementary worlds. To hear our journey explained through this medium has been a moving experience.

Rachel Thompson, Project Manager at CHC added: ‘A key strand of our work is to engage the public in a conversation about the use of their health data in this type of research. By linking composers from  PRiSM with five of our research projects, we hope to use music to continue this discussion in a novel and innovative way.’

The performance was held at Manchester Museum on 19 September 2019.