Music is part of the world we live in and many of us take it for granted and give little thought as to what its core function really is.

In the first lecture of the University of Waikato’s Hamilton Public Lecture series, composer and Head of Composition at the University of Waikato Conservatorium of Music Professor Martin Lodge delves into the fundamental question of why do we humans make, play and listen to music? And does music reflect the society it comes from or does it actually help shape that society?

Professor Lodge highlights how changes in technology, such as software engines and automated DJ apps, have brought dramatic change to the field of music and how the internet and social media blur distinctions between composer, performer and listener. He also asks if it is time to rethink what music actually is and how it functions.

The format of the lecture on Tuesday 19 March will break with tradition and the audience will be treated to a special live performance of a short composition by Professor Lodge, given by staff and students from the Conservatorium of Music.

As a composer, Professor Lodge is known for his eclectic and individual style. He has received commissions from the major performance ensembles in New Zealand, including the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, the Auckland Philharmonic, the Ogen Trio and the New Zealand Chamber Soloists, as well as from leading performers in other parts of the world, such as William Dowdall (Ireland) and Timothy Deighton (USA).

After completing university studies in music and English literature, Professor Lodge spent 13 years as a freelance composer and musician, working mainly out of Wellington. In 1995 he was appointed to the staff of the Conservatorium of Music at the University of Waikato.

His recent creative work includes the string quartet Stream written for and recorded by the Polaris Quartet of Shanghai. Current projects include a commission for the New Zealand Trio and a viola concerto. As a scholar, Martin has pioneered the field of music historiography (the theory of music history writing) in New Zealand and in 2016 commissioned the carving of Te Kohinga Taonga Puoro, a comprehensive playing collection of traditional Māori instruments. This collection is held by the Conservatorium.

Professor Lodge's lecture is part of the Hamilton Public Lecture series which introduces the newest professors at the University to the community and gives them a chance to demonstrate how their work is having a real impact on the world around us.

All lectures are free, open to the public and held at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts, beginning at 5.45pm with refreshments available from 5.15pm. Registration is essential – visit the event listing to RSVP. For a complete list of lecture dates, visit the Hamilton Public Lecture series webpage.

Latest stories

Related stories

Calling all short story writers in lockdown: Sargeson Prize open

New Zealand’s richest short story competition, the Sargeson Prize, is open for entries. Sponsored by…

Leading Professor heading up University’s School of Psychology

Noted developmental psychologist, Professor Vincent Reid, is heading up the University of Waikato’s School of…

Caring for 300,000 temporary migrants in New Zealand is a crucial missing link in our coronavirus response

More than one-in-16 people in New Zealand today – or more than 300,000 in total…

University lecturer receives Ordre des Palmes académiques from French government

Senior lecturer in French at the University of Waikato, William Jennings has been made a…

Housing crisis? What crisis? How politicians talk about housing and why it matters

Politicians in many countries around the world claim to be experiencing a “housing crisis”. But…

Student takes once-in-a-lifetime trip to Japan with JENESYS

A cultural exchange to Japan through the JENSEYS programme was a once in a lifetime…

Claudia Ashby and Kelly Petersen - Sir Edmund Hillary Medallists 2020.

Hillary Medalists announced for 2020

A former dentistry student who followed her passion for theatre and an elite endurance swimmer…

Debashish Munshi, Priya Kurian and Sandy Morrison

100% climate resilient?

New research asks how prepared is Aotearoa’s highly valuable tourism sector for the coming impacts…

Corruption Perceptions Index ‘biased’ and ‘flawed’

A University of Waikato researcher has called Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index, released this week,…

Waikato commuters committed to their travel mode of choice - cars

Waikato people are wedded to their cars and although they want to use more sustainable…

It’s “haere rā” for Sky Ma

Chinese international student Sky (Ziqi) Ma graduated with a Bachelor of Social Work month after…

Richard von Sturmer

New writer in residence

Richard von Sturmer has been appointed writer in residence for 2020.