Associate Professor Robert Burke

My area of expertise in postgraduate (HDR) supervision is in practice-based artistic research in jazz and improvisation. My research emanates from the creative process of music making such as, what happens in the moment of playing, insightful practitioner-based commentary on the process of creativity and the making of music from the music maker’s perspective. This allows prospective students to investigate their performance/composition from the past and the present, the intuitive and the intellectual, abstract and embodied; researching what they do when they create.

My students focus on developing a strong understanding of process and analysis and what is a scientific approach to their research combined with an artistic methodology. My aim is to create a strong research group that supports each other in developing new knowledge in the area of jazz and improvisation

A sample of past and current students include:

Current PhD students

  • Rod Davies, ‘Critical relationships between creative singing and improvisation skill-sets’
  • Jonathan Zion, ‘Organic interplay in a jazz trio context: identifying idiosyncratic communicative musical language’ 

Past MA students

  • Chris Vizard, ‘An analysis of the doodle tonguing technique and its application to the trombone
  • Jack Beeche, ‘Improvised Counterpoint’ 
  • Caleb Garfinkel, ‘An investigation into the use of the drumkit as a melodic instrument’  
  • Glenn Cannon, ‘Functional and non-functional progressions in improvised music; a method of facilitating linear and harmonic flow’
  • Ben Delves, ‘The shaping of a Melbourne contemporary Jazz scene: the Melbourne Jazz Co-operative, its beginnings and influence’ 

View Professor Robert Burke’s staff profile…