The Musical Brain is looking for a new Director

Hilary Bartlett, Trust Secretary and Director of The Musical Brain since its foundation in 2010, has announced her retirement, with effect from September 2017. Working in a voluntary capacity she has had responsibility for the assembly and delivery of events as approved by the trustees, financial control, and initiating and programming conferences, working together with a salaried part time Administrator. In addition, she has provided office space in her home and acted as financial guarantor as and when necessary.

As you can imagine, we will be extremely sorry to lose Hilary. One of the founders of The Musical Brain, she has been at the very heart of the organisation throughout its life and has led and managed its activities with great purpose, charm and good humour, as all who have had dealings with us will know. It will be difficult to find someone to cover all Hilary’s roles, and we are open to proposals that may involve changes to our management structure.

The Musical Brain is unique in the way it combines live performance of the highest standard with cutting-edge scientific debate, involving lecturers and performers in the whole of each event, joining in discussion, interacting with the audience and taking part in panel sessions. We are proud of the ground the Trust has covered, its following and its record to date. Click here for programme archive. 

We have no financial reserves; activities are supported by ticket sales, grants and donations. This approach has worked successfully so far.

This is a fascinating opportunity for someone with a passionate interest in the arts and sciences, relevant experience and vision.  If you are interested as an individual, or as a member of an organisation with an interest in collaborating, please email me:

Greg Harradine, The Musical Brain Administrator: greg@themusicalbrain.orgis available to answer any questions.

As there will be an interregnum until the new director / new organisational structure is in place, the next two Why Sing? conferences: The Power of Singing: Religion, Revolution and Tribalism, originally scheduled for 24 November 2017, and the final two-day conference, Singing Together: Wellbeing and Learning, will now take place at future dates to be advised. Walking with Elgar will take place on 15/16 September as scheduled.


Michael Pugh

Walking with Elgar - 15 & 16 September 2017

A sponsored walk through the landscapes the composer knew and loved.

In September 2016 we organised a two-day sponsorsed walk along the Three Choirs Way, led by Stephen Johnson, exploring the surroundings that Elgar knew and loved.  It was a wonderful two days and our walkers raised a collective total of over £3,400 for The Musical Brain.

It was such a success that we are going to repeat the event in September 2017.  If you are interested in attending and would like to find out more, please CLICK HERE.

This year's walk will follow a different route along the Three Choirs Way including visits to Craig Lea, one of Elgar's homes around Malvern, and to Malvern St James Girls' School, where Stephen Johnson will give a lunchtime talk in discussion with Ian Brown, piano, and Maureen Smith, violin, who will play works by Elgar, including the Violin Sonata.

We provide the organisation, guide, talks and transport if required, free of charge. You will pay only for your accommodation and meals. We all eat together at various restaurants which adds to the enjoyment.

We ask each walker to raise sponsorship from friends, acquaintances and relations. This worked very well last year, with walkers raising an average of £675 each by simply setting up an online sponsorship page and sending it out via email (our administrator, Greg, will be happy to help setting up your sponsorship page). If you would prefer to simply donate to the Musical Brain yourself that of course is fine.

We hope you are able to join us.

Email us to reserve your place or with any questions.

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Why Sing?

We are delighted to announce Why Sing? — three conferences in 2017/18 which explore the evolution, and the physical, psychological and social benefits of singing from the Stone Age to the present day. The Evolution of Singing took place on Friday 28 April in the beautiful Church of the Order of St John - CLICK HERE to view the programme.

Details and dates for the next event, The Power of Singing: Religion, Revolution and Tribalism, and the final two-day conference, Singing Together: Wellbeing and Learning, will be announced in due course.

"The closer to uncertainty and death you are, the more important music becomes."

- Lt Col Bob Meldrum - Music, Poetry and the Trauma of War, LSO St Luke's, 2 November 2014


  • To bring together the worlds of science and the arts
  • To advance understanding of the value of music and other art forms to the mind, brain and body

CLICK HERE for videos and transcripts from our conferences on:

  • Worlds in Collision: Music and the Trauma of War
  • The Beethoven Question: Can Art Make Life Worth Living?
  • Why Music? Is Music Different from the Other Arts?

The Musical Brain ®
Registered Charity Number: 1159843