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Research Collaborator

University of Western Sydney

Dubbed one of Australia’s ‘renaissance men,’ Dr. Dean has always been a musician involved in creative work, while pursuing a changing range of research endeavours. He is now researching music computation and cognition, following extensive earlier work in musicology. Dr. Dean also has an active career as a composer/improviser as founder and artistic director of austraLYSIS, a new media performance and creative ensemble. He has made more than thirty commercial recordings, available internationally, performed in more than 30 countries, and composes to commissions for chamber groups, in computer music, and for improvising ensembles. He has published five research books on musical improvisation, hypermedia, computer-interactive sound improvisation, and Australian jazz. In May 2007, he completed a term as vice-chancellor and president of the University of Canberra, where he created the Sonic Communications Research Group, an interdisciplinary group of researchers and educators working with sound as a medium for creative communication. Dr. Dean trained in biochemistry at Cambridge University and received his PhD for work at Strangeways Research Laboratory, Cambridge. In 1984, he received a D.Sc. from Brunel University, from where he also earned a D.Litt. in humanities in 2001. From 1988-2002 he led the Heart Research Institute, during which time it gained an international standing.

So one of the things that improvisation has come to mean in the context of highly technological performance is that improvisation is the last claim to the legitimate presence of a human in the performance of music.

– Bob Ostertag