A professional cellist who has toured internationally with some of the world’s leading orchestras has completed Middlesex University’s first Arts Doctorate in Music.
Ferenc Szűcs’ thesis investigates the creative decision-making processes pursued within expert-professional performance practice in the Western art music performance tradition from his point of view as a professional cellist.
Commenting on his research, Mr Szűcs said: “My thesis is different from the traditional doctorate submission in a number of ways and challenges some established research traditions. It examines and documents professional music-performance in terms of a complex knowledge-practical system and asks questions which directly concern the practitioner.
“My work in this research context is highly experimental in terms of the relationship between research methods and expert-creative practice, where the ‘immersed’ researcher is also the research subject.
“The Arts D particularly suited me because it allowed the practice itself to be at the centre of the enquiry, not as an object of study but rather as an insider’s understanding of action in context.”
Mr Szűcs has also praised Middlesex University’s music department saying: “I chose Middlesex for my doctorate because I wanted to study with Professor Susan Melrose as my director of studies. She is a legend in her field and someone who argues for the ‘knowledge status’ of arts-professional expertise in academia. She is a wonderful teacher and her expert instruction, insight and support was invaluable to me throughout my research.”
Over his impressive career, Mr Szűcs has played with the Hungarian State Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Irish Chamber Orchestra among others.
He is also a Senior Lecturer at the University of Limerick’s Irish World Academy of Music and Dance.