Media and lectures

Digital Humanities

Sophie Fuller and I are currently working on a digital humanities project, Sounding the Salon, which explores the Victorian musical and literary salon through recorded recreations, manuscript scans, and essays. Through audience perspectives captured via the social media of today (e.g., tweeting), the site also creates an archive of salon experiences today. While the website is in progress, please visit my professional facebook page for videos and photos of the first of our recreated salons.

Sounding Tennyson, another publicly-available digital resource, presents the first recordings and publications of Emily Tennyson’s piano/vocal settings of Alfred Tennyson's poem, “Break, Break, Break,” multiple musical and textual drafts, and commentary. In future, the site will expand to present all twenty-four Emily Tennyson musical settings of her husband’s poems.


Past projects include being featured in voice-over and on camera in The Birth of British Music: Mendelssohn – The Prophet, a production of BBC Two Television, using materials from my published research. Other interviewees were Poet Laureate Andrew Motion, noted musicologist John Deathridge (King's College, London), and Riccardo Chailly (Music Director, Leipzig Gewandhaus - i.e., Mendelssohn's successor). The four-part series, which also included segments on Purcell, Handel and Haydn, was presented by Charles Hazlewood and produced by Francesca Kemp. To date, the program has aired in May 2009, July 2010 and May 2017 in prime viewing slots on BBC Two, BBC 2 Wales, BBC HD, and BBC Four. You can view it here.


Writer and presenter, The Essay, “Unsung Heroines of Classical Music: Mary Gladstone,” BBC Radio 3. Produced by Simon Richardson. Aired 10:45-11:00 pm, 5 March 2015. Click here for the podcast.

Public invited lectures (selected)

Talk at the British Academy. "Gladstone, Music and Liberalism." Part of the month-long exploration of, “With great power: political leaders, popular legacies." 16 June 2016. Click here for the audio recording.

The Annual Gladstone Lecture. “Coals of Fire and The Lover’s Tale: The Gladstones and the Tennysons.” Gladstone's Library, Hawarden, Wales. 5/11.

Lecture/recital at the Royal Academy of Music. “The ‘paradise of pedants’: The English Musical Renaissance and Progressive Composers in Fin-de-Siècle Fiction.” Music and Performance in Nineteenth-Century Britain endowed series. Royal Academy of Music, London. 11/04.

Academic invited lectures (selected)


“Wagner in his Armchair, George Eliot on the Sofa, and Mary Gladstone’s Political Response to Daniel Deronda.” Inaugural English Department Colloquium on Opera & Fiction. University of St Andrews. 5/13.

Lecture Series, Seminar Series and Colloquia

“Triangulated Criticism, Song, and Daniel Deronda.” Song Seminar (interdisciplinary). Faculty of English, University of Cambridge. 3/17.

"Aesthetic Criticism, Lived Liberalism and Daniel Deronda." Victorian Literature Graduate Seminar. Faculty of English, University of Oxford. 11/15. 

“Hearing Tennyson.” 19th Century Graduate Seminar, Faculty of English, University of Cambridge. 2/14.

“Triangulated Listening: Wagner, George Eliot and Gladstonian Liberalism.” Music Department Colloquium, University of Nottingham. 12/13.

“‘One heard the words, and one heard the latent music’: Tennyson’s and Wagner’s salon readings.” Music Department Research Seminar. University of Southampton. 10/11.

“George Eliot and the Prima Donna’s ‘Script’.” Musicology Colloquium. Northwestern University School of Music. 1/08.

“Webs, Waves, and Weaves: 19th-Century British Poetry and Music as Mutually Constituted.” 19th Century and Beyond British Cultural Studies Working Group. English Department. University of California, Berkeley. 2/04.

“Brontë’s Villette and the Concert Hall as a Site of Social Discord.” Music Department Colloquium. Yale University. 2/03.

 Twitter, @SoundingSalon

Twitter, @SoundingSalon

 A recreated salon from March 1873 in the original space (Prime Minister Gladstone's music room, now home to the British Academy).

A recreated salon from March 1873 in the original space (Prime Minister Gladstone's music room, now home to the British Academy).

BBC - The Birth of British Music: Mendelssohn — The Prophet.

  The Birth of British Music: Mendelssohn - The Prophet

The Birth of British Music: Mendelssohn - The Prophet

Image credit: BBC Radio 3

Image credit: Royal Academy of Music

Image credit: University of St Andrews English Department