Home Musicians and Scientists Interview with musician and scientist Boyan Bonev

Interview with musician and scientist Boyan Bonev

by Eva Amsen

I met Boyan at a biology workshop in September. As part of the workshop, all thirty participants had to introduce themselves using two slides. The first slide had to be about your work, and the second had to include some interesting non-science-related fact about you. Strangely, only two of the participants mentioned a music-related fact. That’s below what you’d expect from a room full of scientists, but it turns out that a few people just decided to not mention their music on their slide, because they thought it’d be unoriginal. There were actually about four or five musicians there. The two people who did mention music on their introduction slide were me and Boyan Bonev.

I met Boyan again in April, when we both attended the same conference. He won an award for writing the best developmental biology PhD thesis in the UK this year, and I interviewed him about that for work. Then I left the recorder running, and we did a second interview about science and music. Many thanks to Boyan for agreeing to do two interviews at 8AM on the day after a conference party…

Here’s a fragment of our conversation, in which Boyan talks about his decision to not pursue an academic music career, and explains the Bulgarian system of music education.

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