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Wellcome Collection event about music

by Eva Amsen

If you’re in London this coming weekend, you should drop by the “Why Music?” events at the Wellcome Collection, organised in collaboration with BBC3. The weekend is packed full with three days of talks, workshops and performances all about how music shapes us.


Some events are ticketed, but there are a lot of drop-in events as well, so even if you don’t have any tickets, there’s a lot to see and listen to. Here are few drop-in events that look particularly interesting, with description by the organisers:


Music as medicine – Saturday September 26, 19:30 – 22:00

“Claudia Hammond discusses music and health with guests including music psychologist Adam Ockelford and vocal coach, performer and educator Mary King. They will be exploring how music can help both physical and mental wellbeing, and looking at health problems encountered by musicians.”


The singing ape – Sunday September 27, 14:00 -18:00

“Tom Service probes the latest theories about the origins of music making and how it might have affected human evolutionary development. Was there music before language? Has music helped shape the human brain? Is music anything more than just ‘auditory cheesecake’? To help answer these and many other questions, Tom is joined by Philip Ball, author of The Music Instinct, and Steven Mithen, one of the pioneers of cognitive archaeology.”


Music matters: manipulating the mind – Saturday September 26, 13:00 – 14:00

“In a special edition of Music Matters, Tom Service is joined by guests to explore how music can be used to manipulate or control patterns of behaviour. This ranges from music’s use as a tool to subdue or intimidate, and its use in public places to tackle antisocial behaviour or influence consumer activity, to the subconscious role it has in our daily lives. The programme will look at historical and present-day examples and delve into the science behind music’s persuasive effect on the brain.”

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