Portrait of Professor Michael Russ Professor Michael Russ

m.russ@hud.ac.uk | 01484 472359


Michael Russ holds degrees from Sheffield (BMus), Belfast (Master 's by research on the work of Roberto Gerhard) and Ulster (PhD on the analysis of post-tonal music). He also studied the clarinet at the Royal Academy of Music. Before coming to the University of Huddersfield in 2002, he lectured at the University of Ulster, becoming Head of Media and Performing Arts there in 1998.

Russ was given a Distinguished Teaching Award by the University of Ulster in 1996 and won a Westrup Prize for Musicology for the most outstanding article in the journal Music and Letters in 1994.

Michael Russ was made a National Teaching Fellow in 2008 in recognition of his work in research and development of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. He is frequently called upon to review and referee for major journals and to serve on national committees. From 2002-7 he served on the Management Committee of PALATINE; he was twice elected to Committee of the National Association for Music in Higher Education (2002–4, 2005–7). He is a Board member of Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.

Research and Scholarship

Russ 's published work has largely focused on analytical, theoretical and historical questions in late nineteenth and early twentieth-century music. He is the author of a book on Musorgsky 's Pictures at an Exhibition, analytical articles on Bartók, Musorgsky, Ravel and Webern and articles on theoretical and analytical topics. He has also published work on teaching and learning in higher education and Irish composers.

Russ's current research has three points of focus. At the moment he is working on a project to examine the nature of the influence of Beethoven on Bartók, he is working on the completion, extension and application of the late Anthony Pople 's Tonalities analysis software and is also developing his work on parsimonious voice-leading in chromatic and extended tonal music.

Publications and Other Research Outputs


Russ, M. and Adkins, M. (2015) Perspectives on Gerhard: Selected Proceedings of the 2nd and 3rd International Roberto Gerhard Conferences . Huddersfield: University of Huddersfield. ISBN 978-1-86218-128-1


Russ, M (2014) ‘Formal Structure in the Finale of Bartok’s Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion’. In: Irish Musical Analysis. Dublin: Four Courts Press. . ISBN 978-1-84682-368-8


Russ, M. and Adkins, M. (2013) The Roberto Gerhard Companion . : Ashgate. ISBN 9781409445159

Russ, M (2013) ‘Music as Autobiography: Roberto Gerhard’s Violin Concerto’. In: The Roberto Gerhard Companion. : Ashgate. . ISBN 9781409445159

Russ, M (2013) ‘Composing with Sets: Roberto Gerhard’s Concerto for Piano and String Orchestra’. In: The Roberto Gerhard Companion. : Ashgate. . ISBN 9781409445159


Russ, M (2012) ‘Bartók, Beethoven and the Sonata for Two Pianos and PercussionJournal of the Royal Musical Association , 137 (2), pp. 307-349. ISSN 0269-0403


Russ, M (2011) ‘Book review : Evan Jones (ed.), Intimate Voices: the Twentieth-Century String QuartetJournal of the Society for Musicology in Ireland , 6, pp. 101-112. ISSN 1649-7341


Russ, M (2009) ‘Book Review: Analyzing Atonal Music: Pitch-Class Set Theory and Its Contexts. By Michiel Schuijer.Music and Letters , 90 (4), pp. 722-725. ISSN 0027-4224

Winterson, J. and Russ, M. (2009) ‘Understanding the Transition from School to University in Music and Music TechnologyArts and Humanities in Higher Education , 8 (3), pp. 339-354. ISSN 1474-0222


Winterson, J. and Russ, M. (2008) Understanding the transition from school to university in music and related subjects Huddersfield: University of Huddersfield (Submitted)

Winterson, J. and Russ, M. (2008) Understanding the transition from school to university in music and related subjects Available at: http://www.hud.ac.uk/tqef/1c_research.html

Winterson, J. and Russ, M. (2008) ‘Are A Levels a good preparation for university?’. In: ‘Doing University’: Student Transitions and Skills in Higher Education, 19 March 2008, University of Huddersfield


Russ, M. and Winterson, J. (2007) ‘Transition from School to UniversityClassroom Music , 4 (3), pp. 12-13.

Winterson, J. and Russ, M. (2007) ‘From school to university: how well prepared are today’s music technology undergraduates?’. In: International Music Technology Education Conference 2007, 19-20 October 2007, Leeds College of Music

Russ, M (2007) Defining Musical Languages using Tonalities Available at: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/music/tonalities/russ/index.htm

Russ, M (2007) ‘Some Observations on Pm,n Relations within Set ClassesMusic Analysis , 26 (1-2), pp. 111-158. ISSN 02625245


Russ, M (2004) ‘Fishing in the right place: analytical examples from the Tonalities projectMusic Analysis , 23 (2-3), pp. 195-244. ISSN 0262-5245

Pople, A., Russ, M., Cook, N. and Cross, J. (2004) ‘Editorial, completion and editing of Pople, A. 'Using complex set theory for tonal analysis: an introduction to the Tonalities Project'Music Analysis , 23 (2-3), pp. 153-194. ISSN 0262-5245


Russ, M (2003) ‘Some Observations on Form-Building Processes in Twentieth-Century Music: Shaping time in Ian Wilson’s ‘Rich Harbour: Concerto for Organ and Orchestra’’. In: Irish Music in the Twentieth Century. Dublin: Four Courts Press. pp. 109-133. ISBN 1-85182-647-5


Russ, M (2000) ‘Ravel and the orchestra’. In: The Cambridge companion to Ravel. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. . ISBN 9780521648561

Russ, M (2000) ‘Accounting and Mediating: Modes, Genera, Voice-leading and Form in MilhaudMusic Analysis , 19 (2), pp. 233-255. ISSN 0262-5245


Russ, M (1996) ‘"Be Bored": Reading a Mussorgsky Song19th-Century Music , 20 (1), pp. 27-45. ISSN 0148-2076


Russ, M. and Hunter, D. (1995) ‘Case study 10: Peer assessment in performance studies’. In: Enhancing student learning through peer tutoring in higher education. Ulster: University of Ulster. . ISBN 9781859230664


Russ, M (1994) ‘Functions, scales, abstract systems and contextual hierarchies in the music of BartokMusic and Letters , 75 (3), pp. 401-425. ISSN 0027-4224


Russ, M (1993) ‘On Schenkerism: A Closed Circle of Elite Listeners?Music Analysis , 12 (2), pp. 266-285. ISSN 0262-5245


Russ, M (1992) Musorgsky: pictures at an exhibition . Cambridge music handbooks. : Cambridge University Press. ISBN 9780521386074


Russ, M (1990) ‘The Mysterious Thread in Musorgsky's 'Nursery'Music Analysis , 9 (1), pp. 47-66. ISSN 0262-5245

Russ, M (1990) ‘Atonality, modality, symmetry and tonal hierarchy in Bartok's improvisation Op. 20 No. 2’. In: Musicology in Ireland. : Irish Academic Press. pp. 278-294. ISBN 9780716524564


Russ, M (1988) ‘Temporal and Pitch Structure in Webern's Orchestral Piece Op. 10, No. 2Music Analysis , 7 (3), pp. 247-280. ISSN 0262-5245

Research Degree Supervision

Professor Russ is keen to supervise projects in the area of music theory and analysis, particularly of late nineteenth and early twentieth-century music. He is particularly anxious to supervise projects developing and utilising neo-Riemannian, pitch-class set and Schenkerian theory. He is also interested in supervising work which examines the concepts of influence and borrowing in music.

Topics in learning and teaching music and the humanities in higher education are also of interest to him, particularly research examining the process of transition from School to University, peer learning and the assessment and feedback processes.

He is currently supervising a PhD examining the early music of Roberto Gerhard and is currently a co-supervisor for a number of projects on contemporary instrumental performance practice. He has just completed the successful co-supervision of a PhD on opera in Manchester in the nineteenth century.