Postdoctoral Fellow position: Analysis, creation and teaching of orchestration (ACTOR), McGill University

A two-year position as a postdoctoral fellow (PDF) is available at the Schulich School of Music ( of McGill University. The PDFs will work within an international, interdisciplinary partnership directed by Prof. Stephen McAdams, and including McGill faculty members in composition (Denys Bouliane, John Rea, Philippe Leroux), music theory (Robert Hasegawa), sound recording (Martha de Francisco), music technology (Philippe Depalle, Ichiro Fujinaga, Stephen McAdams), and conducting (Guillaume Bourgogne). The ACTOR Partnership ( proposes to bring the often-neglected topics of timbre and orchestration to the forefront of musical scholarship and practice, through a collaboration including world-class artists, scholars, and scientists.

This Partnership links major North American and European universities, conservatories, research centres, orchestras, and companies to develop a solid theoretical basis for orchestration practice and pedagogy, to stimulate the development of new creativity-enhancing digital tools for teaching and learning orchestration, and to apply tools of corpus analysis and machine learning to better understand orchestration practice in over four centuries of music. The partnership is organized into three primary research axes: 1) Analysis Axis – score, text, audio, perception and performance analysis of orchestration practice and interpretation, 2) Tool Development Axis – development of computer-aided orchestration and orchestral simulation environments, an orchestration research database, and an online interactive orchestration resource, 3) Output Innovation Axis – applying the analysis-based research and tools to innovation in orchestration pedagogy, music scholarship and composition.

The post-doctoral researcher will work primarily on the Output Innovation Axis and will be involved in project coordination and research on orchestration in the fields of music theory and musicology, orchestration pedagogy, and compositional practice. They will participate in the development of methods for evaluating the impact of this research in those domains and will co-supervise graduate and undergraduate students. The ideal candidate will have a doctoral degree in music theory, musicology, or composition, with a strong background in orchestration and an interest in pedagogical innovation. A deep knowledge of common-practice and contemporary orchestral repertoire is a significant plus. Additional tasks include being co-chair of the ACTOR Training and Mentoring Committee, coordinating development of the Online Orchestration Resource (see, organizing the ACTOR Symposium semi-annually at McGill University, contributing to the annual ACTOR Workshops, and communicating with specialist and general audiences (including dissemination through social media and blog posts). Ability to communicate fluently in French is an asset.

There will be ample opportunity for collaboration with team members at McGill and with the other institutional partners. The PDF will be co-supervised by Robert Hasegawa, ACTOR Associate Director, and Stephen McAdams, ACTOR Director.

Applicants must have received their doctorate (PhD, DMA, DMus) within 3 years of the starting date of the fellowship. They should submit a cover letter, CV, and 3 representative papers or 2 papers and a composition, and arrange for 3 letters of reference to be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Applications will be reviewed as of April 15, 2020 until the position is filled. The ideal start date is June 1, 2020 to provide overlap with the incumbent PDF, but August 1, 2020 is the latest start date. For further details on the ACTOR Partnership to decide if this PDF is a good fit for you, please contact Stephen McAdams (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and Robert Hasegawa (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

The Schulich School of Music is an internationally recognized university-based music faculty with humanistic, scientific and engineering research, composition and music performance. It houses the multi-university Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (CIRMMT). McGill University is a world-class institution in the culturally and scientifically vibrant city of Montreal.