RMA Student Committee
The RMA Student Committee liaises between the wider student body and the RMA, acting as a voice for students in the RMA and taking an active role in shaping and promoting student-related activities of the RMA.
Who we are
The RMA Student Committee is led by the two RMA Student Representatives. It also includes up to four Ordinary Student Members, the Student Liaison Officer, the Research Training Officer, the Communications Officer, and the Trustee. Information about the current Committee can be found below. More information on RMA Officers can be found here.
Student members of the committee are elected annually and stand for two years. Information on Student Committee elections are announced in September or October.
What we do
Our work includes canvassing students for their opinions on RMA-related student matters, fielding issues raised by students, promoting the RMA in our departments and helping organise the annual Research Students’ Conference.
If you have an idea for something the RMA could do for students, or if you want to raise any other issues, please contact one of our student representatives.
Faith Thompson (Student Representative, 2023-2024)
Faith Thompson is a PhD Musicology student at the Royal Northern College of Music, researching the career and reputation of French composer-conductor Gabriel Pierné (1863–1937). Her project is funded by the AHRC and supervised by Professor Barbara Kelly, Professor Denis Herlin and Dr David Jones. Faith completed her BA (Music with French) and MusM (Musicology) at the University of Manchester. For both degrees, she was awarded the Music department’s prize for the highest overall mark in her cohort. A student at the Junior RNCM from the age of nine, Faith was awarded the DipABRSM in piano performance with Distinction, and continues to enjoy her instrument.
Mollie Carlyle (Student Representative, 2023-2025)
Mollie is a PhD student at the University of Aberdeen where she is currently undertaking research into the life and legacy of ‘the last shantyman’, Stan Hugill. Mollie’s doctoral thesis is a collaborative project between the Music department and the Elphinstone Institute for the study of Ethnology, Folklore and Ethnomusicology, combining ethnographic fieldwork, oral history and archival study. Mollie’s wider interest in maritime history has led to her taking on advisory roles at maritime music events and festivals, as well as being commissioned to create audio guides for classic works of nautical literature, including the behemoth that is Herman Melville’s Moby Dick. Mollie is an editor on the Granite postgraduate journal at the University of Aberdeen and is currently undertaking both a research internship on ethics in practice research entitled ‘A Scoping Project – Ethical Engagements in Creative Practice Research and Teaching’, as well as a research internship with Aberdeen City Council looking at chattel slavery in relation to specific locations in Aberdeenshire. Alongside her studies, Mollie also works as a performer of maritime music, composer and transcriber, recently publishing a book of sea shanties for the penny whistle.
Ordinary Student Members
Sebastian Bank Jørgensen (Ordinary member, 2023-2025)
Sebastian Bank Jørgensen is a PhD Musicology student at Northumbria University where he is researching German modal theory in the 16th century, specifically focusing on the term repercussio and examining the cultural, historical, and paratextual contexts surrounding its creation and dissemination. He studied a BA and MA in Musicology with a minor in English at the University of Copenhagen, where he graduated with distinction with his thesis on traditions of modal theory from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. His research interests mostly lie within medieval and Early Modern history and music theory/analysis, but his wider music interests include hip-hop history, extreme metal, and the Arabic oud.
Niki Zohdi (Ordinary member, 2023-2025)
Niki Zohdi is a composer, tenor and conductor born in Blackburn, England. He completed his music undergraduate degree and composition master’s degree at Goldsmiths under the tutelage of Roger Redgate. Niki is currently a practice-led PhD researcher in composition at the University of Leeds supervised by Mic Spencer and Martin Iddon, exploring collision and proximity in his music. He has also received tuition in composition from Chaya Czernowin. His music has been performed, workshopped and recorded in the UK, Europe and Israel by the Ligeti string quartet, Carlos Cordeiro, and Seth Josel amongst others. As well as being a composer, Niki is an active tenor both as a soloist and in professional choirs throughout Lancashire and Yorkshire. He is also on the editorial boards of Leeds Postgraduate Review and CePRA Journal.
Nicholas Ong (Ordinary member, 2023-2025)
Nicholas is a doctoral candidate at the University of Cambridge where his research focuses on critic-composer Valentina Serova (1846–1924) and, more broadly, on women and music in nineteenth-century Russia. His wider research interests include musical nationalism, biography, music criticism, and music in Singapore. He is co-presenter of Crafting Musical Lives, a six-episode podcast which explores the life-writing process of musical figures. Nicholas was involved with the AHRC-funded Midlands Music Research Network (MMRN) as Communications Officer and Podcast Organiser where he hosted the flagship podcast Midlands Music Musings. His music-making experience includes his previous service as a military musician in the Singapore Armed Forces Band and as a current choral scholar in the Choir of Clare College Cambridge.
Niamh Gibbs (Ordinary member, 2022-2024)
Niamh is violinist, pianist, and composer from London. She is currently a research scholarship recipient at the London College of Music, where her work focuses on the use of music and sound design to evoke ‘The Uncanny’ in film. As a violinist, she has performed in recording studios, orchestras, theatre productions and events including the BBC’s 75th Holocaust Memorial Day Ceremony. Her compositions range from soundtracks to original songs which have been featured on radio stations and commended in high profile music competitions. Niamh also works as an Equality Champion at her university, helping advocate for more inclusive policy, environments, and access for marginalised communities in higher education. She was recently awarded an RMA grant for conducting independent research into Inequitable Access in the Music Related Industries, which she presented in part at the 3rd Kyoto Conference in Arts Media and Culture last year.
Student Liaison Officer
Works closely with students who wish to organise RMA-supported study days to develop ideas and plan email@example.com
Research Training Officer
Works with research students and early-career researchers in Music to coordinate research training activities provided by the RMA and to establish collaborative working with other providers of research training.
Dan Elphick is a Lecturer in Musicology at Royal Holloway, University of London. His research and teaching focus on questions of music and politics from the 19th-century to the present, with a particular focus on music of Russia, the Soviet Union, and Poland, as well as issues of music analysis and its role alongside musicology. Dan is a member of the Centre for Russian Music at Goldsmiths, University of London, and sits on the Editorial Board for DSCH, the Shostakovich journal. Dan’s first book, Music Behind the Iron Curtain: Weinberg and his Polish Contemporaries is available from Cambridge University Press. Alongside his research, Dan is passionate about music education at all levels from pre-school to postgraduate research, and has worked with groups including the SMA and RMA on their education and outreach firstname.lastname@example.org