1pm | Friday 3 December
Melbourne Recital Centre


What actually happens inside your head when you improvise or witness a mind-blowing solo? Experts from the Clinical and Music Neuroscience Lab (University of Melbourne) discuss fascinating research that explores the relationship between our brains, music and improvisation.

Presented in partnership with the Clinical and Music Neuroscience Lab (University of Melbourne)

This event is included in the MIJF Congress weekend pass. Click below to purchase tickets.

Meet the Panellists

Paul Barclay – Moderator, Presenter ABC Radio National 

Paul Barclay is a Walkley Award winning journalist and broadcaster with ABC Radio National.
Paul has produced, and presented countless stories, and hosted a variety of programs, across all ABC radio networks. He currently presents and produces Big Ideas, a program that explores what every-day Australians and expert guests think about a range of diverse topics, from international politics to the price of eggs.

Professor Sarah Wilson 

Professor Sarah Wilson is the Pro Vice-Chancellor, Student Life at the University of Melbourne, a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences (FAHMS), and a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia (FASSA). She has pioneered music neuroscience research in Australia and was founding Director of Music Mind & Wellbeing, an interdisciplinary initiative linking neuroscience with music and emotional and social wellbeing, fostering research spanning music, science, health and education. Sarah is Chair of the ILAE Diagnostic Methods Commission and previous Chair of the ILAE Neuropsychology Task Force. In the field of Clinical Neuropsychology, Sarah is currently listed in the top 10 most cited researchers on Google Scholar. Before taking up the role of PVC Student Life in April 2021, Sarah was the Head of School, Psychological Sciences in the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences at the University of Melbourne.

Dr. Tim Willis 

Tim is a professional performing musician based in Melbourne and currently teaches at the Australian Institute of Music in Melbourne. He has been an active contributor to the Melbourne jazz scene since moving from France in 2009 and is also an active environmental campaigner. In 2017 Tim was awarded a PhD in music performance from Monash University. His PhD research explored the ways in which professional improvising musicians engage in mental practice and develop aural skills that permit them to improvise in their minds while away from their given instruments.

In 2013 Tim received the PBS106.7 Young Elder of Jazz Commission and showcased new work at the 2013 Melbourne International Jazz Festival. He has also performed at the Vannes International Jazz Festival (Festival Jazz a Vannes) and more recently recorded and performed live the soundtrack to the acclaimed feature length documentary, Censored by Sari Braithwaite.

Dr. Margaret Osborne

A Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Music at Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences, Margaret’s desire to support the mental and physical health needs of artists to achieve optimal performance and sustainable careers has seen her develop new curricula in performance psychology. She serves as an Associate Editor for Frontiers in Psychology Performance Science, President of the Australian Society for Performing Arts Healthcare, and maintains a consulting psychology practice. She is notable for research in music performance anxiety. Her research explores how learning and performance can be improved using self-regulated learning and emotion regulation skills, elucidating best-practice methods to build confidence, health and resilience in order to maximise performance potential in music and other performing arts, sports, public speaking and academic disciplines.