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The following postgraduate students have completed their studies and will receive their degrees on 22 May (Doctoral) and 29 May (Masters).

Wynand de VilliersWynand de Villiers
PhD in Music


Inner hearing as experienced by professional pianists: a phenomenology

Promotor: Prof Waldo Weyer

The purpose of his qualitative study was to explore how professional pianists experience their inner hearing. He determined that in addition to professional pianists’ ideal mental sound images — exactly what they intend their playing to sound like — they also experience mental visual, kinaesthetic and tactile images of the applicable playing techniques which they associate with their ideal mental sound images. All these mental images interconnect with each other as well as with the pianists’ positive affective experience of their inner hearing, to ultimately facilitate their pianism.



Itumeleng MaphakelaItumeleng Maphakela
MMus in Musicology


The experience of learning wind ensemble music through a Dalcroze-inspired approach: an interpretative phenomenological analysis

Supervisor: Dr Albi Odendaal

This interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) aimed to understand the meaning that the members of the North-West University (NWU) Symphonic Wind Ensemble ascribed to their experiences in incorporating a Dalcroze-inspired approach in their wind band rehearsals. The data analysis process revealed that the participants found their musical awareness heightened by the approach. They also found the approach to be a socially beneficial and enjoyable experience, and ultimately found that it made their music learning experience easier.



Lebona SelloLebona Sello
MMus in Musicology


A close reading of the opera Mandela trilogy, with a special focus on the performance of Mandela’s masculinities

Supervisor: Dr Chris van Rhyn

This study explores the mediation of socio-political and life realities, and the performance of Nelson Mandela’s masculinities in the opera Mandela trilogy and what that says about the function and nature of contemporary opera in the current socio-political contexts in South Africa. It is suggested that the combination of musical platforms from which Mandela’s story was told, was necessary in sketching the almost complete picture of him we encounter in the opera.



Yvonne SeweloYvonne Sewelo
MMus in Musicology


The contribution of participating in the NCF to the musical development of the Serenaders

Supervisor: Prof Hetta Potgieter

This dissertation focused on exploring how participating in the National Choir Festival (NCF) contributed to the musical development of the Serenaders. From the collected data, specific themes emerged: growing, knowing, valuing and thinking. Results indicated that choir singing functioned as a platform for music teaching and learning.



Marguerite van WykMarguerite van Wyk
MMus in Performance

3 concert programmes + mini-dissertation:

The use of bel canto techniques to develop healthy vocal techniques in adolescent singers who belt

Supervisor: Prof Santisa Viljoen

The purpose of this conceptual study is to explain how bel canto techniques might be used to develop healthy vocal techniques in adolescents who want to belt. The research report argues that adolescents who want to perform contemporary commercial music using the belting technique might benefit from first mastering the breathing process, as well as the vowel formation used in bel canto. Once they have an understanding of how it feels to sing in a way that feels more natural, they can begin to attempt the belting technique, which requires more muscular activity.