Dr Amanda Villepastour PhD

Dr Amanda Villepastour PhD

Senior Lecturer

+44 (0)29 2087 6226
2.02, 37 Corbett Road

I hold a PhD (ethnomusicology) from SOAS, University of London.

My research interests are concentrated on Yorùbá music in Nigeria and Afro-Cuban religious music.

I have published about bàtá drumming, linguistic studies of speech surrogacy and speech tone in Yorùbá music, religious òrìṣà music, and gender in Nigerian and Cuban religious music.

Until the mid-1990s, I was a keyboardist in the popular music industry, writing, recording and touring with British artists including Boy George, Billy Bragg and The Gang of Four.

Previous academic positions

  • Curator, The Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) in Phoenix Arizona, Bowling Green State University, Ohio
  • Fellow at the Smithsonian Institution

Speaking engagements

Villepastour, A.  2015. Sacred, Scientific and Political Encounters in the Consecration, Conservation, and Patrimony of a Cuban Drum.  Presented at: Musical Instruments and Material Culture, at the Horniman Museum, 2015.

Villepastour, A.  2015. Performing Memory: Reconstructing a Transatlantic Sea Goddess through Song. Presented at: Atlantic Sounds: Ships and Sailortowns, Liverpool University. March 2014.

I am currently supervising PhD candidates researching drumming and gender in Cuba and the kamelengoni harp in Burkina Faso.

At post-graduate level, I teach Doing Ethnomusicology (a methods and theory module) and The World of Music (regional studies through theoretical themes).

I also teach on the undergraduate ethnomusicology courses Music in Human Life, Music in Cross-Cultural Perspective and Ethnomusicology Project.

Employing a British Academy/Leverhulme grant, my current research project is an impact study in Matanzas, Cuba.

My research about the provenance of little-known drum ensemble has facilitated the first production company in the town. I have also been conducting research about Cuban influences in Reunionaise maloya music.

Academic Schools