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Dr Jerry Yue Zhuo BSc (Hons), MSc (LSE), MA, PhD (Cardiff), AFHEA

Dr Jerry Yue Zhuo

BSc (Hons), MSc (LSE), MA, PhD (Cardiff), AFHEA

Lecturer in Composition

School of Music

Room 1.03, 33-37 Corbett Road, Cathays, Cardiff, CF10 3EB


My name is 卓越 (Zhuó Yuè), aka. Jerry Zhuo. I am an active composer, performer and conductor with a rising reputation in Wales and my hometown Xiamen, China.

Having grown up in an increasingly postmodern society in China, I produce works that question the authenticity of personal identity. I often employ a philosophical approach in organising musical structure, taking inspiration from my experience in electroacoustic performance, improvisation, and audience engagement. Based on this, I have recently started a new compositional and musicological research project in Nan-yin, a type of music from my native Min-nan Chinese (or Hokkien) culture.

Audiences have described my compositional outcomes as ‘evocative’ and ‘deeply personal’. I have been selected to participate in music festivals and composition projects worldwide, including Tŷ Cerdd, Vale of Glamorgan Festival, Valencia International Performance Festival, impuls (2019 and 2021) and Chen Qigang Music Academy.

As a conductor and promoter of contemporary music and arts, I have become increasingly recognised in Xiamen, China, for which I have received several press interviews, including one by the China Daily. I am currently the co-conductor of the award-winning Xiamen Foreign Language School Orchestra and a resident artist of Three Shadows Xiamen Photography Art Centre.


Education and qualifications

  • 2022: PhD Music (Composition), Cardiff University, UK
  • 2020: AFHEA (Higher Education Academy) with Distinction
  • 2017: MA Music (Composition) with Distinction, Cardiff University, UK
  • 2016: MSc International Management (IMEX), London School of Economics and Political Science, UK
  • 2015: BSc Hons Economics, University of Bath, UK

Honours and awards

  • 2021: 1st prize, String Orchestra Category, Xiamen Middle and Primary School Arts Exhibition, China (conducting)
  • 2021: 1st prize, Symphonic Winds Category, Xiamen Middle and Primary School Arts Exhibition, China (conducting)
  • 2021: 1st prize, Instrumental Music Category, Fujian Provincial Music and Dance Festival, China (conducting)
  • 2021: 2nd prize for Original Choral Compositions and Excellent Ensemble Leader, Chongqing Universities Arts Exhibition (provincial level), China
  • 2020: Graduate Tutor of the Year Award, Cardiff University, UK
  • 2020: Selected participant of Ty Cerdd 'CoDI Sound' and 'CoDI Mentor' projects with grants
  • 2017–2020: Full Studentship, Cardiff University School of Music, UK
  • 2016: International Studentship, Cardiff University College of AHSS, UK
  • 2015: Outstanding Alumni, Xiamen Foreign Language School, China

Academic positions

  • 2021–present: Lecturer in Composition, Cardiff University School of Music, UK
  • 2017–2019: A-Level Economics Teacher (part-time), St John's College Cardiff, UK

Speaking engagements

  • Postgraduate Forum, Cardiff University, UK (27 April 2021). Composer presentation: ‘Experiencing Identity, Forming the Poetic Space’.
  • Three Shadows Xiamen Photography Art Centre, China (18 April 2021). Public lecture: ‘The Fluxus Movement and Contemporary Music After 1960s’.
  • BFE-RMA Research Students’ Conference, Cambridge, UK (14 January 2021). Video presentation and panel: ‘Politics of Naming COVID-19: A Creative Response’.
  • ‘Onto 2021: The Past, (Pandemic) Present, and Future of Arts and Art Education’ Conference, University College London, UK (3 January 2021). Video presentation and panel: ‘Remote Music Education and Performance.’
  • Princess Galyani Vadhana Institute of Music International Symposium, Bangkok, Thailand (25 August 2020). Video presentation and panel: ‘Politics of Naming COVID-19: A Creative Response’.
  • St Petersburg International Music Festival ‘’, Russia (28 May 2020). Composer presentation: ‘The Identity Forming Process of a Composer’.
  • Valencia International Performance Festival, Spain (14 July 2019). Composer presentation: ‘Vocalisation and Chinese Intonation’.
  • Delian Academy for New Music, Greece (11 June 2019). Symposium presentation: ‘Vocalisation and Chinese Intonation’.
  • Xiamen University College of Art, China, (23 June 2019). Symposium presentation: ‘Composing Contemporary Music’.
  • Breaking Boundary Research Day, Cardiff, UK (19 March 2019). Conference presentation: ‘Beyond Chineseness: Self-Identity in Musical Composition’.
  • PGR Study Day, Cardiff University, UK (27 January 2019). Conference presentation: ‘Into Door Gods: Familiarising the Unfamiliar Home’.
  • ‘Synthetis’ International Summer Course for Composers, Poland (2nd August 2018). Composer presentation: ‘Improvisation and “Games” in Compositions’.
  • Xiamen Foreign Language School Professional Elite TED-Talk, China (31 May 2018). Public lecture: ‘“Listen…” — Deep Listening and Improvisation’.

Committees and reviewing

  • 2021: Session Chair and Session Panel Leader, BFE-RMA Research Students’ Conference, Cambridge, UK
  • 2019: Conference Lead Organiser, PGR Study Day, Cardiff University, UK
  • 2019: Music Education Advisor, Phuket Taihua School, Thailand
  • 2018: Concert Co-organiser, Contemporary Music for All (CoMA) Festival, Cardiff, UK


Undergraduate Teaching:

  • Composition 1A (module leader)
  • Composition 3 (final year major composition project supervision)
  • Elements of Tonal Music (seminars)
  • Studio Techniques (tutorials, second and final years)

Postgraduate Teaching:

  • Studio Techniques (module leader)
  • Ensemble (module leader)
  • Contributes to specialist classes in the Research Skills modules

International Teaching:

  • 'Becoming an International Musician: Research and Communication on the Global Stage' (course leader)
  • Work as the international liaison for the School of Music
  • Facilitate communication with international students

Current Projects

  • TimeArt Academy 2022, with the topic subject 'Forgotten Voices'. The project explores the connection between contemporary music and different traditions. The premiere of the resulting composition will happen in September 2022 at Tunghai University, Taiwan.
  • 'Game of Sounds and Signs: Exploring the Three-Cornered Network of Interactions Between the Composer, Conductor and Singers', a conference paper to be presented at Spheres of Singing Interdisciplinary Conference (November 2022, University of Glasgow).

Recent Research Outcome

  • Dream: Pavilion by the Water (2020-2) for mezzo-soprano and piano (9'). This piece was presented under the same title at the 12th Biennial Internation Conference on Music Since 1900 (Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, July 2022).
  • 'Who Do You Think You Are?' concert of original works, commissioned by Three Shadows Xiamen Photography Arts Centre, China in 2021. This concert features improvisation, Fluxus, audience participation, electroacoustic, and audio-visual elements, including the opening piece Sound of Luck (2021) and The Way to Fly (2021).

Research Interest

Compositional process and ideology:

  • 'Poetic space' — non-linear musical structure
  • 'Dramatic form' and theatricality in music and performance arts

Identity expression in music and arts:

  • the 'identity sampling process' — the perception and construction of 'self' in music
  • Chineseness — the act of self-stereotype in music and arts
  • Languages, the translation of and the politics of, including research in Min-nan dialect

Performance, improvisation, and collaborations:

  • The New Discipline: the identity of a composer-performer in musical works
  • The design of improvisation using notated, graphic, and text scores
  • Relationships involved in improvisation among the composer, conductor, performers, and audience

Electroacoustic and computer music:

  • Use of electronics and digital devices such as tapes, synthesisers, pre-recorded video, smartphones and computer programmes (e.g. Max/MSP, Ableton Live)

Ethnomusicology-inspired composition:

  • Nan-yin (南音) — its history and present and how it can be integrated into contemporary composing.