Dr Benjamin Wolf

Senior Lecturer

Professional Biography

Benjamin Wolf completed his PhD at the Music Department of Royal Holloway, University of London. He currently lectures at Regent's University London, having previously worked as Senior Associate Teacher in the Music Department of Bristol University and as a visiting lecturer at Royal Holloway. His research focuses on the institutional and social contexts for music in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

He has given papers on various individual composers and institutions, most recently at the International Conference on Analysing Popular Music (POPMAC) and the conference of the North American British Music Studies Association (NABMSA). A study of the SPNM was published in the Musical Times of December 2013, and a book chapter concerning the institutional structure of the British symphony orchestra will shortly be published by Oxford University Press. He has also worked as Research Assistant for a Royal Holloway project examining the use of music to accompany early silent films, and was one of the organisers of the IMR’s ‘Music in Britain’ conference in 2013.

He has given talks on British cultural policy, and has written articles for the Financial Times and other non-academic journals. Outside the realms of academia, he is an active performer and composer, specialising particularly in Jewish classical music. He has performed at many of London's principal concert venues, including the South Bank Centre and Westminster Abbey, as well as appearing on the BBC and touring internationally. Within Regent’s University he is responsible for the university’s Music Society and Choir, and works on singing with the students of RSDFM.


  • PhD, Music, Royal Holloway (UL), 2010
  • InSTIL (Certificate in Skills of Teaching to Inspire Learning – postgraduate teaching qualification), Royal Hollloway, 2008
  • MMus, Music, King's College London, 2005
  • PG Diploma, Conducting/Composition, Trinity College of Music, 2001
  • BA, Classics, University College, Oxford, 2000

Relevant Past Employment

  • 2011 – current, Lecturer in Music, Regent's University London, London
  • 2011 – 2013 Senior Associate Teacher, Music Department, Bristol University
  • 2011 – ­2012 Visiting Lecturer, Royal Holloway, UL
  • 2011 – current, Senior Associate Teacher, Music Department, Bristol University
  • 2006 – current, Choirmaster, Belsize Square Synagogue
  • 2010 – current, Conductor, Royal Free Music Society
  • 2003 – current, Musical Director, The Zemel Choir
  • 2001 – current, Conductor, The Wallace Ensemble
  • 2004 – 2012, Conductor, Rushmoor Choir
  • 2009 – 2011, Lecturer on British Cultural Policy, Sinobridge Consulting
  • 2007 – 2011, Visiting Lecturer, Tutorial and Marking Assistant, Royal Holloway
  • 2011, Research Assistant, Film Fitting and Silent Film Music Project, Royal Holloway, UL


  • Wolf, B. (2007). Review of Christopher Fifield, Ibbs and Tillett: The Rise and Fall of a Musical Empire, published in Music and Letters 88/1, 161-163.
  • Wolf, B. (2013), ‘The SPNM 1943 – 1975: a retrospective’, published in The MusicalTimes 154/1925 (Winter 2013), 47 – 66

Other Outputs

  • Interview with Alexander Bermange, The Jewish Chronicle, June 2008
  • ‘Not Just Midsummer Madness', The Financial Times (Weekend), July 1st 2006
  • ‘Few Call for New Tunes', The Financial Times (Weekend), September 27th 2003
  • Review of Concert at the Purcell Room, March 12th 2003, published in The Pianola Journal (March 2003).

Various compositions:

  • ‘Cocaine Overture’ and ‘Pictures from Pallant’ for the Chichester Festival 2013 and 2014
  • Close Harmony arrangements (Male Voice and SATB): most recently Sephardi folksong arrangements (Ramsgate Montefiore Heritage Day 2014); various others 2008 - 2013
  • Jewish Choral: most recently ‘Baruch Haba’ (Belsize Square 2014); various others since 2005
  • Orchestral: Most recently orchestrations of secular works by Louis Lewandowski (2013); L'Chaim for piano and orchestra (JMI Millennium Award 2003); Etz Chayim (Tree of Life) Cello Concerto, commissioned for 70th anniversary of Belsize Square Synagogue (2009).
  • Ancient Greek Settings: Song of Demodocus, Ekon Festival of Greek Music (2009); Siren Song (commissioned 2007)
  • Incidental Music: Canaries Sometimes Sing (King's Head, Islington, 2003); Goblin Market (Southwark Playhouse 2005)

Conference Papers Given

  • Professional Capital, The BBC and ‘Poor Old English Opera’ – Examining the Life of Alick Maclean (NABMSA 2014)
  • Ewan MacColl, Authenticity and ‘The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face’ (POPMAC 2013)
  • Tippett’s ‘King Priam’, the Royal Opera House and the Concept of ‘Prestige Opera’ (NABMSA 2012)
  • British Cultural Policy and the Response to Totalitarianism (King’s College London 2012)
  • Just too bourgeois? Light music, Academia and the BBC (RMA Conference 2010)
  • The Symphony Orchestra and Musical Vitality (IMR Conference 2010)
  • Chasing Your Tail (Opera, Ballet and the Arts Council) (RMA Research Students' Conference, 2009)
  • The Arts Council and Modernist Music (RMA Study Day, April 2008)
  • Light or Wrong (Musical Categories in early twentieth-century London)
    (Royal Holloway Postgraduate Research Forum)
  • Fighting for New Music – the Committee for the Promotion of New Music in the 1940s (Royal Holloway Postgraduate Study Day)

Research Interests

  • Social and political history of music; historiography; genre and definitions of genre

Professional Affiliation(s)/Accreditation

  • (2016) Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

Teaching & Course Development

  • Regent's College: Development and Delivery of four courses (Introduction to Music Appreciation, Contemporary Music in London, Religion in the Arts, History of Rock & Roll)
  • Regent's College: Development and Delivery of two courses (Introduction to Music Appreciation and Contemporary Music in London)
  • Bristol University: Development and Delivery of first-year History of Music Course; Development and Delivery of split-level (second/third-year undergraduate) courses (Intersections of Elite and Popular Music 1850 – 1920; Promoting the Avant-Garde 1930 – 1980); First-Year Undergraduate Tutorials
  • Royal Holloway: Development and Delivery of first-year History of Music course; Development and Delivery of first-year course (Introduction to Historical Musicology)