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Mr Phil Burnett

Mr Phil Burnett

Mr Phil Burnett

Editorial Assistant

Area of research

Music on Mission Stations in the Cape Colony, 1855-1900

Victoria Rooms,
Queens Road, Clifton BS8 1SA
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My PhD research is on the role of Music in the work of missionaries working in the eastern Cape Colony in the second half of the nineteenth century. I am interested in the way missionaries used Music to attract, convert, to teach, and to establish identity and create new social and religious boundaries, as they worked to convert the indigenous amaXhosa.  

I am interested in the interaction between indigenous musical styles and cultures with those that the missionaries introduced. In particular, I am looking at the ways in which people think about their own musical culture and that of other societies, and the processes which lead to the formulation of these ideas.


I was born in Cape Town, South Africa, where I received my school education. My undergraduate education was at Rhodes Univesrity, Grahamstown, where I received a Bachelor of Arts (Legal Theory and German), a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Music and Musicology, and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education. Upon completion of my PGCE I was appointed to the staff of the Music Department at Kingswood College. At Kingswood I was part of a busy department and had responsiblity for teaching subject and class music, and training the school choirs. Concurrently I was director of the Rhodes University Chamber Choir. In 2009 I resigned both positions and moved to the UK, teaching initially in London, before moving to Bristol where I studied for an MA in Music at the University of Bristol, graduating in 2011 with Distinction. After a year off (working at Royal Mail) I returned to the University of Bristol, and am currently an MLitt candidate. My research is co-supervised by Professor Robert Bickers (History) and Dr Emma Hornby (Music).


Foundation Music Theory

First Tutoring



Department of Music

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