Universiteit Leiden

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Academy of Creative and Performing Arts

The arts and science: for years, they were seen as opposite extremes. One calls on emotion and the other on reason. The Academy of Creative and Performing Arts (ACPA) proves that nothing could be further from the truth. ACPA is where the knowledge and expertise of Leiden University and the University of the Arts The Hague, with its world-famous Royal Conservatoire and Royal Academy of Art, are brought together.

Art as a mirror

The arts reflect on the meaning and impact of societal developments and new technologies. They get us thinking about political and ethical implications. This is valuable, and our partners in society can see this too. ACPA works together with the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) and the Municipality of Leiden, for instance.

Research is being conducted at ACPA into issues such as the impact of noise in public spaces. How should a municipality deal with such noise? How can sound art make public spaces more coherent? With an art project with a solid scientific grounding, one researcher is demonstrating in various public spaces, such as a tunnel, how sound and music can change your perception of the environment.

‘In terms of its research quality, ACPA and its associated PhD programmes can confidently be said to be among the most influential contributors worldwide to the highly specialised field of artistic research.’

Assessment Report Academy of Creative and Performing Arts, Peer Review 2012 – 2017

Musicians, artists, designers

Almost all bachelor’s and master’s students, lecturers, PhD candidates and professors at ACPA are themselves musicians, artists or designers. This is one of the basic principles at ACPA. Knowledge of the practice is crucial to research. At no other Dutch university are the links between theory and practice as strong as in Leiden and The Hague.

​​​​​​​Best of both worlds

At ACPA, musicians, artists and designers conduct research into their own artistic practice. These artist-researchers study their own practice, thus generating new insights and methods. They also work on the theoretical framework of their work, which often results in new artworks again. The aim of their artistic research is to deepen and broaden their vision of their own artistic practice.

Research at ACPA is relevant to both artistic practice – the research finds its way to concerts and exhibitions – and academia. At PhD ceremonies, the research findings are always conveyed through both a thesis and an artistic presentation, performance and the like.

Students at ACPA also gain practical experience. Students from Leiden can follow electives at the Royal Conservatoire or the Royal Academy of the Art The Hague, for instance. And in Leiden you can study law, while also spending three years studying the cello in The Hague.

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