Staff Profile


Career Summary


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Newcastle, 18/12/2011
  • Associate in Music Australia, Australian Music Examinations Board
  • Bachelor of Education (Music), University of Newcastle, 08/04/1989
  • Master of Music, University of Newcastle, 05/01/2000


Research keywords

  • Breath management of classical voice
  • Considerations of postural alignment for optimal vocal production
  • Developmental strategies for young singers
  • Holistic teaching methods

Research expertise

Much of my research has been performance based. I specialize in Baroque and Classical period performance and have been involved in many performances using period instruments at various baroque pitches and using a number of differing temperaments. As well as early music I have been involved in the presentation of new music including works by Australian composers. Some of the performances have been with The Song Company, some with Cantillation and also at the UoN.

My recently submitted PhD Thesis was an investigation of some aspects of vocal pedagogy centered around the developing singer (aged between 18 -21) and based on the work of voice scientists over the last 30 years. I have presented two papers on aspects of such pedagogy in the UK at the National Early Music Conference (July 2009) and at the Arts Health Symposium at the University of Newcastle in October, 2010.

My further interests are in the symmetrical nature of the body as applied to singing technique and the effect that asymmetry can have on the vocal apparatus and the resultant sound that the singer is able to produce.

Fields of Research

190407Music Performance60
190499Performing Arts And Creative Writing Not Elsewhere Classified20
199999Studies In The Creative Arts And Writing Not Elsewhere Classified20


Administrative expertise

Since 2001 I have been course coordinator for MUSI subjects. From 2005 - 2008 I was Deputy Head of School for the School of Drama, Fine Art and Music (incorporating the Conservatorium). From 2004 - 2008 I served as the School Academic Conduct Officer (SACO) and from 2006 - 2008 as the School Complaints Officer.

I have had experience in the development of new courses for the School of Music and have served on the Faculty Board from 2005 - 2009.


Teaching keywords

  • Musicology
  • Tuition in classical voice
  • Vocal pedagogies and breathing techniques

Teaching expertise

My area of expertise is in the teaching of the classical singing voice. The core business of the University of Newcastle Bachelor of Music course means that the majority of students are between the ages of 18 and 21. At this age the voice is under development and students are required to both develop their musical instrument and their musicality at the same time. I have developed a teaching philosophy which promotes a holistic approach to vocal technique that incorporates a number of technical pedagogies based on the need to offer students a variety of approaches due to the individual nature of the voice and the personality and physicality of each singer.

A further area of expertise is in the delivery of lectures on music history of the Western classical tradition.



For publications that are currently unpublished or in-press, details are shown in italics.

Click on a category title below to expand the list of citations for that specific category.

Journal article (1 outputs)

2013Matthias (Nee Lannen) B, Worrall L, Alston M, Sweetapple A, Marley J, Allan C, 'From soundwaves to brainwaves: investigating the effects of choral singing on recovery from stroke and aphasia', INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF STROKE, 8 49-49 (2013) [E3]

Conference (6 outputs)

2013Matthias B, Worrall L, Alston M, Marley J, Allan C, 'From Soundwaves to BrainWaves: Investigating the effects of choral singing on recovery from stroke and aphasia', INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF STROKE (2013) [E3]
2012Allan C, 'Helping the young soprano bring emotional truth to seventeenth- and eighteenth-century recitative through the use of speech mode', Singing music from 1500 to 1900: Style, technique, knowledge, assertion, experiment. Proceedings of the National Early Music Association International Conference, in association with the University of, York, North Yorkshire (2012) [E1]
2012Lannen B, Worrall L, Alston M, Marley JE, Allan C, 'From Soundwaves to Brainwaves: Investigating the effects of choral singing on stroke and aphasia rehabilitation', International Journal of Stroke, Darling Harbour, Sydney (2012) [E3]
2012Allan C, Carson SL, 'Finding the synergies: Adapting a curriculum to encompass classical and contemporary singing in a university vocal techniques class', Performer's Voice 2nd Symposium "Horizons Crossing Boundaries", Singapore (2012) [E3]

Co-authors: SUSAN CARSON

2012White C, Cook IR, Allan C, 'My self, then my self: The ephemeral performer in 'the breathing space projects'', Performer's Voice' 2nd Symposium, Singapore (2012) [E3]

Co-authors: IAN COOK

2010Allan C, 'The Singer's Dilemma: Perceptual problems facing the developing classical singer', ArtsHealth Symposium - Space and Wellbeing, Newcastle, NSW (2010) [E3]
Show 3 more

Creative Work (13 outputs)

2015Allan C, Walker S, Modern Masterpieces, University of Newcastle Great Hall (2015)
2015Walker SKA, Allan C, Performance of Sally Walker's amalgamation of the orchestral flute and violin/piano version violin part of Bartok's "Rumanian Dances" for flute/piccolo (Sally Walker) and piano (Christopher Allan)., Great Hall, University of Newcastle, Newcastle (2015)

Co-authors: SALLY WALKER

2013Allan C, Encore: Selected works for mixed voice choir, ChristChurch Cathedral, Newcastle, Sydney (2013) [J1]
2013Halton R, Allan C, Hoadley B, Walker S, Concert for a New Era: Monody by Claudio Saracini (1624); Vivaldi, Sonata for flute, bassoon, and basso continuo Christopher Allan (baritone); Sally Walker (flute); Ben Hoadley (bassoon); Rosalind Halton (harpsichord, editor of Saracini pieces), Harold Lobb Concert Hall, Newcastle, Newcastle (2013) [J2]


2013Walker SKA, Allan C, Coco Nelgatti "El Cronopio" performed by Sally Walker, flute and Christopher Allan, piano, Harold Lobb Concert Hall, Newcastle Conservatorium of Music, Newcastle, NSW, Australia (2013) [J2]

Co-authors: SALLY WALKER

2013Allan C, XII Festival Internationale Di Music E Arte Sacra, Basilica of St Ignatious Loyola, Rome, Italy, Rome, Italy (2013) [J2]
2012Walker S, Allan C, Matthias P, At lunch Soul Food. Sally Walker - flute, Christopher Allan - baritone, Philip Matthias - organ. Works by J.S. Bach, Gluck, Mozart., Harold Lobb Concert Hall, Newcastle Conservatorium of Music, Newcastle, NSW, Australia (2012)
2012Allan C, Rhythms of One World - Festival of Voice, United Nations Friendship Ambassadors, Merkin Concert Hall, Kaufmann Centre, New York. USA (2012)
2012Allan C, Serenade for Strings. Includes 'Let Us Garlands Bring' a cycle of songs for Baritone and String Orchestra., ChristChurch Cathedral, Newcastle (2012)
2011Allan C, Dicolesian Opera/Stage work by Henry Purcell, Verbruggen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium of Music (2011)
2011Walker SKA, Scott-Mitchell, Cook I, Ricci G, Allan C, A recital of the music and reading of letters of Ludwig van Beethoven, celebrating the installation of Beethoven┬┐s Death Mask, generously donated to the Conservatorium by Sir William Bowmore MBE AO, Harold Lobb Concert Hall, Newcastle Conservatorium of Music, Newcastle, NSW (2011)
2011Allan C, L'Anima Del Filosofo, Angel Place Recital Centre, Sydney (2011)
2002Spiers CJ, Smith GM, Allan C, Concert September 16th Colin Spiers (Piano) Greg Smith (Piano) Christopher Allan (Baritone), Ellicott - Variations on a Bach Chorale (Spiers/Smith), Woods - Satin Sounds (Spiers/Allan), Newcastle Conservatorium, Newcastle Conservatorium (2002) [J2]

Co-authors: COLIN SPIERS

Show 10 more

Grants and Funding


Number of grants1
Total funding$12,551

- Indicates that the researcher may be seeking students for this project.

Click on a grant title below to expand the full details for that specific grant.

2013 (1 grants)

Brainwaves: The impact of choral singing on community dwelling stroke survivors$12,551
Funding Body: National Stroke Foundation

Project Team
Conjoint Professor John Marley, Mrs Bernadette Matthias, Doctor Christopher Allan, Professor Linda Worrall
Research GrantInvestigator
Total AmountFunding StartFunding Finish

Research Supervision

Number of current supervisions6
Total current UoN Masters EFTSL1.85
Total current UoN PhD EFTSL0.9

For supervisions undertaken at an institution other that the University of Newcastle, the institution name is listed below the program name.

Current Supervision

ProgramSupervisor TypeResearch Title
20152017M Philosophy (Music)Principal SupervisorExtreme Vocal Techniques in Contemporary Heavy Music
20152017M Philosophy (Music)Principal SupervisorWhat Sweeter Music Can We Bring? The Formation, Importance and Preservation of Community Choral Groups and the Strive for Musical Excellence.
20152017M Philosophy (Music)Co-SupervisorSing You Up My Country: Developing and Defining Synergies Between Australian Compositions and the Voices and Skills of High School Choirs
20142018M Philosophy (Music)Co-SupervisorTeaching Multiple Genres of Voice: An Investigation of Current Practice in Australian Tertiary Music Education
20132017PhD (Music)Principal SupervisorClassical Voice and the Microphone
20102014PhD (Medicine)Co-SupervisorThe effect of choral singing on the health and quality of life of community-dwelling stroke survivors and their carers

Past Supervision

YearProgramSupervisor TypeResearch Title
2013M Philosophy (Music)Co-SupervisorPerformance Fitness: Physiological Benefits of Aerobic Exercise for Performing Singers

Dr Christopher Allan

Work Phone(02) 4921 8920
Fax(02) 4921 8958
PositionSenior Lecturer
School of Creative Arts
Faculty of Education and Arts
The University of Newcastle, Australia
Focus AreaMusic
The Conservatorium of Music,
The Conservatorium
Cnr Laman and Auckland Street
Newcastle NSW 2300