No photo of Tina K. Ramnarine

Tina K. Ramnarine, FBA


  • TW20 0EX

Personal profile

Research interests



Tina K. Ramnarine is a musician, writer and global cultural explorer. Her interdisciplinary research concerns music in global histories and arts responses to contemporary global challenges. With experience in both music and anthropology, she is interested in what music researchers can contribute to issues such as environmentalism (especially climate change and cross-species creativities in fragile ecosystems), globalisation, migration, cultural heritages and identity politics. She has multi-sited ethnographic experience (including Nordic countries, the European Arctic, Caribbean, India and its Diaspora, Britain) and broad interests in transnationalism, decolonising scholarship and postcolonial studies. 


Publications include the books Creating Their Own Space: The Development of an Indian-Caribbean Musical Tradition (University of West Indies Press, 2001), Ilmatar's Inspirations: Nationalism, Globalization, and the Changing Soundscapes of Finnish Folk Music (Chicago University Press, 2003), Beautiful Cosmos: Performance and Belonging in the Caribbean Diaspora (Pluto Press, 2007), and the edited volumes Musical Performance in the Diaspora (Routledge, 2007) and Dance, Music and Cultures of Decolonisation in the Indian Diaspora (Routledge, 2019, first published as a special issue of the journal South Asian Diaspora). Research publications include articles on the Disney film Frozen, the Sámi film, Pathfinder and the Bollywood films Om Shanti Om and Dulha Mil Gaya.


She researched orchestras around the world in terms of civil society, European Integration and education, postcolonial politics and digital technologies as an Associate Director of the AHRC Centre for Musical Performance as Creative Practice. This research was based on professional experiences as an orchestral musician and it resulted in the edited volume Global Perspectives on Orchestras: Collective Creativity and Social Agency (Oxford University Press, 2018). She contributed practice-based and theoretical insights on the social relevance of orchestras in the 21st century within the Maastricht Centre for the Innovation of Classical Music, explored orchestras in relation to conflict and democratic politics in Finland after 1917 for the volume Finding Democracy in Music, and discussed Beethoven as a global figure and an orchestral musician for the Beethoven 250 celebrations in Bonn. Her book Jean Sibelius's Violin Concerto (Oxford University Press, 2020) examines violin performing traditions, histories of musical transmission, and virtuosity (with an emphasis on gender equality and environment).


She is a Fellow of the British Academy and an international advisory board member of: the Maastricht Centre for the Innovation of Classical Music, the CWM and EZJM (Universities of Hildesheim and Hanover), African Musicology Online, and the Finnish Yearbook of Ethnomusicology. She is a former Chair of the British Forum for Ethnomusicology, co-editor of Ethnomusicology Forum, UK Representative on the International Council for Traditions of Music and Dance, Associate Fellow of the Institute for the Study of the Americas, and member of the Society for Ethnomusicology's Board of Directors (USA) and of the UK QAA benchmarking panel for Anthropology. She has been involved in the organisation and programming of international conferences, including the joint meeting of three music societies - one of the largest musicological gatherings held in the USA.


Activities in public engagement include creating and directing an award-winning artistic-community-pedagogy project in Northern Ireland, 'Musical Performance as Social Practice', and presenting research talks at festivals such as Sounds New Music Festival 'Baltic+' (UK); Wassermusik Festival (Germany); Chutney Currents: Music, Migration, and Diaspora (USA); Remembered Rhythms: Music and Diaspora of India Festival (India); Diaspora Music Village Festival (UK); and for the museum exhibition, Inde du Nord: Gloire des Princes, louanges des Dieux (France). Performance readings from a co-edited anthology of creative writing: We Mark Your Memory (with contributions from Africa, the Americas, the Pacific, South Asia and the U.K) were given at the Commonwealth's People's Forum 2018 (on civil society approaches to inclusivity, justice and accountability). 


She is active in pedagogy and is the Director for Postgraduate Research Education within the School of Performing and Digital Arts, as well as the Postgraduate Research Lead for Music. She has supervised doctoral projects on a wide range of topics, including music in Arctic, Caribbean, Congolese, Greek, Indian, Indonesian, South African, Ugandan, UK, and Vietnamese contexts. Tina K. Ramnarine has been invited to share her research insights by giving talks, public lectures and keynote conference papers internationally.




Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action