Dr Robert Demaine
Research Associate



After graduating in 1974 with a BA in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Sheffield followed by a period of study at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Robert Demaine embarked on a career in computing, which led him in 1983 to the University of York. Here he rose to a senior management position within IT Services as Head of Infrastructure, before retiring in late 2010.

In parallel with his professional career Robert has maintained an active interest in music and music history, both as performer and researcher.  In 1987 he and the flautist Edwina Smith formed Innocent Diversion, a period instrument duo for flute and guitar, playing baroque and 19th century repertoire.  His arrangement for this instrumental combination of Goulding’s Select Collection of Twelve Favourite Country Dances for the Year 1807 was later published.

In 2001 he received his doctorate from the University of York for his thesis entitled “Individual and Institution in the Musical Life of Leeds 1900-1914”.  He has subsequently given invited lectures on musical topics to the Yorkshire Architectural and York Archaeological Society (YAYAS), the Leeds Philosophical and Literary Society, and the Thoresby Society, and published a study of the career of the violinist John White in Ashgate’s volume Music in the British Provinces 1690-1914 (2007).

His primary area of research is music and locality, with particular emphasis on Leeds and Yorkshire. Other areas of scholarly interest include musical patronage from the 18th century onwards, and the amateur musician at home and as a member of musical societies.


Full publications list

  • Twelve Country Dances, arranged for flute and guitar by Robert Demaine (York: Guitar in Ensemble, 1988). [An arrangement of Goulding’s Select Collection of Twelve Favourite Country Dances for the Year 1807]
  • ‘Mr White, of Leeds’ in Music in the British Provinces 1690-1914, ed. Rachel Cowgill and Peter Holman (Aldershot: Ashgate 2007), 183-193.

Contact details

Dr Robert Demaine
Research Associate
Department of Music
University of York
YO10 5DD