Associate Professor in Music, Sound and Culture

Dr D Ferrett is Associate Professor of Music, Sound and Culture and the Research Lead for the Academy of Music and Theatre Arts (AMATA). She is a theorist publishing in sound and music studies, and a vocalist with a musical background based in improv, post-punk, noise pop and blues music. D currently leads the BA (Hons) Popular Music and the BA (Hons) Music degrees as well as teaches across the undergraduate programmes with a modular focus on music, culture, reality-virtuality and futurist philosophy. 

D develops work that investigates the relationships between categories of human and the non-human, gender, technology, mythology and the environment primarily through voice and sound (as practice and theory) drawing from an interdisciplinary approach that engages voice studies, sound studies, new materialism, feminism, critical musicology, literature studies and ecocriticism.

D is the author of Dark Sound: Feminine Voices in Sonic Shadow (Bloomsbury, 2020), a monograph that critically analyses misogyny and racism within music and sound discourse as it manifests in the deployment of dark feminine archetypes and stereotypes. In the book and in work that has followed, D’s research proposes that philosophy and radical ideas about being, space and time can be derived through deep listening to music and sound and its imaginative potential; she is particularly interested in music and sound that embodies ‘dark’ themes and speaks of and to the entanglement of individual lived experience and political, cultural and environmental crisis.  

Prior to Falmouth, D was an active participant in the Leeds DIY music scene and studied media, music and cultural studies, graduating with a PhD from the University of Leeds where she taught and edited the international peer-review journal parallax. Since arriving at Falmouth University, D has edited the IASPM journal, joined the first Royal Musical Academy Popular Music Study Group and is actively engaged in developing EDI policy within the university, including as Chair of the Gender and Equality Working Group, and, more recently, as part of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Group.

D is currently working on two intersecting projects that pertain to Cornwall: ‘Dark Kernow’ - as derived from Dark Sound and exploring the relationship between gender-mythology-environment in terms of Cornwall; Voices on the Edge: Women+ and the Cornish Music and Sound Ecology - a project that seeks to amplify and promote women and gender expansive music and sound-makers who are based in Cornwall.

Contact details

Telephone 01326 255911



Year Qualification Awarding body
2010 PhD The University of Leeds
2005 MA Cultural Studies The University of Leeds
2003 BA (Hons) Media and Popular Culture Leeds Metropolitan University
1999 BTEC ND in Media and Music Leeds College of Technology

Honors and awards

Year Description
2014 FXU Innovative Teaching Award
2006 AHRC Full Funding Scholarship Award for PhD Research
2005 AHRC Full Funding Scholarship Award for MA Study
2003 Best Dissertation Award
2001 Young Blues Musician of the Year Award

Research Interests

Research interests and expertise

My research interests develop through dark sound, a concept-practice hybrid that allows me to explore power relationships, oppression and subjugation as well as the potential of sound to create new ways of thinking and being. Methodologically, I aim to engage with deep listening, close reading, practice, and discourse analysis to reveal the connections between gender, mythology and the environment as manifest in voice and sound. 

I have expertise in sound studies, critical and popular musicology, voice studies, cultural studies, critical theory, philosophy, feminism, gender studies, acoustic ecology, film studies and ecocriticism.

My current research topics are:

  • Witching Sound, the Anthropocene and the Occultcene
  • Barren Sound, Fertility and Infertility
  • Black Metal, Accelerationist Theory and Political Ideology 
  • Sound and the Future
  • Non-Human Sound and the Environment
  • Posthumanism and Ahumanism
  • Dark Kernow: Voice, Mythology and the Cornish Landscape
  • Voices on the Edge: Women+ and the Cornish Music and Sound Ecology

Research centre and group affiliations


Research Topics

  • Popular Music Studies
  • Voice
  • Songwriting
  • Sound Art
  • Noise & Experimental Music
  • Improvisation
  • Cultural Studies
  • Feminist Theory and Philosophy

Research Outputs

Publications and research outputs

  • Ferrett, D

    (2020), Dark Sound: Feminine Voices in Sonic Shadow, Bloomsbury, New York, ISBN: 9781501325809, Item availability may be restricted.
  • Ferrett, D, Thomas, Gustav and Hayden, Bridget

    (2018), Weaving intuitive illegitimate improvisation, In: Liminalities: Unforseen Encounters,, Online open access, 14 (1), pp. 90-109, ISSN: 1557-2935
  • Ferrett, D

    (2014), Improvising Themes of Abjection with Maggie Nicols, In: Performance Research: A Journal of the Performing Arts, Taylor & Francis, Abingdon, 19 (1), pp. 81-90, ISSN: 1352-8165, Item availability may be restricted.
  • Ferrett, D

    (2016), Halloween, Witchcraft and the Power of Spells, Aired on Community Radio Station, Source FM, Falmouth
  • Ferrett, D

    Lamb, Johny, (2015), Dark Sound: Destructive Pop 2015, AMATA, Falmouth University
  • Bossey, Adrian

    (2023), Live Audience Accessibility & Augmentation (‘LAAA’), In: Live Audience Accessibility & Augmentation, 17-19 May 2023, AMATA


2015 'Dark Sound: Destructive Pop', Performance Centre, AMATA.

Research Students

Current research students

I currently supervise PhD projects in soundscape ecology, aural diversity, gender studies, voice studies, songwriting, dark sound and occult/magical thinking.


Areas of teaching

  • Cultural Studies; Popular music studies; Critical Theory; Film and Media Studies; literary studies; gender and sexuality studies; song-writing and performance; voice studies; critical musicology

Courses taught

  • BA(Hons) Popular Music
  • BA(Hons) Creative Music Technology
  • BA(Hons) Music