Boyle, Patrick

Assistant Professor


Phone number: (250) 721-7928
Department: Music

Research description:

- Improvisation in music
- Improvisational techniques devices and parameters
- Jazz music and jazz theory
- Trumpet
Expertise Profile
Making music is about making mistakes - and learning from them.

That is University of Victoria music professor Dr. Patrick Boyle's teaching mantra and also a cornerstone of his music and his research.

Dr. Boyle is a trumpeter and a jazz musician, though he doesn't restrict himself to one genre. He directs the jazz orchestra and teaches all of the jazz courses in the music department at UVic.

Prime among them is a course on improvisation.

Dr. Boyle's dissertation for his Doctorate of Musical Arts focused on improvisation and the politics of error. He studies how people make mistakes and how they are trained to deal with them.

When a student worries about their ability to improvise, Dr. Boyle points out the natural improvisation we do in everyday life, such as making dinner or simply crossing at a crowded crosswalk.

Dr. Boyle believes that music and improvisation have much to offer both students and society. He's seen first-hand how improvisation help students negotiate situations of tension and anxiety, inside and outside of music.

He sings the praises of music programs like UVic's that produce students who come out able to think critically about a wide range of problems. Negotiation and dealing with failure are an inherent part of music-making and also valid skills in any profession.

As a performer, Dr. Boyle loves to record music and can be heard on more than 40 recordings and two critically acclaimed solo albums.

No stranger to the stage, the Newfoundland-raised musician has performed across North America, Europe and Australia. He recently performed at Carnegie Hall with tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain and drummer Steve Smith.

Related Links
Dr. Boyle's website:

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