Dr Clemens Maidhof

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Music Therapy

Music for Health Research Centre

Faculty:Faculty of Arts, Law & Social Sciences

Department:School of Performance

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Music therapy , Neuroscience , Brain & Cognition

Clemens Maidhof is a Postdoctoral Researcher in Music Therapy. He has a background in Musicology and Psychology, with a focus on research into the Cognitive Neuroscience of Music.



Clemens joined Anglia Ruskin University in 2016 after doing research at the University of Cologne, Germany, the Finnish Centre for Interdisciplinary Music Research in Helsinki/Jyvaskyla and at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig, Germany. He holds an MA in Musicology from the University of Cologne and a PhD in Psychology from the Freie Universitat Berlin, Germany.

Spoken Languages

  • German
  • English
  • Dutch

Research interests

  • Neural dynamics of clinical improvisation
  • Neural mechanisms underlying action monitoring in musicians
  • Brain-computer music interfaces
  • Syntactic processing of language and music
  • Multi-modal data acquisition and mobile brain-behaviour research 

Clemens’ research interests are in the cognitive neurosciences of music. He has published several papers about error monitoring in music performance, utilizing EEG, motion capture and musical (MIDI) data. He has also conducted research on the neural mechanisms underlying syntactic processing of music and language and the effects of attention on these processes. His current primary research interests are the neural dynamics underlying music improvisation during therapy, for which he combines music therapy research with social cognitive neuroscience.


  • MA in Musicology, University of Cologne, Germany
  • PhD in Psychology, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

Clemens has served as an ad-hoc reviewer for different journals such as Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, NeuroImage, International Journal of Psychophysiology, Psychological Research, PLoS ONE, Music Perception, Music Perception, Frontiers in Psychology, Experimental Brain Research, Cognition

Selected recent publications

Maidhof, C., Kästner, T., & Makkonen, T. (2014). Combining EEG, MIDI, and motion capture techniques for investigating musical performance. Behavior Research Methods, 46(1), 185–95. 

Maidhof, C. (2013). Error monitoring in musicians. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 1–8. 

Maidhof, C., Pitkäniemi, A., & Tervaniemi, M. (2013). Predictive error detection in pianists: a combined ERP and motion capture study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 587. 

Maidhof, C., & Koelsch, S. (2011). Effects of selective attention on syntax processing in music and language. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 23(9), 2252–2267. 

Maidhof, C., Vavatzanidis, N., Prinz, W., Rieger, M., & Koelsch, S. (2010). Processing expectancy violations during music performance and perception: an ERP study. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 22(10), 2401–2413.

Maidhof, C., Rieger, M., Prinz, W., & Koelsch, S. (2009). Nobody is perfect: ERP effects prior to performance errors in musicians indicate fast monitoring processes. PLoS One, 4(4), 1–7.