Music on the brain

22.40 – 22.55 | Café   

What happens in your brain when you listen to music? Music has the power to move hearts and soothe minds. Many people have a favorite song in times of sadness or happiness. Music and our emotions are very much interconnected. But why? Come and learn from neuroscientist Tinke van Buijtene what happens in your brain when you listen to music.  

Our brain and music 

What is it about music that triggers emotional responses? Psychologists suspect that a person’s strong response to music may be due to unexpected changes in musical features, thus enhancing tension and anticipation. Scientists found out that natural opioids, produced by the brain, are vital for experiencing both the positive and negative emotions in music. These chemicals are also involved in the pleasure that we get from eating sugary foods, gambling or having sex. Come and learn from neuroscientist Tinke van Buijtene about music, emotions and our brain. 

This Soundbite is in English. 

 About the speaker 

Tinke van Buijtene is a research assistant at the Sleep & Memory Lab of the Donders Institute for Neuroscience at Radboud University, and contributes to research into wearable EEG technology. As a PhD candidate, she will soon start researching the effects of sound and music on the brain. 

Radboud Sounds 

This program is part of Radboud Sounds. The festival where science meets music with lectures, dance, live music and more on Friday 12 May 2023 in Doornroosje, Nijmegen. Come and celebrate Radboud University’s 100th anniversary. Radboud University scientists from various disciplines shed their light on music and science. Come and listen, dance, enjoy and sharpen your mind on the effect of music. Compose your own program and see the world of music from a different viewpoint.