Sue Miller – Cuban Flute Improviser, Writer & Academic

Research Interests

Improvisation Studies


Cuban Music -  History, Analysis and Performance

History and Analysis of African American music

African American Studies and the Concept of Signifyin(g) (the work of Henry Louis Gates and Samuel Floyd)

Performance Practice – historical perspectives applied to popular forms

Analysis of Popular and ‘World’ musics

History and Analysis of Anglo-American Popular Music

New Areas in Ethnomusicology (interdisciplinary work)

Music and Dance Relationships

Richard Egues and Sue Miller

Richard Egues and Sue Miller


I obtained a  PhD from the University of Leeds, UK, where I combined my practical work as a performer with more traditional research methods and academic writing. My work has involved recording in the studio and live at concerts, with analysis, commentary and transcription of flute improvisations linked in to this practical side. My research covers various academic areas such as music analysis, improvisation, black cultural studies, jazz studies, ethnomusicology and performance.

My thesis  ‘Flute Improvisation in Cuban Charanga performance, had a specific focus on the work of Richard Egües and Orquesta Aragón’ and is now available from the University of Leeds library.’

I was supervised at the University of Leeds School of Music by Dr Luke Windsor (Psychology of Music and Performance) Dr Luke Windsor

New Work:

My book Cuban Flute Style: Interpretation and Improvisation was published in November 2013 by Scarecrow Press and looks at the history of the style and performance practice whilst analysing recorded solos in-depth and examining the relationship between composition, improvisation and the creative process.

A collaboration with dancer turned animator Guillermo ‘el iyawo’ Davis is underway and a new animation short is planned for 2017.