Professor Yolanda Plumley

Research interests

My research to date has focussed especially on French music and lyric poetry from the late thirteenth to the early fifteenth centuries and their cultural context. My publications have concerned music, musicians, and poet-composers active at the courts of the Valois and at the Papal court in Avignon (c1320-c1420), in particular Guillaume de Machaut and his successors of the so-called Ars subtilior. A collaborative research project with Professor Anne Stone (Graduate Centre, New York) led to the publication of our study of the famous Chantilly codex, one of the most important late medieval music sources, and a volume of essays on this source. From January 2007 to 2010, I was principal investigator for an AHRC-funded project on Citation and Allusion in the Late Medieval French Motet and Chanson, which has led to a series of publications, including a major monograph entitled The Art of Grafted Song (OUP 2013), several essays, a PhD thesis, two volumes of essays on citation, intertextuality and memory in late medieval and Renaissance culture in general, and an online searchable database of lyrics (see I am currently principal investigator on a major collaborative project on Guillaume de Machaut funded by The Leverhulme Trust, which is working to produce a new complete edition of the poetry and music of this important figure, as well as associated research on his output and on the Machaut manuscripts ( As part of these two projects, I organised two interdisciplinary international workshops 'Citation in French medieval poetry' (2007) and 'Citation in Medieval Music' (2008), and the interdisciplinary conferences 'Citation, Intertextuality, Memory: Text, Music and Image in the Middle Ages' (2009) and 'Guillaume de Machaut' (2013).

Research collaborations

With Professor Anne Stone (Graduate Centre, City University, New York) I collaborated on a detailed study of the Chantilly codex and its musical repertory, which was published with a full colour facsimile of the manuscript by Brepols in 2008. We also edited a volume of essays on this important source published in 2009.

Since 2010, I have been collaborating with an international team of experts in late medieval music, literature and art on a cross-disciplinary research project on medieval composer and poet Guillaume de Machaut (1300-1377), which includes work toward making a new edition of this literary and musical output of this figure. These collaborators include Professor R. Barton Palmer (Clemson University), Professor Anne Stone (Graduate Centre, City University, New York), Dr Jacques Boogaart (University of Amsterdam), Dr Domenic Leo (Youngstown University), Dr Uri Smilansky, and Dr Tamsyn Rose-Steel. I am also undertaking collaborative research on Machaut with Professor Remco Sleiderink (University of Brussels).

The Machaut project has also involved collaboration with two early music ensembles, the celebrated Orlando Consort ( and Ensemble Le Basile. The project website features some purpose-made recordings by these two groups to illustrate our work and questions relating to the interpretation and editing of Machaut's music We are also working with the Orlando Consort to produce a series of commercial recordings of the songs of Machaut (Hyperion), the first of which was released in October 2013