DMus (NWU) | MMus (NWU) | HonsBMus (NWU) | BMus (NWU) | PGCE (NWU)
Prof Liesl van der Merwe was awarded the degrees DMus in bassoon performance, MMus (cum laude), BMus Honours (cum laude) and BMus (cum laude) at the North-West University. She also completed a PGCE. She won the SAMRO and FAK music prizes in 1995 and 1996. Prof Van der Merwe started her music career as a bassoonist in the South African Army Band and continued as principal bassoon of the National Chamber Orchestra. She has been an ad hoc member of various orchestras such as the JPO, NAPOP, NYO, JFO and NNSO. In 2001 she started as a woodwind and general music teacher at the International School of South Africa in Mafikeng where she taught students from Grade 3 up to A levels and conducted the ISSA wind band. Until 2010 she was a music lecturer in the Faculty of Education Sciences at North-West University, responsible for training teachers in the Arts and Culture Learning Area.
From 2013-2017 Prof Van Merwe was the director of the research niche area MASARA (Musical Arts in South Africa: Resources and Application). Currently, she is an associate professor in the School of Music at the North-West University and an honorary research fellow in the School of Music at Bangor University, North Wales. Her research interests lie in the fields of music and wellbeing, Dalcroze Eurhythmics, spirituality and lived musical experiences. She supervises postgraduate studies in the field of music education and also teaches research methodology, music education and bassoon. She has published articles in high impact journals such as Psychology of Music, Journal of Research in Music Education, International Journal of Research in Music Education and International Journal of Children’s Spirituality. She has examined postgraduate studies for UP, UFS, US, Rhodes and Wits, and is a reviewer for academic journals. She also performs in chamber music ensembles and is the conductor of the North-West Youth Orchestra.