Anna Czepiel

About meAnna_Czepiel_headshot2

I am a PhD student working at the Max Planck Institute of Empirical Aesthetics in Frankfurt, Germany in collaboration with Maastricht University under the supervision of Sonja Kotz, Melanie Wald-Fuhrman, and Julia Merrill. Although I come from a mainly musical background, my passion for cognitive neuroscience research was confirmed while conducting an internship during my Masters. I am currently researching the psychological, physiological, and neural mechanisms involved in production, perception, and aesthetic experience of music.


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My PhD project explores the neural, physiological, and aesthetic responses during naturalistic music listening in ecological contexts, specifically in live concert settings. I use synchrony (inter-subject correlation) and entrainment measures of EEG and physiology (heart, respiration, skin conductance, and EMG) to explore the experience of acoustic features (e.g., Music Information Retrieval [MIR] features) and contextual features (e.g., live and recorded performances) of Classical and contemporary music.

In addition to my PhD project, I am interested in neural and behavioural correlates of music production. I examine the neural mechanisms (EEG) of internal models in action planning, as well as movement features (Motion Capture) in expressive and emotional performances.

  • Naturalistic auditory stimuli
  • Music production
  • Synchrony and entrainment
  • Aesthetic experience
  • Ecological contexts


  • EEG
  • Physiology (heart, respiration, skin conductance, and EMG measures)
  • Motion Capture
  • Music Information Retrieval (MIR) analysis

Qualifications and Professional Experience

  • Since April 2019: PhD candidate, Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Frankfurt and at Maastricht University, The Netherlands
  • September 2018 – March 2019: Internship (Neurocognition of music performance) with the Otto Hahn Group Neural Bases of Intonation in Speech and Music, Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig
  • 2016-2019: Master in Music, Mind and Technology with Cognitive Neuroscience, University of Jyväskylä, Finland
  • 2013-2016: Bachelor in Music with First Class honors, University of York, U.K.

Selected Publications

Wald-Fuhrmann, M., Egermann, H., Czepiel, A., O’Neill, K., Weining, C., Meier, D, Tschacher, W., Uhde, F., Toelle, J. & Tröndle, M. (2021). Music Listening in Classical Concerts: Theory, Literature Review, and Research Program. Frontiers in Psychology, 12, 638783.

Merrill, J., Czepiel, A., Fink, L. T., Toelle, J., & Wald-Fuhrmann, M. (2021). The Aesthetic Experience of Live Concerts: Self-Reports and Psychophysiology. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts. Advance online publication.

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