Orlene McMahon


  • Department: Film Studies
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  • Office Hours: 
    By appointment

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Professor McMahon Fournié has been a part-time film lecturer at AUP since 2015. She completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts (English-Music) and a Master’s Degree in Film Studies at University College Cork (Ireland). After a year out of academia in Paris, she commenced her PhD in 2007 as a member of Gonville & Caius College at the University of Cambridge. Combining her two passions, cinema and music, her doctoral research focused on the music and composers of the French New Wave. Since receiving her doctorate in 2012, she has taught at Paris-Sorbonne University (Paris IV), AUP, and the Ecole normale supérieure (ENS).

Professor McMahon Fournié’s areas of research include French New Wave cinema, postwar European cinema, film music, and the more general fields of film history, theory, and criticism. Her first book Listening to the French New Wave: The Film Music and Composers of Postwar French Art Cinema was published by Peter Lang Oxford in Spring 2014. Forthcoming publications include a chapter on how music is used to explore the themes of memory, trauma, and the past in the films of Alain Resnais for a forthcoming book published by Routledge on music in European cinema. Current research interests focus on the topics of cinema as therapy and the relationship between psychology and film.


  • 2014 ‘Maître de conférences’, Qualification from the French University System, CNU – Section 18 – 142182420021.
  • 2012 Ph.D. (Film Music), University of Cambridge, Gonville & Caius College, UK.
  • 2006 MA Degree in Film Studies with First Class Honours, University College Cork, Ireland.
  • 2005 BA Degree with First Class Honours (Joint Degree –English &Music), University College Cork, Ireland.


Chapter Articles
  • ‘Fugue States: Music, Memory, and Trauma in the 1960s Films of Alain Resnais’, in Music in European Cinema, Ed. Michael Baumgartner and Ewelina Boczkowska, New York: Routledge, Forthcoming.
  • ‘Jacques Rivette: Un cinéaste à la sensibilité musicale moderne’, in La musique française de film, identité(s) et spécificité(s), Ed. Jérôme Rossi, Lyon: Symetrie, 2016.
  • ‘Reinventing the Documentary:  The Early Essay Films Soundtracks of Chris Marker’, in Music and Sound in Documentary Film, Ed. Holly Rogers, New York: Routledge, 2014.
Journal Articles
  • ‘An Analysis of the Soundtrack in the Work of Malcolm Le Grice’, Senses of Cinema, Issue 38 (Jan-March 2006), British Artists’ Film & Video Study Collection Research Papers, Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design (Spring 2006).
Journal Reviews
  • Conference review of ‘The signifying body: Hendrix, 31 August 1970, 2.00am’, Professor Nicholas Cook, JCMP Research Group International Seminars, Observatoire Musical Français (Université Paris-Sorbonne), February 23, 2013, in Volume! La revue des musiques populaires, Volume 10, Issue 2 (2014).
  • Book review of Tuning In: American Narrative Television Music, Ron Rodman (UK: Oxford University Press, 2010), Music, Sound and the Moving Image (Liverpool UP), Volume 7, Issue 2, pp. 201–206 (Autumn, 2013).
  • Book review of From Pac-Man to Pop Music: Interactive Audio in Games and New Media, Karen Collins, ed. (UK: Ashgate, 2008), Music, Sound and the Moving Image (Liverpool UP), Volume 4, Issue 1, pp. 123-129 (Spring 2010).

Conferences & Lectures

  • ‘Music, Motion, and Memory: Temporal Soundscapes in Chris Marker’s La jetée’, Music and Screen Media Conference, Research Centre for Audio-Visual Media, University of Liverpool (June 2014).
  • ‘Music in French Cinema: The Evolution of Film Music in France from 1895 to the Present’, The American University of Paris, Summer Film Institute Events, Paris (July 2012).
  • ‘Cellular (Film Music) Composition: Jean-Claude Eloy’s Score for Jacques Rivette’s La religieuse (1966)’, International Musicological Society, Music and Media Study Conference, Berlin (June 2010).
  • ‘La Nouvelle Vague: A Musical Revolution?’, Josai International University Media Studies Department: Alternative ‘Society for Cinema and Media Studies’ Conference, JIU, Tokyo (May 2009).
  • ‘Écoutez le cinema! : Rehearing the Nouvelle Vague, Fifty Years On…’, Studies in French Cinema Annual Conference: Screen Sounds, King’s College London (April 2009).
  • ‘Nouvelle Vague, New Music? : Listening to the French New Wave’, Royal Musical Association Research Students’ Conference, King’s College London (January 2009).
  • ‘Challenging Conventions: An Audiovisual Collaboration from the “First Wave” of Irish Film’, 17th International Screen Studies Conference, Glasgow (July 2008).
  • ‘Challenging Conventions: An Audiovisual Collaboration from the “First Wave” of Irish Film’, Third Annual Music and the Moving Image Conference, NYU Steinhardt, New York (May 2008).
  • ‘Questions of Intermediality arising from The Tristan Project’, Sight of Sound: Intermedia, Interdisciplinary Research Training Network Conference, Centre for Research in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (CRASSH), Cambridge University (November 2007).

Research Areas

  • French New Wave Cinema
  • Postwar European Cinema
  • Film Music
  • Film History
  • Film Theory
  • Film Criticism
  • Cinema as Therapy
  • Psychology and Film
  • Interdisciplinarity