Accepted Paper:

Transitory essence of music experience: autoethnography of music improvisation  


Rajko Mursic (University of Ljubljana)

Paper short abstract:

The author will discuss transitory nature of music experience in terms of moving through imagined time and compressing the multidimensional space of sensorial perception in music improvisation. He will discuss complexes in body-playing-music and sound-searching-meaning in moments of improvisation.

Paper long abstract:

Music improvisation is condensed practice of listening, remembering, anticipation, non-verbal communication and attempt in breaking an illusion of the moment. Essentially transitory movements of body-playing-music are continuously transformed into sound-searching-meaning trajectories. In music improvisation, the cloud of possibilities (pace Carrithers) is constantly changing. The meaningful trajectory might find a conclusion in the moment of recapitulation, or it simply vanishes away, in silence, or noise. If improvisation is formulaic, instead of sound-searching-meaning, the result is either word-searching-story (e.g., in Balkan gusle singing) or composition-searching-structure (e.g., in jazz). If improvisation does not apply any formulaic development, it may challenge the whole (a)perception of the given moment.

The author will discuss sensorial moments in improvisation among musicians and (eventually) dancers in their essentially non-verbal communication during compressed moments of individual or group active co-creation of the flow of sound and movement.

Panel MB-SAR02
Scenes of sensual ethnographic encounters, scenes of resistance, performative and transitory music scenes (IUAES Commission on Music, Dance, Performative Practices and Sound)