Free E-pub: The Field of Musical Improvisation
Prof.dr. Marcel Cobussen has published a free e-pub: The Field of Musical Improvisation.
The central aim of this e-pub is to present a new approach to “the field of musical improvisation” (FMI), a theory which understands improvisation as a nonlinear dynamic and complex system. The study argues that during an improvisation more actants are “at work” than musicians alone: space, acoustics, instruments, audience, technicians, musical and socio-cultural backgrounds, technology, and the like all play a significant role. However, not all of these actants determine every improvisation to the same extent; some are more prominent and active than others in certain situations (periods, styles, cultures, as well as more singular circumstances). Therefore, the FMI theory will prove to be more than a theory dealing with improvisation “in general.” Rather, FMI emphasizes singularity: each improvisation thus yields a different network of actants and interactions, a unique configuration or assembly.
It is startlingly original in so much as it brings a philosophical/social understanding to the field of musical improvisation. I’ve not really encountered a work that does this so imaginatively and thoroughly. Indeed – reading the work – I think the whole manuscript is one wonderful set of improvisations – and as such works very well.
Michael Bull Professor of Sound Studies at the University of Sussex
More of Marcel Cobussen in October
On October 17 Marcel Cobussen will give a lecture at the Ghent University in the context of a C3Places project meeting.
On October 18 Marcel will give a lecture at the Symposium 'Geluid als Stadmaker', organized by Soundtrackcity in Amsterdam. The Symposium is held at the Reinwardt Academy in Amsterdam.
On October 22 Marcel will participate in a roundtable discussion about improvisation and complex systems at Stroom, The Hague: The Reading Room #21, IN THE THICK OF THINGS- Untangling the Spatial Processes of Improvisation.