Musical Gestures: Sound, Movement, and Meaning

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We engage with music through body movement. During the performance of a musical piece, during listening, and certainly during dancing activities, we somehow relate the movements of our body to the movements of the sounds. Corporeal experiences and mental representations of movement form the basis of a sense-giving activity, which is typically reinforced in a social context. For music research, this embodied perspective is a significant change of paradigm, as it shifts the focus away from more abstract symbols of music notation towards the holistic meaningful experience of continuous sound and movement in relation to our bodies. The underlying concept is called musical gesture.

Musical Gestures: Sound, Movement, and Meaning is a collection of essays addressing the fundamental issues of gesture research in relation to music. This includes different approaches to what musical gestures are about, analyses of the relationships between gestures and sound, the relationships between performance and perception of gestures, and their significance and use in cultural contexts. It takes an interdisciplinary approach to these issues, drawing on ideas, theories, and methods from disciplines such as musicology, music perception, human movement science, cognitive psychology, and computer science.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415998864
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 12/18/2009
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.02 (w) x 9.29 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Rolf Inge Godøy is professor of musicology at the University of Oslo in Norway.

Marc Leman is research professor of systematic musicology at Ghent University in Belgium.

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Table of Contents

Foreword vii

Editors' Preface ix

Part I Gestures in Music 1

1 Why Study Musical Gestures? Marc Leman Rolf Inge Godøy 3

2 Musical Gestures: Concepts and Methods in Research Alexander Refsum Jensenius Marcelo M. Wanderley Rolf Inge Godøy Marc Leman 12

3 Gestures in Performance Sofia Dahl Frédéric Bevilacqua Roberto Bresin Martin Clayton Laura Leante Isabella Poggi Nicolas Rasamimanana 36

4 Music and Gestures: A Historical Introduction and Survey of Earlier Research Albrecht Schneider 69

Part II Gestural Significations 101

5 Gestural Affordances of Musical Sound Rolf Inge Godøy 103

6 Music, Gesture, and the Formation of Embodied Meaning Marc Leman 126

7 The Functional Role and Bio-kinetics of Basic and Expressive Gestures in Activation and Sonification Leon Van Noorden 154

Part III Gesture Generation and Control 181

8 Gesture and Timbre Tor Halmrast Knut Guettler Rolf Bader Rolf Inge Godøy 183

9 Sensorimotor Control of Sound-producing Gestures Sylvie Gibet 212

10 Visual Gesture Recognition: From Motion Tracking to Expressive Gesture Antonio Camurri Thomas B. Moeslund 238

11 Conductors' Gestures and Their Mapping to Sound Synthesis Gunnar Johannsen Teresa Marrin Nakra 264

Contributors 299

Index 301

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