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Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice

Johansson, Karin LU (2008) In Studies in music and music education 11.
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

ABSTRAKT

Titel: Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice [Orgelimprovisation - verksamhet, handling och retorisk praktik].

Författare: Karin Johansson

Språk: Engelska

Sökord: Orgelimprovisation, kulturhistorisk verksamhetsteori, högre musikutbildning, västerländsk konstmusik, diskursiv praktik, retorisk praktik.

ISSN: 1404-6539

ISBN: 978-91-976053-3-5

Avhandlingen fokuserar på samtida orgelimprovisation i västeuropeisk musikkultur, där organister representerar en historiskt kontinuerlig och nu levande improvisationstradition, som inte är vanlig i utbildning och framförandepraxis på andra klassiska instrument.... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

ABSTRAKT

Titel: Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice [Orgelimprovisation - verksamhet, handling och retorisk praktik].

Författare: Karin Johansson

Språk: Engelska

Sökord: Orgelimprovisation, kulturhistorisk verksamhetsteori, högre musikutbildning, västerländsk konstmusik, diskursiv praktik, retorisk praktik.

ISSN: 1404-6539

ISBN: 978-91-976053-3-5

Avhandlingen fokuserar på samtida orgelimprovisation i västeuropeisk musikkultur, där organister representerar en historiskt kontinuerlig och nu levande improvisationstradition, som inte är vanlig i utbildning och framförandepraxis på andra klassiska instrument. Syftet är att undersöka organisters beskrivningar, konstruktioner och definitioner av improvisation i ord och musik, med ett intresse för samspelet mellan receptivitet, kreativitet och förändring. Orgelimprovisation som forskningsobjekt ses som en källa till studier av pedagogiska och konstnärliga processer i självreglerat lärande och musikaliskt framförande. Ett teoretiskt ramverk med utgångspunkt i verksamhetsteori används för att studera orgelimprovisation som del av dynamiska kulturhistoriska aktivitetssystem, där musicerande och lärande utvecklas, förändras och expanderar.

Metodologiskt ses deltagarnas framställande och användande av improviserad musik i övning och professionella framföranden som diskursiva praktiker. Fem manliga och fem kvinnliga organister från fyra länder deltog i studien, samtliga professionellt verksamma som orgelimprovisatörer. Studiens uppläggning bestod av två intervjutillfällen som dokumenterades med ljud- och filminspelning. Det första var en kvalitativ djupintervju vid orgeln och det andra ett offentligt framförande som följdes av en avslutande intervju. Det resulterande datamaterialet bestod av verbala såväl som musikaliska yttranden, och analyserades med hjälp av dataprogrammet Hyperresearch.

Resultaten visar att organisterna i studien har en expansiv attityd till notation och musicerande, vilket dekonstruerar motsättningen mellan interpretation och improvisation. Dessutom pekar resultaten på hur improvisationens musikaliska karaktär är avhängig av framförandesammanhanget. Två diskurser om musik - musik som medel och musik som självändamål - och två diskurser i musik - kontextuell kommunikation och individuellt uttryck - identifierades som situerade i liturgin å ena sidan och i konserten å andra sidan. Diskurserna reglerar utrymmet för det musikaliska uttrycket och är relaterade till strategier för skapande och lärande, samt till gestaltandet av musik som kommunikativa händelser.

Som aktivitetssystem har liturgin och konserten olika historiska bakgrunder: Medan liturgin har rötterna i en förmodern syn på musik och musicerande, utgår konserten från den romantiska 1800-talsbilden av det virtuosa geniet. Dessa två historiska spår diskuteras som relaterade till olika strategier för lärande och skapande, som täcker en skala från historiska stilstudier till personligt baserade ögonblickskompositioner, samt till de genusmönster som framkom i studien. Studien visar på hur diskursmedvetenhet, en förmåga till självutvärdering och integrerade bedömningsgrunder för kvalitet är centrala beståndsdelar i en självständig musikalisk praktik. Med utgångspunkt i resultaten ses orgelimprovisation som en samtida retorisk praktik, och de improviserande organisterna som musikaliska talare med avsiktliga och viktiga musikaliska budskap. En modell för expansiv undervisning och förslag på användning av verksamhetsteori inom konstnärlig forskning presenteras. Avhandlingen kan bidra med kunskap om konstnärliga och pedagogiska strategier för improvisation såväl i framförandesituationer som i samband med högre musikundervisning. (Less)
Abstract
ABSTRACT

Title: Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice.

Author: Karin Johansson

Language: English.

Keywords: Organ improvisation, cultural-historical activity theory, higher music education, Western art music, discursive practices, rhetorical practice.

ISSN: 1404-6539

ISBN: 978-91-976053-3-5



This thesis focuses on contemporary organ improvisation in Western European musical culture. The aim of the study is to explore organists’ descriptions, constructions and definitions of improvisation in words and music, with an interest in the interaction between receptivity, creativity and change. As a research object, the art of organ improvisation is... (More)
ABSTRACT

Title: Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice.

Author: Karin Johansson

Language: English.

Keywords: Organ improvisation, cultural-historical activity theory, higher music education, Western art music, discursive practices, rhetorical practice.

ISSN: 1404-6539

ISBN: 978-91-976053-3-5



This thesis focuses on contemporary organ improvisation in Western European musical culture. The aim of the study is to explore organists’ descriptions, constructions and definitions of improvisation in words and music, with an interest in the interaction between receptivity, creativity and change. As a research object, the art of organ improvisation is defined as a source for exploring learning and creative processes in self-directed learning and artistic performance. The framework of activity theory is applied in order to study organ improvisation as forming part of dynamic cultural-historical activity systems, where music-making and learning develop, transform and expand.

For methodological purposes, the participating organists’ production and use of improvised music in professional practice and performance are seen as discursive practices. Five male and five female professional organ improvisers from four countries participated in the study. The data collection took place at two occasions: (i) a semi-structured, in-depth interview at the organ, and (ii) a public musical performance, followed by a concluding interview. Both occasions were DV documented and MD recorded. Data thus consisted of verbal as well as musical statements, and were submitted to a qualititative and interpretive analysis through the use of the computer soft-ware Hyperresearch.

The results show that the organists in this study display an expansive approach towards notation and music-making, which thus deconstructs the opposition between interpretation and improvisation. Moreover, the results show how the character of organ improvisation depends on the performance contexts: Two discourses on music - music as a means and music as an end in itself - and two discourses in music - contextual communication and individual expression - were identified as situated in the liturgy and the concert, respectively. These discourses regulate the scope for musical expression, and are connected to clearly defined learning and creative strategies as well as to the shaping of the communicative events of sounding music.

The gender differences found in the study are discussed as connected to two historical tracks, and to differing, but equally successful strategies, covering an imagined scale from historical style studies of composed musical works to individually conceived instant compositions. In conclusion, organ improvisation is viewed as a contemporary rhetorical practice, where the organists as musical orators act with (i) a well-informed discourse awareness, (ii) an ability to make self-assessments, and (iii) a stable, integrated sense of musical quality, in expressing intentional and important musical messages. A model of expansive teaching and suggestions for the use of activity theory in artistic research are put forward. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Professor Welch, Graham, Institute of Education, University of London
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
rhetorical practice., cultural-historical activity theory, higher music education, Western art music, discursive practices, Organ improvisation
in
Studies in music and music education
volume
11
pages
208 pages
publisher
Malmö Academy of Music, Lund University
defense location
Malmö Academy of Music, Ystadvägen 25, Malmö
defense date
2008-02-29 10:00
ISBN
978-91-976053-3-5
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
e2f4152f-5999-4e46-aaa8-79e100fe878f (old id 1022426)
date added to LUP
2008-02-06 17:00:46
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:04
@misc{e2f4152f-5999-4e46-aaa8-79e100fe878f,
  abstract     = {ABSTRACT<br/><br>
Title: Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice.<br/><br>
Author: Karin Johansson<br/><br>
Language: English.<br/><br>
Keywords: Organ improvisation, cultural-historical activity theory, higher music education, Western art music, discursive practices, rhetorical practice.<br/><br>
ISSN: 1404-6539<br/><br>
ISBN: 978-91-976053-3-5<br/><br>
<br/><br>
This thesis focuses on contemporary organ improvisation in Western European musical culture. The aim of the study is to explore organists’ descriptions, constructions and definitions of improvisation in words and music, with an interest in the interaction between receptivity, creativity and change. As a research object, the art of organ improvisation is defined as a source for exploring learning and creative processes in self-directed learning and artistic performance. The framework of activity theory is applied in order to study organ improvisation as forming part of dynamic cultural-historical activity systems, where music-making and learning develop, transform and expand.<br/><br>
For methodological purposes, the participating organists’ production and use of improvised music in professional practice and performance are seen as discursive practices. Five male and five female professional organ improvisers from four countries participated in the study. The data collection took place at two occasions: (i) a semi-structured, in-depth interview at the organ, and (ii) a public musical performance, followed by a concluding interview. Both occasions were DV documented and MD recorded. Data thus consisted of verbal as well as musical statements, and were submitted to a qualititative and interpretive analysis through the use of the computer soft-ware Hyperresearch. <br/><br>
The results show that the organists in this study display an expansive approach towards notation and music-making, which thus deconstructs the opposition between interpretation and improvisation. Moreover, the results show how the character of organ improvisation depends on the performance contexts: Two discourses on music - music as a means and music as an end in itself - and two discourses in music - contextual communication and individual expression - were identified as situated in the liturgy and the concert, respectively. These discourses regulate the scope for musical expression, and are connected to clearly defined learning and creative strategies as well as to the shaping of the communicative events of sounding music. <br/><br>
The gender differences found in the study are discussed as connected to two historical tracks, and to differing, but equally successful strategies, covering an imagined scale from historical style studies of composed musical works to individually conceived instant compositions. In conclusion, organ improvisation is viewed as a contemporary rhetorical practice, where the organists as musical orators act with (i) a well-informed discourse awareness, (ii) an ability to make self-assessments, and (iii) a stable, integrated sense of musical quality, in expressing intentional and important musical messages. A model of expansive teaching and suggestions for the use of activity theory in artistic research are put forward.},
  author       = {Johansson, Karin},
  isbn         = {978-91-976053-3-5},
  keyword      = {rhetorical practice.,cultural-historical activity theory,higher music education,Western art music,discursive practices,Organ improvisation},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {208},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0x8cc06f8)},
  series       = {Studies in music and music education},
  title        = {Organ improvisation - activity, action and rhetorical practice},
  volume       = {11},
  year         = {2008},
}