Composers on stage: Ambiguous authorship in contemporary music performance

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    In recent years, workflows within the field of contemporary classical music have changed drastically. Increasingly, composers are active in the process of creating and co-creating performances, not only the auditory dimensions but also the visual design and theatrical staging. The practice has recently been termed The New Discipline (Walshe, 2016). Of particular interest to the present article are composers of this practice taking part in the performance itself, not as professional musicians but involving themselves in other ways. The article explores the ambivalent authorship at stake in these performances, arguing that they appear to be projects that reveal the processes of musical performance in ways that undermine the Romantic idea of the composer while concurrently celebrating that very same idea through their exposition and staging of the composer. The examples used to illustrate my argument are analyses of All the Time (Hodkinson 2001), Buenos Aires (Steen-Andersen 2014) and Ord for Ord (Rønsholdt 2014).
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalContemporary Music Review
    Volume35 (2016)
    Issue number6
    Pages (from-to)686-705
    Number of pages20
    Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2017

    Bibliographical note

    'Collaboration' in Contemporary Music


    • Composer
    • Contemporary music
    • Performance
    • Theatricality
    • Music as performance
    • Authorship

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