Course Case Study: New MusM Music Performance Studies • Researching Performance: Issues and Approaches.

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In their joint Introduction to the edited volume Taking it to the Bridge: Music as Performance (2013, University of Michigan Press), musicologist Nicholas Cook and Theatre Studies scholar Richard Pettengil wrote that “The wonder is not that music and performance studies have come together but that they ever needed to be brought together. After all, what is music if not performance, real-time collective practice that brings people together as players and listeners, choreographs social relationships, and expresses and constructs individual and group identities?... Take away the performance, and you take away the music.”

In the Researching Performance: Issues and Approaches Course Unit within the new MusM Music Performance Studies, students will discover the fascinating story behind the emergence of Music Performance Studies as a new academic discipline during the twenty-first century, learn about the continuities between artistic performance and performative behaviours in everyday life, and develop the skills to analyse, interpret and evaluate music performances from a variety of genres as culturally and historically contingent, fully embodied practices.

This Course Unit will broaden the aesthetic horizons of music students by introducing alternative ways of thinking about the art of musical performance, through the lens of recent research. It will also encourage students to bring the performative and textual aspects of music into creative dialogue, and inspire them to engage with scholarly knowledge as a creative partner in their artistic practice.

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