Sketches and Exercises – History and Theory of Compositional Writing

Call for submissions

The Grieg Research Center at the University of Bergen arranges a two-day seminar 21 – 22 November 2016 at the Bergen Public Library.

Invited speakers:
Jim Samson (Professor Emeritus, Royal Holloway University of London)
Peter Hauge (Senior researcher and editor, The Royal Library, Copenhagen)
Bjørn Morten Christophersen (Lecturer and composer, University of Oslo)
Erlend Hovland (Associated professor, Norwegian Academy of Music, Oslo)

Sketch studies belong to the methodological core of historical musicology, analysis, and critical editing concerned with the works of 19th and 20th century composers. The study of sketches promise to give insight into the composer’s workshop: as traces of the creative process, sketches shed light on the genesis of a composition from idea to ‘masterwork’. Further, sketch studies can enrich the understanding of the work as a constellation of intertextual associations, whilst the study of compositional exercises might reveal the hidden learning processes behind the formation of a composer’s style.

The overall aim of this seminar is twofold,

  1. to analyze, assess, and contextualize the compositional writing of composers, which correlates with the rise of the conservatories in Paris, Leipzig, and Berlin during the 19th century
  2. to reflect on the current scope, historicity and epistomology of sketch studies within musicological disciplines.

Related issues to be addressed are

  • conceptions of the compositional process
  • changing practices of compositional writing
  • the relationship of music aesthetics, music theory, and compositional practice
  • craftsmanship, creativity, and the concept of the genius
  • the function and value of compositional exercises
  • the influence of teachers, schools, and institutions
  • the relationship of writing and style
  • writing as embodied act
  • the contingencies of notation, imagination and experience.

The seminar takes place at the Senter for Griegforskning, Bergen Offentlige Bibliotek (see map here).

Paper proposals of no more than 200 words can be submitted by October 03, 2016 to the following e-mail address: Arnulf Mattes,

Number of places is restricted. Please register for the seminar at the seminar web page. Conference fee for participants, including two lunches at ‘Amalies Hage’ and coffee breaks: NOK 500.

The seminar is arranged by the Senter for Griegforskning (Grieg Research Center) at the University of Bergen in cooperation with the International Grieg Society.

Music in Nineteenth Century Britain – 2017

The Eleventh Music in C19th Britain conference will take place at the University of Birmingham from 28 to 30 June 2017 inclusive. A call for papers will be issued in late September, with a closing date in early December. Further details will appear here on the  Golden Pages, the conference website (, the University of Birmingham music webpages and via Musicology-All in due course. Enquiries may be directed to:


Dr Paul Rodmell

Department of Music

University of Birmingham



B15 2TT

Experiments in Music Research: Reassessing Pierre Schaeffer’s Contributions to Music and Sound Studies

Experiments in Music Research
Reassessing Pierre Schaeffer’s Contributions to Music and Sound Studies
9 December 2016
Department of Music, University of Birmingham

The Traité des objets musicaux (Treatise of musical objects) is the central theoretical text for the loosely-defined ‘acousmatic’ school of composers that spun off from Pierre Schaeffer’s quarter century of research for the French public broadcaster, first as director of the Groupe de recherche de musique concrète (GRMC), and later with the Groupe de recherche musicale (GRM). Now, fifty years after its original publication, Schaeffer’s work is finally beginning to appear in English translation. At the same time, his carefully wrought meta-language for the relationship between human listening and musical sound is increasingly being tested as a conceptual resource for musicology and sound studies more generally. For all his notoriety, however, it is remarkable how little critical attention has yet been paid to the anatomy and genealogy of Schaeffer’s thought. Engagement with Schaeffer’s ideas, in English especially, has been unevenly focused on a small portion of his eclectic conceptual repertoire, and mostly written from a microscopic perspective that favours putting his system to work over understanding its historical and intellectual implications. Meanwhile, histories of experimental and electronic music have typically emphasized Schaeffer’s work as an engineer and composer over the theoretical project which he considered his highest achievement.

A closer reading of the Traité complicates such reductions. The book is both a prolegomenon to experimental composition, and an exploration of the implications of a musical pluralism brought about by an expanding global mediascape. His concern was not simply with studying listening as a phenomenon or with prescribing specific listening practices, then, but with repositioning listening as the foundation of all musical discipline: from the savoir faire of his solfège, to the analytical attention of his ‘music research’. Any critical reevaluation of Schaeffer’s work should thus be situated not only in relation to the history of electronic music, but also in relation to the history of musical listening and its representation in musicology and sound studies.

This one-day conference invites new critical readings of Pierre Schaeffer’s work. Its goal is to reassess the position of Schaeffer’s theory in the history of musicology and sound studies, its proximity to contemporary concerns in the study of listening and auditory culture, and the implications of engaging with its terminology and epistemology outside of the acousmatic tradition. While previous Schaeffer scholarship has largely maintained a prescriptive focus on the composition and reception of musique concrète, this conference seeks to amplify the dialogue between Schaeffer’s theory and other disciplines. It is timed to precede the appearance of the English translation of the Traité, and will thus set the agenda for future research in the field.

Possible topic areas include, but are not limited to:

  • the Traité des Objets Musicaux as a historical document
  • the Traité, the GRM, and acousmatic music as cultural institutions
  • comparative readings of Schaeffer’s theory with that of his contemporaries
  • critical re-readings of the Traité’s taxonomies
  • Schaeffer’s work as a media personality, novelist or essayist
  • Schaeffer’s philosophy of science and technology
  • the Traité as an analytical or compositional resource for non-acousmatic repertoire
  • Schaeffer and the theory of interdisciplinarity
  • Schaeffer’s work from the perspective of music psychology and cognitive science
  • Schaeffer’s work from the perspective of ethnomusicology and auditory culture studies
  • applications of Schaeffer’s ideas to the cinema and visual media
  • language, speech, and semiotics in the Traité

Abstracts of up to 300 words should be sent to by 30 September 2016. The conference will take place in the Department of Music at the University of Birmingham on 9 December 2016, and will be free to attend. A limited number of small travel stipends are available for doctoral students and early career researchers. Please indicate your intention to apply for a stipend when you submitting an abstract. Selected presenters will be invited to contribute to a collection of essays to be published after the conference.

Experiments in Music Research is presented in collaboration with the Birmingham Electroacoustic Sound Theatre, University of Birmingham, and with the support of the Institute of Musical Research, Royal Holloway, University of London.

Organizing Committee:
Dr Patrick Valiquet, Institute of Musical Research
Dr Scott Wilson, University of Birmingham

3rd International Conference of Dalcroze Studies (ICDS3)

Call for submissions

3rd International Conference of Dalcroze Studies (ICDS3)

‘The living moment: Exploring improvisational practice’

30 July – 03 August 2017

Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada


The conference

The aim of ICDS3 is to present the best of current research and practice within Dalcroze Studies and related fields. ICDS is a global, transdisciplinary forum, open to viewpoints from education, the arts and humanities, and the social, health and life sciences. We welcome practitioners and scholars alike. This year our theme is improvisation in music, dance, somatic practices, theatre and therapy, with a special focus on the relationships between music/sound and movement.


Keynote speakers (confirmed)

Reto W. Kressig, Professor and Chair of Geriatrics, University Center for Medicine of Aging Basel (UAB), Felix-Platter Hospital, University of Basel, Switzerland

Raymond MacDonald, Professor of Music Psychology and Improvisation, Reid School of Music, University of Edinburgh, Scotland

Max van Manen, Professor Emeritus, University of Alberta, Canada

Keynote practitioners (confirmed)

Ruth Alperson (PhD), Dean, Hoff-Barthelson Music School, USA

Ruth Gianadda, Professor, Institute Jaques-Dalcroze, Geneva, Switzerland

Karin Greenhead, Director of Studies, Dalcroze UK

Lisa Parker, Director, Longy Dalcroze Institute, Longy School of Music of Bard College, USA


‘The living moment: Exploring improvisational practice’

Improvisation forms the basis of human communication from infancy to the end of life. It defines the moment-to-moment flow of activity in our everyday interactions and is fundamental to creativity and innovation.

Improvisation is also central to music, dance and somatic traditions across culture, time and space. Musical and movement improvisation can be put to work in many contexts, including the pedagogical, therapeutic and performative, to bring about transformation. Improvisation can be both process and product, and an agent of change.

In Dalcroze Eurhythmics and related fields of practice, musical and movement improvisation are the main means of communication between teacher and learner, therapist and client, and between participants themselves.


Call for proposals

We welcome presentations on improvisation, as it relates to Dalcroze Eurhythmics and music, movement and the mindful body more broadly. We embrace a wide range of disciplines and areas, such as: anthropology, architecture, biomedical science, communication science, cultural studies, dance studies, somatic practices, education, ethnomusicology, gender studies, history, literature, media studies, musicology, music therapy, philosophy, politics, psychology, sociology, theatre and performance studies, and visual arts.

We invite practitioners and researchers to share their knowledge, experience and scholarship on this theme. Conference topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Music-movement improvisation
  • Descriptions and theories of improvisation
  • Improvisation and embodiment
  • Improvisation in culture and improvisation as culture
  • Improvisation as social relationship or dialogue
  • Improvisation as process, as product, as means
  • Interdisciplinary and intermedial approaches to improvisation
  • Teaching improvisation
  • The role of improvisation in pedagogy, performance, therapy and research
  • Teaching as an improvisational practice
  • Assessing and evaluating improvisation
  • Developing curricula and educational material on improvisation
  • Improvisation and the professional development of teachers
  • The interaction of technology and improvisation
  • Improvisation and wellbeing
  • Personal and social development through improvisation
  • Improvisation and ethics (empowerment, social justice)
  • Improvisation and community
  • The historical development and transmission of improvisational practice in Dalcroze Eurhythmics and related fields


Types of presentation

  • Paper* (20 mins + 10 mins discussion) – research papers and reflections on practice
  • Workshop* (60 mins, including discussion) – an interactive session offering hands-on experience. These will be limited in number due to space and time restrictions
  • Symposium (90 mins, including discussion) – a shared platform for at least three delegates to present a specific research topic in-depth and to discuss each other’s work in a public forum. Please specify who will chair the symposium.
  • Roundtable (90 mins, including discussion) – a semi-planned conversation amongst stakeholders who wish to have a public dialogue to which delegates can contribute. Instead of presenting research results, a roundtable is a public discussion with a view to arriving at shared understandings, new insights and/or proposals for action. Please specify who will chair the roundtable.
  • Informal daytime performance (duration variable, to be arranged with organising committee)
  • Evening performance (duration variable, to be arranged with organising committee)
  • Poster
  • Presentation to host ICDS5 in 2021 (20 mins + 10 mins discussion); we would love to hear from organisations or institutions in any country who would like to host a future conference! 



Submit your proposal/s at

Deadline for all submissions: Sunday 30 October 2016 23:59 (BST)

The language of presentations is English.

Delegates may submit a maximum of three proposals.

Notification to presenters by 18 December 2016


Online registration

Presenters must register and pay by 13 January 2017

All other delegates must register and pay by 30 June 2017



Before 31 March 2017 (Early bird rates): Regular $375; Student $250

After 31 March 2017: Regular $450; Student $325

Fee includes refreshments, light lunch and conference materials

(*All fees are in Canadian dollars and subject to tax by the Federal / Provincial government; please go to the registration pages for more information)


Scientific Committee

Dr John Habron (Senior Lecturer) Coventry University, Coventry, UK (Chair)

Dr Ruth Alperson (Dean) Hoff-Barthelson Music School, New York, USA

Karin Greenhead (Director of Studies) Dalcroze UK

Dr Marja-Leena Juntunen (Professor) Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts, Helsinki, Finland

Dr Louise Mathieu (Professor) Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada

Dr Selma Odom (Professor Emerita) York University, Toronto, Canada

Dr Jane Southcott (Associate Professor) Monash University, Victoria, Australia


Organising Committee

Prof. Josée Vaillancourt (Chair), Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada

Prof. Louise Mathieu (Co-Chair), Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada

Prof. Ursula Stuber, Université Laval, Quebec City, Canada

Prof. Gilles Comeau, University of Ottawa, Canada






Russia and the Musical World: Nineteenth-Century Networks of Exchange

16th December 2016

Centre for Russian Music, Goldsmiths, University of London



This study day seeks to generate discussion on how and why music, musicians and musical materials moved in, through and out of Russia during the long nineteenth century. Russia’s connections to the nineteenth-century musical world remain understudied. While various isolated moments of transfer are well known – the premiere of Verdi’s La forza del destino in St Petersburg, for instance, or Diaghilev’s Ballets russes in Paris – the breadth, depth and mechanisms of musical exchange require further investigation. After all, it was during this time that Russia became increasingly entangled in international cultural networks, enabled by a combination of remnants of the past (aristocratic patronage, royal relationships, cosmopolitan circles) and its modernisation (improving transport links, new political ties).


To pursue this line of inquiry is to participate in the recent turn towards cosmopolitan, international or transnational histories of music. Such frameworks push against entrenched methodological nationalism: a trend under which Russian music history has particularly suffered. In his epic Oxford History of Western Music, Richard Taruskin sought to ‘“mainstream” Russian music and musicians into the general narrative’, rather than lumping them into chapters on national schools (Taruskin, 2011). In order to continue this project of understanding Russia in its wider global context, the means by which connections were made need to be established.


In addition to tracing the movements of people – singers, impresarios, touring troupes, conductors, translators, writers, composers – we encourage contributions that consider the participation of nonhuman actors, such as institutions, scores, libretti, transport links and media, which should emphatically be included in the social analysis of musical life. Through debate at this meeting, we seek to establish how existing networks were used for music, how new ones were built, and also what factors limited musical mobility. By raising these issues in a study day format, we aim to bring together those examining movement in different directions, and, in so doing, to draw Russianists and non-Russianists into conversation about international mobility.


We invite proposals for papers under the following and related themes:

  • Musical networks connecting Russia and the rest of the world (people, institutions, communities);
  • Musicians and other figures from musical life travelling to or from Russia;
  • Mediators of exchange (hosts, organisers, translators);
  • Collaboration across borders;
  • The mechanisms, materials, and particular conditions of cultural transfer in the long nineteenth century;
  • Music and diplomacy;
  • Shifting borders;
  • Barriers to musical mobility (politics, gender, technology, language).


This conference will take the form of a study day in which papers will be circulated in advance. We aim to collect a selection of contributions to be developed for publication in a themed journal issue.


The language of the conference is English.


Please send abstracts of no more than 300 words to Tamsin Alexander at by 30th September 2016. Notices of acceptance will be sent by 7th October 2016.



Tamsin Alexander (Goldsmiths, University of London)

Rutger Helmers (University of Amsterdam)


This study day is supported by the Centre for Russian Music at Goldsmiths.

6th Annual Meeting of the Historical Keyboard Society of North America (HKSNA) | From the Old World to the New



APRIL 26–29, 2017

Greenville, South Carolina, U.S.A.

The 6th annual meeting of the Historical Keyboard Society of North America (HKSNA) will be held from Wednesday, April 26 to Saturday, April 29, 2017 in Greenville, South Carolina. The meeting’s theme, “From the Old World to the New,” aims to encourage the study of keyboard music and keyboard making in England and the Americas from 1700–1850. Selected instruments from the Carolina Clavier Collection will be featured in this meeting.

Three days of papers presentations, lecture-recitals, and mini-recitals (April 27–29) will be accompanied by an exhibition of publications, recordings, and contemporary instrument makers’ work (April 26–28). Proposals for individual presentations or for themed sessions with multiple participants on any subject relating to historical keyboard instruments, their use and repertories from the Renaissance to the twenty-first century, are welcome.


Please submit proposals by electronic means only, via email to by October 20, 2016.  Individual presentations will be limited to 25 minutes. For papers and themed sessions, submit an abstract of no more than 300 words attached to the e-mail address as a Microsoft Word document. For mini-recitals and lecture-recitals, submit complete program information and a representative recording as an internet link or as an attached MP3 file. A variety of period and reproduction instruments will be available for those who are not intending to bring their own keyboards or to make arrangements to use exhibitors’ instruments. If you wish to use one or more of the instruments listed below, please kindly specify this in your proposal. All proposals must include short biographical statements (no more than 250 word) for all presenters and indicate any audio-visual/media needs.

Notification of accepted proposals will be made by November 20, 2016. Presenters must be members of HKSNA and must register for the conference. Presenters must also cover their own travel and other expenses. Further information, as it becomes available, will be posted on the website of HKSNA (


Patrick Hawkins, co-chair, Tom Strange, co-chair, Anne Acker, H. Joseph Butler, David Kelzenberg, Sonia Lee, Randall Love, Rebecca Pechefsky, Sally Todd

*          *          *

Below is a list of instruments that can be made available.


1570 Italian ottavino virginal c/e – e4 (scaled up one octave)

1748 Kirkman spinet (brass strung)

1749 Kirkman single manual (2×8)

1758 Kirkman double (2×8, 1×4, lute, no buff stop)

2015 Robert Brooke Italian harpsichord after Ridolfi (C to d'”)

2009 Anne Acker Flemish double 2009 (GG-d”’, 2×8′, 1×4′, buff, A392/415/440)

A French double copy

Square pianos:

1787 Broadwood

1799 Longman & Clementi

1830 William Geib

1834 Nunns & Clark

Grand pianos:

1825 Johann Schanz

1844 Collard & Collard

1845 Broadwood


2013 Anne Acker fretted clavichord (C-d”’)

Organ (Daniel Chapel, Furman University):

C.B. Fisk, Op. 121

Interfaces: tradition and technology in musical heritage work

Call for Proposals: Musikkarvkonferansen 2016

8 and 9 December 2016 at the National Library of Norway


The digital arts and humanities are evolving at a breathtaking pace.  Within music, this has opened up a spectrum of possibilities, from the strict and tradition-based editorial approaches of the publishing houses, to the newer emphasis upon experimental digital editions and artistic research in interplay with new multi-media resources.  However, not all potential beneficiaries of this evolving research environment feel fully enfranchised to take up the new opportunities for research and dissemination that digitization offers.


The conference aims to broaden knowledge and widen enfranchisement by looking more closely at the interfaces between the materials and technical means that digitization involves.


Musikkarvkonferansen 2016 brings together examples from international institutions and colleagues with key institutions and their music researchers and artists in the Nordic environment in order to interrogate more deeply the spectrum of digital possibilities, its particular nature in relation to the Nordic environment, and its global promise for the future of research and performance in music.


A key aim of the event is to overcome perceived divisions between the ‘lived’ experience of musical research and music-making and the nature – and potential – of digitally-based practice in the post-millennial era.  As well as helping those present to become more aware of existing practices, the conference aims to point the way forward to new, and as yet unrealized, modes of digital working.


Keynote presenters:


  • Elaine Chew – Professor of Digital Media & Pianist

School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science, Queen Mary University of London

  • Johannes Kepper – Administrative Chair of the MEI Board

Beethovens Werkstatt, Musicological Institute Detmold / Paderborn



The Committee for Musikkarvkonferansen 2016 invites proposals for papers, performances, expositions and other modes of presentation which explore the interfaces between the digital and the traditional in music research.  Proposals may be for 20-minute sessions, or 40-minute sessions.  Applications should also include any technical requirements.

The deadline for the submission of proposals is 12:00 CET, 1ST SEPTEMBER, 2016. Proposals can be emailed to


We look forward to welcoming you to this important event.


The Committee for Musikkarvkonferansen 2016:

Margrethe S. Bue, National Library of Norway

Darla Crispin, Norwegian Academy of Music

Astrid Kvalbein, University of Oslo

Arnulf Christian Mattes, University of Bergen

Bjarte Engeset, Norwegian Musical Heritage Project


Geography, Music, Space

One-day conference supported by the Institute of Musical Research

25 January 2017, Durham University

CFP Deadline: 15 September 2016


Keynote speaker: George Revill, The Open University


How does music shape diverse spaces, such as an immigration detention centre, a street performance, a military wives’ choir, or a family kitchen? Is there common ground to be found between researching the chants of a protest marcher, the beats of a commuter’s headphones and a soloist’s concert hall recital? What is the role of music in the construction of space, and vice versa? How and why do we research this?


This one-day conference will explore the relationship between space and how music is expressed, circulated and politicised to construct particular identities. It will also examine music at a non-representational level, with meaning emerging through affect and emotion, folded through a variety of embodied and spatially situated experiences. In short, it will consider the nuanced interplay between music and space.


The conference aims to bring together scholars working at the intersection of music and space, not only within the areas of musicology, ethnomusicology and geography, but also as approached from a variety of other disciplinary backgrounds (including politics, sociology, anthropology, philosophy). We especially encourage contributions from Postgraduates and Early Career Researchers.


20-minute papers addressing, but not limited to, the following themes are welcomed:


Music, materiality and space

– How is the materiality of music (a longitudinal wave; the materials that constitute a live performance; a recording on CD or mp3 file) significant in the construction of space?

– What does the material form that music takes bring to its circulation, governance and reception?


Music, the everyday and space

How do the materialities of music (or the sonic) fold through the multiple spaces of the everyday?

– In which social contexts are music and space mutually constitutive (performance, work, leisure)?

– What does a privileging of music bring to understanding the everyday? What other actors should be considered?


Music, the body and space

– How are spatialized identities formed through embodied acts of music such as singing, playing, and performing?

– How does music play into the construction of gendered bodies?


Music, the political and space

– What role does music have within contested, highly politicised spaces?

– What new spaces for politics open up through the circulation of music?

– How can we conceptualise the politics of music beyond textual analysis?


Researching music and space

– What methodological challenges and interdisciplinary opportunities arise from researching music and space?

– What does it mean to ‘do’ geographies of music?


Please send abstracts of no more than 250 words to Samuel Horlor at

Deadline: 15 September 2016


Successful applicants will be notified by the end of September. A limited number of travel bursaries will be available to Postgraduates or Early Career Researchers (those within three years of completing their PhD).

CIMCIM annual Conference 2017 and Fourth International Romantic Brass Symposium

The CIMCIM annual conference 2017 will take place in Basel and Bern – in collaboration with the Fourth Romantic Brass Symposium. The working title of the Conference is «Presentation, Preservation and Interpretation – Musical Instrument Collections challenged in the 21st Century».
Date: February 22–25, 2017

Programme overview (dated July 2016)

A Call for Papers is open until September 23, 2016.
By October 21, 2016, the programme will be published and registration will be open.

See also the symposium website