‘Music Performance as creation’ — 2nd Edition of Nova Contemporary Music Meeting (NCMM)

Call for papers

Nova Contemporary Music Meeting

2nd Edition


Nova Contemporary Music Meeting (NCMM) is a biennial, 3-day international conference launched by the Contemporary Music Research Group (GIMC) of CESEM (Centre for the Study of the Sociology and Musical Aesthetics at Nova University, Lisbon) and focused on a variety of questions relating to music since the beginning of the 20th century.

Music today is more diverse than ever. The variety of genres, practices, techniques, technologies, systems of dissemination and forms of reception, brings to a new context in which the foundation of previous assumptions is shaken, and new paradigms are emerging. Music from the past, as well as from the present, is now omnipresent in our society, from the concert hall to the museum, from the media to public spaces, to private listening with headphones. As a result of each one of these and other situations, studying music is now challenging and depends on a multiplicity of artistic and scientific domains.

In this context, NCMM was conceived as a contribution to the development of multidisciplinary and collaborative research in the field of contemporary music, and it consists in a research meeting that bring together researchers, musicologists, composers and performers, working with a diversity of areas related to contemporary music. With a special focus on the articulation between musical practices and research activities, whether theoretical or practice-based, NCMM intends to respond to the current challenges of contemporary music, in its artistic and research practices, offering a platform for proposing, discussing and disseminating knowledge in a variety of fields.

Each edition will focus on a special main subject, but NCMM will also be open to other topics.

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Call for papers

Main Topic

Musical Performance as creation

The main theme of this edition is to discuss the musical performance in our days. From the concert hall to the streaming systems, from the street to the television, from live to recordings, the performance act is a creative one that transposes the creator’s musical ideas and moods to the audience. Regardless of the multiplicity of genres, media and contexts, including unexpected and terribly challenging situation like the current pandemic context, discuss performance is essential. Moreover, discussing musical performance as a creative act includes considering its interpretation, the diversity of techniques and skills, the technologies involved, the performance spaces, the auditory contexts, the public’s willingness and accessibility to it, and many other determining variables.

Considering the above-mentioned, it is pertinent to ask: what means performing music today and in what sense or way it can be seen as a creative act? What is the role of the performer in today’s musical world? Can we continue to talk about “performing music”? Or should we consider using other expressions according to each particular situation? What is the role of musical performance in the context of a museum exhibition, sound art event or even in installations? Can a sound artist be considered a music performer? Can real-time coding or free improvisation be considered as forms of musical performance? Can the creativity embodied in musical performance influence the development of the community and society?  How can musical performance be relevant in situations of social crisis and depression?

It is within the context of this complex problem that we encourage composers, musicologists, performers, teachers, philosophers and other researchers to present proposals covering the whole range of questions involved in this subject. Students, post-doctoral, and early-career researchers are particularly encouraged.

NCMM Themes:

The conference is also open to other topics related to contemporary music studies and practices. Thus, we encourage the submission of papers related to any aspects of the field, including, but not limited to, composition, music and technology, auditory perception, music history, analysis and theory, musical genres and practices, as well as cultural issues.

  1. Musical composition practices, performance and reception:
    1. Composition techniques and technologies, including new instruments and unconventional tools and means.
    1. Real time composition and interactive music, including live coding, electronic, interactive and computer music.
    1. Collaborative composition, free improvisations and open composition.
    1. Practice-based research in music, including composition, performance and collaborative musical activities.
  2. Music history, theory and analysis:
    1. What are the challenges of contemporary music for musical analysis and history?
    1. What new paradigms, theories and techniques are emerging?
    1. What balance is there/should there be between theory and practice in general and specific musicological methodologies?
    1. Does contemporary music need new techniques, methodologies and specifically designed tools, or is what already exists sufficient?
  3. Philosophy of music and aesthetics:
    1. What philosophical points of view can be brought to bear on aesthetic and technical transformations in contemporary music?
    1. What of epistemology, semiotics and phenomenological studies of contemporary music?
  4. Musicology, intertextuality and authenticity:
    1. How to discuss intertextuality and authenticity in the context of contemporary music, and what issues should be considered.
    1. What about critical, systematic and empirical musicological methodologies and practices in contemporary music?
  5. Auditory perception and cognition:
    1. Issues of music cognition, semiotics and the experience of contemporary music
    1. How to study the relationship between the composer’s intentions and the perceptual experience of music.
  6. Musical sound transcription, representation and music notation:
    1. What new questions does contemporary music raise in terms of transcription, representation and music notation?
    1. New tools and methods of transcription and representation of sound.
    1. How and which musical sound representations can become tools for musical art creation and research.
  7. Sound technologies and the music industry:
    1. Genres and diversity of style.
    1. The influence of industry and technology on musical aesthetics.
    1. Broadcasting and sampling: repetition and variation as a means to become a musical hit.
    1. Popular music and other contemporary arts in relation to music
    1. What musical issues do internet communities, group compositions and telematics raise?
  8. Music and image:
    1. What of music and “moving images” on TV, cinema, Internet and other kinds of multimedia?
    1. What of the musicological challenges of music for video games?
  9. Sound art, installations and exhibitions:
    1. What musicological discourse can there be for music outside the concert hall?
    1. How and why study sound art and music/sound installations in a musicological context?
    1. What can be the role of music in museum exhibitions?
  10. Soundscape, sound ecology:
    1. How, and with what terminology, can one discuss soundscapes and sound ecology in a musical domain?
    1. Virtual auditory space creation, sound ecology and sonification.
  11. Documentation and preservation of musical heritage:
    1. What problems are there concerning the preservation and documentation of contemporary music works?
    1. How and why is the performability of some contemporary music works challenging and sometimes not viable?
  12. Music and emergent cultures and societies, cultural heritage and inclusive societies:
    1. Anthropology, cultural and cross-cultural studies in contemporary music.
    1. Questions of unity, diversity, plurality, multicultural resources, hybridization, and local music in a globalized world.
    1. What problems arise concerning music criticism, the sociology of music and culture?

Guidelines for Submission

The deadline for submission of paper proposals is 7 January 2021 midnight EST. Notification of acceptance will be emailed to applicants by 15 February 2021.

A submission should consist of a zipped folder containing:

  • The paper abstract in English  (500 words maximum, including 2 to 3 keywords), headed by the author’s name(s), organizational affiliation (if any), contact address, telephone, and email address, in PDF;
  • A short CV (2 pages max.)
  • A list of main publications (up to 10 entries), in PDF.
  • A short biography (up to 150 words), in PDF;

Submission are to be made directly by email to: ncmm.contemporarymusic[at]gmail.com

The abstract as well as the short biography should be ready for publication if the paper is accepted. A programme containing the paper abstracts and biographies will be published on the NCMM website <http://fabricadesites.fcsh.unl.pt/ncmm/> and made available at the conference.

Please send a copy (cc) to: imp[at]fcsh.unl.pt

Submissions from students and early-career postdoctoral researchers are particularly encouraged.

Paper presentation guidelines:

  • Each paper presentation will be 20 minutes (including a 5 minute question period).
    Papers are to be given in English.
  • Standard presentation equipment will be provided including a video projector and stereo sound system. Please bring your own VGA or HDMI connector, as well as a mini-jack output adaptor if it is not included on your device.
  • A computer will be available in the conference rooms.

For any further queries, please contact us: ncmm.contemporarymusic[at]gmail.com

TCPM 2019 – Tracking the Creative Process in Music


International Conference, 5th edition


Lisbon, Portugal

October 9 to 11th, 2019




The TCPM conference brings together researchers interested in artistic creativity and the study of processes of musical and sound creation, of the past and present. Researchers working on this cluster of problems from a wide variety of disciplines (history, music analysis, psychology, philosophy, cognitive science, sociology, ethnomusicology, anthropology, etc.) are invited to assess the different methodologies developed in the last thirty years in their respective areas from an interdisciplinary perspective. Each approach contributes in its own way to the advancement of our understanding of the procedures, techniques, knowledge and know-how employed by musicians involved in creative projects.

Following the epistemological paradigm shifts that musicology underwent at the end of the last century, the notion of ‘creative process’ has been enriched. Sketch studies have extended their scope beyond notated works of art music. Today this field includes all contemporary musical repertories as well as the oral, technological and collaborative dimensions of the creative process in music. There is growing interest, for example, in the function of improvisation and of gesture in the creative process, in the collective and collaborative dimensions of artistic work, in the redefinition of the roles of the composer and the performer, in the art of studio production and in the strategies of documentation, transmission and future performance of works involving technology, etc. The complexity and the multidimensionality of this field of study require new analytical tools and new research methods at the crossroads of analytical musicology, the social science and humanities and other academic disciplines.

This broadening of the field also provides a new context for the study of works and composers from the Western musical canon. Whether based on historical archives or on the collection of empirical data, studies of the creative process in music share many of the same methodological requirements, descriptive vocabulary and models of creative action. This conference therefore aims to be a forum in which the most recent findings from a broad range of research agendas can be presented, discussed, and assembled.

It is within the context of this complex context that we encourage composers, musicologists, ethnomusicologists, performers, teachers, philosophers and other interested researchers, to contribute to proposals covering the whole range of questions involved in this subject. Students, postdoctoral and early-career researchers are particularly encouraged.

Call For Contributions

Each conference contribution proposal must include the following elements:

  • The anonymous paper abstract proposal in English, in PDF;
  • The title of the proposed conference contribution;
  • The abstract, of 400 to 500 words, should present the subject, the theories and models of the creative processes described in the talk, the goals, the data and sources, the methodology used and the results of the study;

NOTE: No name, affiliation or any other element that identify the author(s) should be included on this version.

  • The full paper abstract proposal in English, in PDF;
  • Each conference contribution proposal should be headed by the author(s) name(s), institutional affiliation(s) (if any), email address(es) of the presenters;
  • The title of the proposed conference contribution;
  • Preferred format(s) (For conference presentation formats, see below)
  • The abstract, of 400 to 500 words, should present the subject, the theories and models of the creative processes described in the talk, the goals, the data and sources, the methodology used and the results of the study;
  • A short CV (up to 2 pages), including a list of main publications (up to 10 entries), in PDF;
  • A short biography (up to 150 words, ready to be published on the Conference Booklet), in PDF;
  • A personal or project website (optional).

Guidelines for Submission

Formats for the proposed conference contribution:

  • Talk (20-minute talk followed by 10 minutes for questions and answers and changeover);
  • Talk session (3 distinct talks under a common topic). Each talk must be submitted as a standard contribution, specifying “talk session” and the session title as preferred format;
  • Poster presentation (poster displayed during the whole conference, with 10 minute oral presentation during a dedicated poster session);

Please note that the organizers will decide on the final contribution format according to the nature and number of accepted contributions.

  • The proposals, consisting in a zipped folder, must be submitted to tcpm2019[at]gmail.com
  • The deadline for proposals of papers is January 6th, 2019, 23h59 UTC.
  • They will be evaluated and reviewed by the scientific committee of the conference, composed of specialists from different areas of expertise and international institutions.
  • Notification of acceptance will be emailed to applicants by March 15th, 2019, 2019.

Student Bursaries

The TCPM organizers will offer bursaries to the best student proposals. These will be announced on the TCPM website <http://tcpm2019.fcsh.unl.pt> and communicated to the proponent before the registration period opening.


Important Dates

Deadline for submission of proposals: January 6th, 2019, 23h59 UTC
Notification of acceptance: March 15th, 2019
Revised proposal submission: April 28th, 2019
Registration opening: May 15th, 2019

TCPM conference in Lisbon: October, 9 to 11, 2019

A special session included a musical event and cultural activities, will be   organized on October 10th 2019.

Scientific Committee

Andreas C. Lehmann (Universität Würzburg)
Christine Siegert (Beethoven-Haus, Bonn)
Emily Dolan (Harvard University)
Germán Toro Pérez (Composer)
Giorgio Sanguinetti (Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”)
Hilary Poriss (Northeastern University)
Isabel Pires (CESEM — FCSH, NOVA University)
Jane Davidson (University of Melbourne)
Karen Collins (University of Waterloo)
Laudan Nooshin (City, University of London)
Manuel Pedro Ferreira (CESEM — FCSH, NOVA University)
Marc Battier (Université Paris IV Paris-Sorbonne)
Margaret Barrett (University of Queensland)
Mark Butler (Northwestern University)
Martin Kaltenecker (Paris-Diderot University)
Miguel Mera (City University London)
Peter Elsdon (University of Hull)
Robert Hasegawa (McGill University)
São José Côrte-Real (INET-md — FCSH, NOVA University)
Stephanie Jordan (University of Roehampton)
Valérie Dufour (FNRS, Université Libre de Bruxelles)

Organising Committee:

Isabel Pires (CESEM — FCSH, NOVA University)
São José Côrte-Real (INET-md — FCSH, NOVA University)
Nicolas Donin, APM, STMS Labs (IRCAM-CNRS-UPMC), Paris

Organising Institutions:

CESEM Research Centre: FCSH, NOVA University, Lisbon
INET-md Research Centre: FCSH, NOVA University, Lisbon
IRCAM (Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique), Paris

Presentation equipement conditions:

  • Standard presentation equipment will be provided, including a video projector and stereo sound system. Please bring your own VGA or HDMI connector, as well as a mini-jack output adaptor if it is not included with your device.
  • A computer will be available in the conference rooms.

TCPM 2019 conference website address: http://tcpm2019.fcsh.unl.pt
For any further queries, please contact us: to tcpm2019[at]gmail.com