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Shared Creativity in Finnish Contemporary Music
Taina Riikonen, Marjaana Virtanen
Fördergeber - Sonstige;
The research project Shared Creativity in Finnish Contemporary Music concerns the well-kept secret of the western art music culture: the often close interaction between composers and performers an interaction which consists of open and subliminal communication, ritual and narcissist misbehaviour and many taboos. The focus of the project is on the composition and rehearsal processes of newly commissioned works of music. While studying the interactional situations in the different phases of the creation process, the stimuli that the participants give to one another are observed, recorded and deconstructed. The project concerns shared creativity not only during the composing and preparation processes but also during the rehearsals, during which revisions are often made.

The project studies not only the processes of "making" works of music but also the relation between the agencies of the composer and the performer: the construction and fracturing of the boundary between them. The starting point is to closely examine how the dichotomy manifests itself in the field: how the practices of art music challenge the everyday understanding of it. The project thus stresses the idea of creativity as shared. The idea resembles Taina Riikonen's and Marjaana Virtanen's anthology Musiikin ja teatterin tekijöitä [The Authors in Music and Theater] (2005), in which "authorship" in art in music and theater was studied as shared among composers, performers, directors and actors. In the current project, other agents besides composers and performers must be postulated; the role of sound technicians, for example, is frequently crucial in contemporary compositions.

Original is the fieldwork component to the study. The approach to the analysis of composer-performer interaction is characterized by the application of ethnographic and socio-linguistic methods such as observation and interview: the interactive situations, rehearsals and consequent performances are observed and recorded and the participants interviewed. The participants are invited to be a part of the deconstruction sessions. The creation process is thus examined from a perspective that enables to combine studies on the onthology of works to a treatment of empirical research material. The approach does not only encourage a radical re-interpretation of the work-concept" in music, but also a re-interpretation of the roles of the agents participating in the creation process. The approach provides empirical fundament to such re-interpretations. Since the creative processes are studied in practice, through fieldwork and ethnographic and socio-linguistic data, the study takes on a different direction from the increasingly vivid theoretical discussion on the topic.


Finanziert durch J. & A. Wihuri Foundation und Finnische Akademie


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