Music is a footnote to tuning: microtonality and the practice of intonation in contemporary string performance

The Dome, Bramall Music Building
Arts and Law, Research
Wednesday 9th November 2016 (13:00)
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  • Music Colloquium series 2016-2017

Speaker: Mira Benjamin

Venue: The Dome, Bramall Music Building (3rd Floor)


The late, beloved musicologist Bob Gilmore once posed the question, 'Is the designation “microtonality” still useful today?’ In this talk I’ll offer some reflections on that question from the perspective of contemporary string performance practice. I’ll discuss the practice of string intonation, and explore how a microtonally-based understanding of intonation can inform and enrich performative decisions across various approaches to notation, with examples from scores by John Cage, Martin Arnold and Scott McLaughlin.