Composing for musical theatre: approaches to interdisciplinary collaboration

Mallett, A (2018) Composing for musical theatre: approaches to interdisciplinary collaboration. PhD thesis, Bath Spa University.

Abstract

This study investigates how a composer negotiates the transition from previous solo working practices into an interdisciplinary setting, through the creation of four original works of musical theatre. Experiences of composing within three contrasting collaborative models are considered within a framework of socio-psychological, organisational and creative collaboration theory, and cross-referenced with interview evidence from contemporary musical theatre composers. A five-stage process in the development of a collaborative musical theatre project is presented, illustrating key factors influencing each phase. The musical theatre environment is shown to be an ideal setting for both research into collaborative creativity, and the nurturing of collaborative skill. By consciously exploiting diversity as a resource, the composer can both enrich their compositional practice and learn to collaborate more effectively. Auto-ethnographic research can further enhance this development, with the mental act of self-observation fostering a sense of self-awareness that promotes innovative approaches to the compositional process. The role of composer-researcher demands a flexibility of thought and approach that supports the duality required to effectively shift between collaborative and solo contexts, and the microcosm and macrocosm of the show.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Note:

This thesis is composed of a single hard bound critical component of contextualising research, as well as the creative component, which contains four separate wire-bound collections of musical scores and lyrics for musical theatre, and a set of appendices.

The Witchfinder Project
Paperwork: The Musical
Whispers of the Heart
Moulin Blue

Thesis supervised by Prof James Saunders, Dr Miranda Lundskaer-Nielsen and Dr Joe Bennett.

Keywords: creative practice, music, musical theatre, composer, composition, musical composition, collaboration, creative collaboration theory, skill diversity, collaborative creativity, collaborative skill, solo working practices, auto-ethnographic research, creative research, contemporary musical theatre, interdisciplinary research, case study, remote collaboration, cabaret, FE musical theatre
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2018 15:43
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2018 15:43
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