Post-sonic perspectives on socially engaged compositional practices: composing ‘after sound’ and beyond music

Moorehouse, A, Matthews, H and Maia, O (2022) 'Post-sonic perspectives on socially engaged compositional practices: composing ‘after sound’ and beyond music.' Organised Sound. ISSN 1355-7718

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1017/S135577182200005X

Abstract

This article addresses the precedence given to sound in musical analysis and argues that socially engaged composers might reconsider the importance they place on sonic output and instead pay greater attention to how we critically engage with the subjects that stimulate our musical practice. G. Douglas Barrett’s theorisation of music ‘after sound’ is established as a crucial methodology, one that provides an important discourse around critical engagements that have largely been neglected in favour of investigations into abstracted sonic materials. The vocabulary provided by Barrett is, in this article, used to meaningfully appraise the impact of a situated musical performance and its dialogue with society. Specifically, the three authors collectively explore the implications of Barrett’s writing for the conception, formation and evaluation of their own socially engaged compositional practices. Subsequently, this discussion also illustrates the methods by which Barrett’s approach is instrumentalised as a compositional device for socially engaged composition, rather than as an analytical tool for already completed works. Finally, the authors conclude with an alternative exploration of what ultimately lies beyond a ‘music after sound’, one that problematises the notion of a specialist composer today.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Bath School of Music and Performing Arts
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1017/S135577182200005X
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2022 13:46
Last Modified: 30 Mar 2022 13:46
URI / Page ID: http://researchspace.bathspa.ac.uk/id/eprint/14688
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