TUTTI! - Music Composition as Dialogue
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As an engineer, when I could not comprehend a physical phenomenon, I turned to mathematics. As a mathematician, when I could not link sciences to humanity, I turned to music. As a music composer, I no longer see things, I see others. The novel method of music composition presented herein is a first comprehensive framework, system and architectonic template relying on the ideologies of Mikhail Bakhtin's dialogism as well as on research in auditory perception and cognition to create music dialogue as a means of including and engaging participants in musical communication. Beyond immediate artistic intent, I strive to compose music that fosters inclusiveness and collaboration as a relational social gesture in hope that it might incite people and society to embrace their differences and collaborate with the 'others' around them. After probing aesthetics, communication studies and sociology, I argue that dialogism reveals itself well-suited to the aims of the current research. With dialogism as a guiding philosophy, the chapters then look at the relationship between music and language, perception as authorship, intertextuality, the interplay of imagination and understanding, means of arousal in music, mimesis, motion in music and rhythmic entrainment. Employing findings from Gestalt psychology, psychoacoustics, auditory scene analysis, cognition and psychology of expectation, the remaining chapters propose a cognitively informed polyphonic music composition method capable of reproducing the different constituents of dialogic communication by creating and organizing melodic, harmonic, rhythmic and structural elements. Music theory and principles of orchestration then move to music composition as examples demonstrate how dialogue scored between voice-parts provides opportunities for performers to interact with each other and, consequently, engage listeners experiencing the collaboration. As dialogue can be identified in various works, I postulate that the presented Dialogical Music Composition Method can also serve as a method of music analysis. This personal method of composition also supplies tools that other musicians can opt to employ when endeavouring to build balanced dialogue in music. If visibility is key to identity, then composing music that potentially enters into dialogue which each and every voice promotes 'humanity' through inclusivity, yielding a united Tutti !