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  4. Can Composition and Performance be Research? Critical Perspectives

Nov

25

Wednesday

Can Composition and Performance be Research? Critical Perspectives

5.30pm

Forums

Public

Location: Performance Space, College Building.

For further details please contact: Sam.MacKay.1@city.ac.uk

In this special research forum at City University, a group of panellists will lead a discussion on current debates about the relationship between practice and research. The discussion will centre on John Croft's recent and significant article 'Composition is not Research' (Tempo, 69/272 (April 2015), pp. 6-11) and a forthcoming article in response by Ian Pace.

Composers and performers in UK university music departments are often employed in full academic positions and are expected to produce research. Different institutions can have hugely differing perspectives on the research credentials of practice-based work, and the experiences and fortunes of such practitioners working in academia have varied correspondingly.

John Croft's article 'Composition is not Research' threw down a gauntlet in its rejection of the possibility that compositional outputs can be measured as research in the same manner as more conventional outputs. Croft called for an end to the integration of composers into existing research structures of universities, and a return to the idea of 'research equivalence' instead.

This article has generated a good deal of discussion on blogs and social media since its appearance, some of which has been markedly hostile. The December 2015 issue of Tempo will feature two articles in response, one by composer Camden Reeves, the other by City Head of Performance Ian Pace, entitled 'Composition and Performance can be, and often have been, Research'.

In this article, Pace provides an extended critique of Croft's arguments, drawing upon wider debates on practice-as-research from beyond the musical field, arguing that Croft's definitions of research are too narrow, that composition and performance frequently constitute research as much as any other types of outputs, and that the real issue is deriving equitable criteria for judging very different types of research outputs, though this is equally a problem between divergent types of written work.

Panellists

  • Christopher Fox (Professor of Composition at Brunel University and editor of Tempo)
  • Ian Pace (pianist and Lecturer in Music at City University)
  • Miguel Mera (composer and Head of the Department of Music at City University)
  • Annie Yim (pianist and DMA student at City University)
  • Christine Dysers (PhD student in Music at City University)
  • Camden Reeves (composer and Head of Music, University of Manchester)

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When & where

5.30pm - 7.30pmWednesday 25th November 2015

Performance Space College Building City, University of London St John Street London EC1V 4PB United Kingdom

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City, University of London

Northampton Square

London EC1V 0HB

United Kingdom

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.