“Hearing” ahead of the sound: How musicians listen via proprioception and seen gestures in performance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article addresses the peculiar temporal challenges that musicians face in performance and its implications for perception. In a performance, there is routinely no time out, no possibility of stopping and redoing. Players have to “hear” before notes sound, so they can organize their bodies to fit in. My analysis identifies three strategies that players adopt to take the load off their ear. Players listen via the seen gestures of others that signify what should be heard/played. They hear the music by feeling the rhythmic pulse. Lastly, they hear ahead through their proprioceptive sense of how they are organizing their bodies to make a sound. These observations show how players’ sense of their sound, crucial to the achievement of social order in performance, is achieved through largely hidden phases that organize hearing in relation to what we typically conceptualize as other sensory modalities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalThe Senses and Society
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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