Re: CIMESP-Results Fwd:

Subject: Re: CIMESP-Results Fwd:
From: Kevin Austin (
Date: Sun Nov 06 2005 - 00:47:50 EST

The "what the composer thinks" and "what the listener hears" reminds
me that I put vinegar in the batter for my pancakes, but the vinegar
cannot be tasted as if it were on fish'n'chips.

When I listen to music, or sounds, or ea, or whatever, I hear (the)
form(s) -- but I listen as a composer. When I was a young child, I
didn't hear the form(s), but again, when I was a young child, I
didn't "taste" the salt on my fish and chips.

I started to hear small scale form(s) before I was 10 (without formal
musical training), and understood the concept of repetition /
variation before I got to high school.

The hearing and organizing was hierarchical in nature, starting at
the "micro" level, and progressing to larger and larger regions.
Slowly, in time, this mode of listening extended beyond the limits of
individual pieces and by the time I was 16 or so, I heard 'rounded
binary' (Minuet and Trio) forms with relatively little difficulty. I
was / am a structuralist.

(The process of perceptual "separation" of elements requires creating
'windows of time', as time is not perceived, IMV, in a 'linear'
[momentary] sense.)

This way of hearing I apply to pedagogy, at the level of the
individual class and at the level of multi-year curricular design.

In my mind I create vast personal "reality maps". The more detail I
have about the matters at hand, the more precisely I map similarities
and differences in new pieces / materials / ideas.

For large-scale forms I tend to the view "keep it simple".

There are two basic types of forms for me, based upon an idea called:
"energy analysis". This concept begins with the idea of whether or
not new energy is put during the execution of an event.

At the level of (for example) instruments, the struck bell is a form
of the (single) impulse variety. Energy enters the system and is lost
over time. (A transient source.) A bowed violin is a system that
energy is constantly added, and when the energy ceases to be added,
the system decays and collapses (complex envelope). This second
'type' can be applied to many things, including historical periods.
(The first type is applicable in cooking rice for example, where the
rice is dropped into boiling water, and then removed from the stove.)

Through continuous (self-)education, I have learned to apply this
model to much around me, and am able to assess situations based upon
this idea, and make (my own) predictions about the future -- which
may or may not be right.

My experience says that there is no (single) listener, or single
model for how listening (perception / interpretation / understanding)

It strikes me that when Eliot looks for "new ideas", it is somehow
reflecting where his mind is, as my writing reflects where my mind is.



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