MusicExperimentX: Transdisciplinary Encounters in and Beyond Music is a research project in the field of creative music performance. In it, performance is regarded as an independent form of art: independent from works of music, from concepts and practices of musical interpretation, and from authoritative texts, instruments, and traditions. The project aims at reconfiguring musical practices, most prominently at merging the roles of composer, instrumentalist, and performer into one figure: the operator, a multitasking inventive person, intertwining, fabricating and “machining” unexpected connections between heterogeneous musical, artistic, and conceptual materials. The project challenges dominant modes of thinking about music, while offering concrete tools, methodologies and strategies for the making of imaginative music performances.
Whereas in the traditional approach to Western notated art music performance is regarded as cultivated presentation or reverential representation of pre-existing, well-defined works and practices, MusicExperimentX: Transdisciplinary Encounters in and Beyond Music considers performance as a privileged locus for problematisation, significantly situating the practice of music beyond music. Musical objects and entities are to be questioned, and not uncritically reproduced and consumed. Exposing stratified musical entities (such as musical works, musical instruments, practices, or theoretical reflections), in dialogue with other kinds of things and artefacts, this project fosters innovation, aiming at the production of aesthetic and epistemic shiftings. The making of music becomes both a critical and a constructive act. Critical in the sense that it renegotiates the boundaries of pre-existing knowledges and practices. Constructive in that, through practice, it creates anew its own conditions and materialities.
MusicExperimentX: Transdisciplinary Encounters in and Beyond Music will design, develop, and realize several experimental performances, some of which in collaboration with leading music ensembles from Belgium, Germany, Austria, The Netherlands and Italy. It will publish diverse multimedia packages, two monographs, and four peer-reviewed articles. In addition to artists and researchers at different levels of experience and expertise (senior, postdoc, and doc researchers), the project will also include doctoral students from the docARTES programme.