CFP: Musical Topics and Performance Practice, Univ. of Melbourne, 1-2 Jun 2023

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Mar 2, 2023, 2:01:46 PM3/2/23
Over the past four decades, the theory of musical topics has evolved into a powerful tool for studying the construction of meaning and expression in music. Even though Ratner himself dedicated an essay outlining the application of topical analysis to the performance of Mozart's piano sonatas (Ratner 1991), the relationship between musical topics and performance has only recently begun to receive attention from both scholars and performers.

This Symposium seeks to contribute to this developing field by examining further the practical implications of topical awareness for performance practice. We welcome papers on specific case studies addressing the conference theme. The following are offered as suggestions: the use of topical analysis as a tool for artistic interpretation and performance decisions; musical topics and HIP (historical performance practice); the affordances of topical analysis in the performance practice of twentieth- and twenty first-centuries art music; topics and eloquent performance; musical topics and culturally sensitive performance; musical topics and the performance of jazz, rock, and other popular genres.

We encourage submissions from scholars and performers working in all musical genres and time periods. Papers may be theoretical, analytical, or performance-based. Topic-related performances with a brief verbal introduction are also invited. Presentations will be allocated 20 minutes followed by 10 minutes discussion.

The keynote will be delivered by Dr Julian Hellaby, editor of the recently published Musical Topics and Musical Performance (Routledge, 2023), which will be launched at the symposium. The event will take place on June 1-2, at the Conservatorium’s new building, the Ian Potter Southbank Centre, located in one of the most culturally vibrant areas of Melbourne.

Submission Guidelines:

Abstracts should be no more than 250 words and include a title, author name(s), institutional affiliation, and email address. Please send your submission by March 20, 2023, to symposium.mtpp -at- Notifications of acceptance will be sent by April 5th, 2023. For any questions about the symposium, please contact Dr David Tieri via david.tieri -at-

We look forward to your contributions.

Prof Melanie Plesch, PhD
Symposium Convenor
The University of Melbourne 
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