The New Traditional School in Scotland, phase 1

Project Details


Since 1984 traditional musicians in Scotland have been developing experimental creative practices that draw on 'the tradition' but move beyond its conventions and structures into innovative and extended compositions. There are now over 170 composers creating these musical works, usually in response to commissions from high profile festivals and organisations. Activity of this nature and scale has not been seen in Scotland before and there are similar examples of
artistic activity in European countries. It presents a new area for research, opportunities for further advancement of the practice, and considerable potential for further study.

In this project, the researcher continues the mapping of this unique compositional practice and its community up to 2021. Carries out in-depth interviews and analysis of existing musical works, to increase understanding of the key features of these compositions. Creative residencies featuring new and existing compositions provide the opportunity to contribute artistic knowledge and analyse creative processes.

Scores and recordings along with varied materials produced in the research will form the basis of two collections for preservation and accessibility: a music collection at the Scottish Music Centre, Glasgow and a collection/archive at the
School of Scottish Studies Archives and Centre for Research Collections, University of Edinburgh. Results from the research will be disseminated in a research paper or exposition on improvisation and traditional music and a monograph on tradition and creativity.

Both the findings and artistic and research materials will be of benefit to international scholars, particularly those from ethnomusicology and practice-based or artistic research, as well as practitioners, educators, and individuals and organisations supporting cultural development.

The combination of artistic research and ethnomusicological methods facilitates an early attempt to establish traditional arts in the emerging discipline of artistic research. This creates opportunities to explore aspects of practice, process and artistry that are best exposed through making art, as well as the opportunity for comparative and collaborative research between the traditional arts and other art forms.
Effective start/end date1/07/2331/12/24


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