Studying music in and as social interaction: ‘Improvising Duos’ project

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstract

Abstract / Description of output

This paper presents the methodology and some results from a British Academy-funded collaboration, the ‘Improvising Duos’ project. We recorded video, audio and kinematic data from 24 improvising musicians in 12 duo pairings, with the aim of analysing emergent properties of their joint performance. We set out to explore the extent to which observers could demonstrably judge ‘real’ versus ‘fake’ musician duos, thus making the behavioural manifestation of the musical interaction process into the object of analysis. We used 3D motion-capture animations of the duos to create a set of stimuli. These ten-second excerpts of duo performance included both authentic (‘real’) duos and but also ‘fake’ duos spliced from two different duo pairs. In an experiment, participants watched the animations and judged the authenticity of the improvising duo. Formally-trained musician participants were able to discriminate reliably between genuine versus synthetic duos.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2013
EventResearching music as process: methods and approaches - University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom
Duration: 22 Nov 201322 Nov 2013


ConferenceResearching music as process: methods and approaches
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • music performance
  • social interaction
  • nonverbal communication
  • improvisation


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