Loading presentation...

Present Remotely

Send the link below via email or IM


Present to your audience

Start remote presentation

  • Invited audience members will follow you as you navigate and present
  • People invited to a presentation do not need a Prezi account
  • This link expires 10 minutes after you close the presentation
  • A maximum of 30 users can follow your presentation
  • Learn more about this feature in our knowledge base article

Do you really want to delete this prezi?

Neither you, nor the coeditors you shared it with will be able to recover it again.


Music in Three Dimesions

A dialogic conception of music which conceives of the aesthetic, praxial and social dimensions of music as an integrated whole.

Dave Camlin

on 7 April 2018

Comments (0)

Please log in to add your comment.

Report abuse

Transcript of Music in Three Dimesions

Praxial /

Aesthetic /

Dualist - oppositional
Dialogic - creative tension
Music in
Three Dimensions

A philosophical perspective emerging through Action Research 2011-15 into my professional situation: developing undergraduate music learning within a cultural institution [Sage Gateshead] whose artistic programme is conceived as consisting equally of music performance on the one hand, and music learning and participation (L&P) on the other.
07580 078924

A dialogic way of conceiving of musical practices, recognising the inter-dependence of three complementary dimensions of music:

Musial dimensions (aesthetic and praxial) unified by foregrounding of
social impact
concerned with ‘the beauty or ‘meaning’ of [music‘s] sonorous forms’
(D. J. Elliott & Silverman, 2013)
music is, ‘a human practice that is procedural in essence’
(D. J. Elliott, 1995, pp. 247–249)
Music Performance and Participation held in a dialogic ‘creative tension’ with each other
Helps to resolve some of the philosophical challenges contained in the long-standing ‘aesthetic vs. praxial’ debate, by recognising that both of these dimensions of music are equally valid and important, and the interplay – or ‘dialogic space’ (Wegerif, 2012, p. 158) – between them helps to create a richer context of musical meaning, especially when understood in relation to the ‘social’ aspects of music, which helps embed that meaning deeply within people’s lived experience of music.
Musicality is something which has been present in all human cultures for the 60,000 year history of our species (Dunbar, 2012; Mithen, 2007) and only relatively recently separated in western cultures with the evolution of ‘aesthetic’ forms (D. J. Elliott & Silverman, 2013; Ranciere, 2003, pp. 115–133). Or, as David Byrne puts it, ‘before recorded music became ubiquitous, music was, for most people, something we did.’ (Byrne, 2012).
Quality is contingent:
Using other ‘real world’ situations as sites for undergraduate learning would result in similar epistemological developments, which might in turn support the Arts sector to develop stronger arguments about the value of the Arts in Society.
Traditional models of music education set up the professional identity of Music Educator as the '
of a professional identity as a performing musician (Bennett, 2012). 'Integrative' conceptions of music sees musicians more as
holistic agents
, with the knowledge and skills to be able to operate competently and effectively across music’s different dimensions.

When we articulate ‘real world’ practices in academic terms,
new knowledge
Situating HE provision inside ‘real world’ cultural sector practices represents a
virtuous circle
of knowledge development: the more ‘productive’ knowledge of the organisation’s practices inform the undergraduate curriculum, and the more theoretical knowledge used to critically underpin the undergraduate curriculum articulates the complexities of the organisation’s situation which, almost by definition, have evolved in more practical ways without necessarily being grounded in academic knowledge.
Musicians need more than just the traditional skills of musicianship
if they are to form and sustain long-term careers in music.
Helps to resolve dichotomous positions
of an 'integrative' / dialogic conception of music
‘active engagement with music impacts beyond the development of musical skills’
(Hallam, 2015, p. 1)
"The wealthiest, better educated and least ethnically diverse 8% of the population accounts for 44% of attendances to live music."
(Warwick Commission 2015)
Dialogical conceptions impact positively on pedagogy by foregrounding the learners' perspective, and 'voices' other than your own.
in order to understand issues of quality in music, they have to be understood first in the context within which they occur.
i.e. in order to say whether any given instance of
is 'any good', we need to know what it is 'good
Music is for listening to: it requires ‘listeners’
Musicians need to be skilled at manipulating and organising sound
Technical skills are the foundation of good music-making
Virtuosity is the benchmark of musical excellence
Music is for doing
Music is a fun social activity that brings people together and unites us in a common purpose
Everyone is a musician, and is able to participate at a level appropriate to them
The role of the musician in society is to broaden access to music and ensure as many people as possible are included
Music consists of a series of 'acts of hospitality’
Music differs around the world in terms of
Audience – consumer
Performer – audience
Composer – performer
Object – communally held memory
It is the ACT of making music that gives it value
Everyone deserves music - it’s our birthright - it helps us realise our creative potential as human beings
It has a positive impact on our psychological well-being, confidence, self-esteem, empathy, physical health, as well as facilitating increases in social cohesion and social capital (Arts Council England, 2014; Hallam, 2015; Matarasso, 1997; Neelands, University of Warwick, & Heywood, 2015; Hunter et al, 2016)
It shifts our mood, and helps us cope with life’s difficulties
It helps us develop attitudes of cooperation and enhances our social networks
c. 400 concerts a year across all genres, inc. Royal Northern Sinfonia resident chamber orchestras
c. 100 musicians working with
c. 18,000 individuals each year,
from pre-natal to end of life, in
formal, non-formal and informal situations
in and out of the building, inc.
HE programmes inc.
UK's first BA (Hons) Community Music
How do I / we
shape / control the sound
to achieve something emotionally 'affective'? What aesthetic effect am I / are we aiming for?
techniques / skills
do I / we need to deploy / develop to achieve this?
How do I
refine my awareness
to express myself clearly and effectively, whilst listening to all the other voices?
How do I
support others
to express themselves?
How do we
work together
for maximum aesthetic impact?
How do I / we interpret the work, respecting the contraints of the work (e.g. composer intention, previous recording, performances, religious / spiritual / social traditions)
Who's in the room? What do they want (today)? What are they capable of? How can I / we build on their previous experience?
What do they need / expect from me? How can /do I inspire them?
Who isn't in the room? Why not?
How can I make this easier / more accessible?
When do I direct? When to facilitate? When to delegate? When to just 'get out of the way'?
How do I facilitate a 'safe space'?
How do I make space for other people's creativity?
What are the expectations of others in terms of content, outcomes?
Who am I?
What's the purpose? Why are we doing this?
Is it any good?
do I know? Do I know what it's good
How do I evidence it in a way that's helpful to influence change / future work / funding?
Where's my comfort zone? And how do I operate outside of it?
Which dimension/s am I naturally inclined / oriented towards? Is it appropriate here?
How do I strengthen the other/s?
I do? Why don't I do that?
What am I good at? What are my skills best suited for? What can I / do I want to develop?
Who else do I want to work with on this? Whose perspective / skills / insight would be useful?
How is love - the aesthetic of relationship - manifest in my work?
What difference do I make in the world?
What change in society will this contribute to?
What do I hope will be the impact of this?
Why do I think that?
How will I know if / when we achieve that?
Why is
a good way of doing this? What else would be?
Where are the boundaries?
What are the ethical considerations?
What do I imagine is the legacy?
or Re-integrative?
critical reflection
: practice as an orientation toward each dimension
"An aesthetic experience is one in which your senses are operating at their peak., when you're present in the current moment, when you're resonating with the excitement of [whatever] you're experiencing; when you are fully alive." (Robinson 2010)
'Dialogue is the encounter between [people], mediated by the world, in order to name the world. If it is in speaking their word that people, by naming the world, transform it, dialogue imposes itself as the way by which they achieve significance as human beings. The naming of the world, which is an act of creation and re-creation, is not possible if it is not infused with love. Love is at the same time the foundation of dialogue and dialogue itself.'
(Freire 1970, pp. 69-70)
Cooke, D. (1959). Language of Music. 1st ed edition. Oxford University Press.
Langer, S. (1990). Philosophy in a New Key: Study in the Symbolism of Reason, Rite and Art. 3rd Revised edition edition. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.
Meyer, L.B. (1961). Emotion and Meaning in Music. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Reimer, B. (1970). Philosophy of Music Education. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall.
Meaning is placed in the structure of the music and is primarily intellectual.
Music is 'not feeling, but beautifully patterned sound' (Hanslick 1854, in Bowman 1998).
'Music is powerless to express anything at all' (Stravinsky, Poetics of Music 1942)
'Art is there to help us understand things which are outside of itself - The function of the art work is to remind you of, or tell you about, or help you understand, or make you experience, something which is extra-artistic, that is, something which is outside the created thing and the artistic qualities which make it a created thing. In music, the sounds should serve as a reminder of, or a clue to, or a sign of something extramusical; something separate from the sounds and what the sounds are doing’
Music as 'universal symbolic language' (Langer 1990)
Meaning is placed in the expressive qualities of the music itself. It is the personal response to the formal construction and the referential aspects of the composition that give it value.
‘The act of musicking establishes in the place where it is happening a set of relationships, and it is in those relation­ships that the meaning of the act lies. They are to be found not only be­tween those organized sounds which are conventionally thought of as being the stuff of musical meaning but also between the people who are taking part, in whatever capacity, in the performance; and they model, or stand as metaphor for, ideal relationships as the participants in the perfor­mance imagine them to be: relationships between person and person, be­tween individual and society, between humanity and the natural world and even perhaps the supernatural world’
(Small, 1998)
Music is a discourse which permeates all levels of society – we cannot understand ourselves or our society without understanding it: ‘music should be considered as a language system that is vital to the ways in which we construct meaning, culture and ideology… [we need to] engage with the complex webs of meaning which arise as part of making music’. Philpott 2012 p.27
High Art
Everyday creativity
Emphasis on technical accuracy (telic), expressivity, immersion and spontaneity (paratelic) and virtuosity
Listen attentively, don't talk / dance; appreciate virtuosity; applaud at end of performance;

classical recital


Everyone (potentially) participates, by singing, playing or dancing - focus on joining in and having fun (paratelic);
pub singalong, community celebration, drumming circle, performance rehearsal, Mandela memorial
Short, open, redundantly repeated forms

‘feathered’ beginnings and endings
Intensive variation
Individual virtuosity downplayed
Highly repetitive
Few dramatic contrasts
Wide intonation system
Constancy of rhythm / meter / groove
Dense textures

Piece as a collection of resources refashioned anew in each performance like the form, rules and practiced moves of a game
Closed, scripted forms, longer forms and shorter performances of the form available
Organised beginnings and endings
Extensive variation available
Individual virtuosity emphasised
Repetition balanced with contrast
Contrasts of many types as design
Narrow intonation system
Variability of rhythm / meter possible
Transparent textures / clarity emphasised; varied textures and density for contrast
Piece as set item (although exceptions such as small ensemble jazz and Indian classical music exist)
Presentational Performance
Participatory Performance
(Thomas Turino 2008)
The capacity for music to transform people's social reality.
Musical Citizenship
Camlin, D.A. (2014). Whose Quality Is It Anyway? Journal of Arts and Communities. 6 (2+3). p.pp. 99–118.
Mather, B. & Camlin, D.A. (2016). Situational Pedagogy in Community Music. In: Community Music Activity commission. 2016, Edinburgh: ISME.
Camlin, D.A. (2016a). Libraries Gave Us Power. In: Keynote speech at Student Research Conference. [Online]. 14 November 2016, York St John University: International Centre for Community Music. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/310234121_Libraries_Gave_Us_Power.
Camlin, D.A. (2016b). Music In Three Dimensions. Doctoral Thesis. Sunderland: University of Sunderland.
Camlin, D.A. (2016c). Music In Three Dimensions. In: International Society for Music Education conference. July 2016, Glasgow: ISME.
Camlin, D.A. (2017b). Singing The Rights We Do Not Possess. In: Community Music: beitrage zur Theorie und Praxis aus internationaler und desutshcer Perspektive. Munich: Waxmann, pp. 137–148.
Camlin, D.A. (2016d). Whatever You Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not. In: Community Music Activity commission. July 2016, Edinburgh: ISME.
Camlin, D.A. (2015b). This is My Truth, Tell Me Yours: emphasising dialogue within Participatory Music. International Journal of Community Music. 8 (3). p.pp. 233–257.
Camlin, D.A. (2015a). Be More Human - Sing! Sing Up magazine.
Camlin, D.A. (2017a). Becoming a Community Musician: a situated approach to curriculum, content, and assessment. In: Oxford Handbook of Community Music. Oxford: OUP Oxford.
Camlin, D.A. (2015c). What’s Love Got To Do With It? In: June 2015, International Centre for Community Music, York St John University.
Community of Reflective Practice
Aesthetic / Presentational
Praxial / Participatory
What difference do I make in the world?
What change in society will this contribute to?
What do I hope will be the impact of this?
Why do I think that?
How will I know if / when we achieve that?
Why is
a good way of doing this?
Where are the boundaries?
What are the ethical considerations?
What's the purpose?
Is it any good? Do I know what it's good
Where's my comfort zone? And how do I operate outside of it?
Which dimension/s am I naturally inclined / oriented towards?
How do I strengthen the other/s?
I do? Why don't I do that?
What am I good at? What are my skills best suited for?
Who else do I want to work with on this? Whose perspective / skills / insight would be useful?
How is love - the aesthetic of relationship - manifest in my work?
How do I / we
shape / control the sound
to achieve something emotionally 'affective'? What aesthetic effect am I / are we aiming for?
How do I
refine my awareness
to express myself clearly and effectively, whilst listening to all the other voices?
How do we
work together
for maximum aesthetic effect?
How do I
support others
to express themselves?
techniques / skills
do I / we need to deploy / develop to achieve this?
When do I direct? When to facilitate? When to delegate? When to just 'get out of the way'?
Who's in the room? What do they want?
What do they need / expect from me?
Who isn't in the room? Why not? Where are they?
How can I make this easier / more accessible?
How do I facilitate a 'safe space'?
How do I make space for other people's creativity?
c.400 BC
'In Greek society, music was not for contemplation. Music was considered a social praxis that existed for social uses: music was praxial. Everything ‘musical’ was integrated with ceremonies, celebrations, entertainments, feasts, rituals, education, and therapy. As part of Greek musical praxis, Plato and Aristotle argued that music had a unique socialethical power.'
(Elliott and Silverman 2013)
'By the mid-eighteenth century a new concept of music began to emerge: the concept of music as ‘aesthetic’, as a ‘fine art’, or Art (Kristeller 1990). According to the aesthetic concept that matured in the early nineteenth century, the value of music lies entirely in the beauty or ‘meaning’ of its sonorous forms—in the ‘music itself’. The strongest and most persistent assumption during the past 250 years is that music is ‘aesthetic’ in its nature and value.'
(Elliott and Silverman 2013)
Mid-18th C.
'music is not simply a collection of products, or objects. Fundamentally, music is something that people do’
(Elliott 1995)
'Presentational performance refers to situations where one group of people, the artists, prepare and provide music for another group, the audience, who do not participate in making the music or dancing.' (Turino 2008)
'Participatory performance is a special type of artistic practice in which there are no artist-audience distinctions, only participants and potential participants performing different roles, and the primary goal is to involve the maximum number of people in some performance role.'
'Musical participation and experience are valuable for the processes of personal and social integration that make us whole.' (Turino 2008)
'The study [Use or Ornament] reached a number of conclusions about the social impact of participation in the arts, the most important of which being that:
• Participation in arts activities brings social benefits;
• The benefits are integral to the act of participation;
• The social impacts are complex but understandable;
• Social impacts can be assessed and planned for.
In short, it concludes that the arts have a serious contribution to addressing contemporary social challenges. Rather than the cherry on the policy cake to which they are so often compared, they should be seen as the yeast without which it fails to rise to expectations.' (Matarasso 1997)
A praxial concept of music posits that ‘music’ exists and is defined in relation to an infinite range of social needs and practices. Sounds are ‘musical’ not simply because of their sonic characteristics, but because of the functions people assign them in specific social-cultural situations. Without shared understandings of tonal-rhythmic systems and their socially-related behaviours and uses, music would not be understood as anything more than random sounds. In short, music is made by human beings for other human beings.
(Elliott and Silverman 2013)
'Musical values and meanings are not intrinsic, they are not ‘fixed-in’ sonic forms or captured in notated scores; musical values are socially assigned to sounds according to how sounds are used, experienced, and understood as being ‘good for’ various purposes in personal and social life.
In other words, there is not such thing as ‘music itself’, or ‘art for art’s sake’, or ‘pure’ or ‘absolute’ music. Music can only be understood and experienced in relation to contexts of socio-musical practice; musical meanings and experiences are never disinterested or distanced from social, cultural, historical, and personal needs and functions. From a praxial perspective, ‘music’ has meaning only in relation to, and in recognition of, distinct human aims and needs.' (Elliott and Silverman 2013)
'In contrast to the dualistic separation of mind and body that grounds the aesthetic concept of disinterested contemplation, the praxial concept reunites the dualisms implicit in the ‘fine art’ concept of music: body and mind become body-mind; thinking and feeling become thinking-feeling; likewise with knowing/doing, classical/pop, reflection/practice, musical/extramusical.
Whereas the American ‘aesthetic education’ philosophy (e.g. Reimer 1970, 1989) emphasizes the aesthetic perception of musical structures for disembodied aesthetic experience, praxial music education (Elliott 1995; Elliott and Silverman, forthcoming) emphasizes social, ethical, embodied musical ‘particip-action’ in musicing and listening for deeply felt musical experiences, experienced self-growth, happiness, health, democratic fellowship, intercultural understanding, and the construction and reconstruction of self-efficacy in broader social-cultural-political affairs.' (Elliott and Silverman 2013)
'We unconsciously and instinctively make work to fit pre-existing formats. In a sense, we work backward, either consciously or unconsciously, creating work that fits the venue available to us. That holds true for the other arts as well: pictures are created that fit and look good on white walls in galleries just as music is written that sounds good either in a dance club or a symphony hall (but probably not in both). In a sense, the space, the platform, and the software “makes” the art, the music, or whatever. After something succeeds, more venues of a similar size and shape are built to accommodate more production of the same. After a while the form of the work that predominates in these spaces is taken for granted—of course we mainly hear symphonies in symphony halls.' (Byrne 2012)
Evolution of the 'venue'
‘To music is take part, in any capacity, in a musical performance, whether by performing, by listening, by rehearsing or practicing, by providing material for performance (whay is called composing), or by dancing.’ (Small, 1998)
"The many different elements that collectively comprise the cultural ecology – whether the arts, the creative industries, or everyday creativity – are interrelated. Recognising the full diversity of cultural creativity in society – and its ecological nature – is an essential step in addressing an intractable problem of democratic legitimacy facing cultural policy and practice: that only a small proportion of the UK population makes regular use of publicly funded cultural organisations and activities."
(Towards Cultural Democracy report, 2017)
Holistic / Ubiquitous
Cultural Democracy
Love & Dialogue
Full transcript