On the international stage, we are seeing an increasing presence and growing phenomenon of musical-gestural pieces. Musical-gestural pieces feature prominent physical elements for visual aesthetics, explicitly detailed by the composer. Notated as musical scores, usually performed by highly trained musicians, the role of the musical-gestural performer is one that spans multiple disciplines, between music and movement, and requires a multifaceted and highly skilled interpreter with specific capabilities. The rise of this genre, and increasing demand for these performers, necessitates investigation from their point of view, providing insight for future artists and academics in this field.
Winnie Huang’s interdisciplinary doctoral research investigates the collaborative process in composition and performance of musical-gestural pieces. As a musical-gestural performer, Winnie Huang will develop a performance practice allowing understanding of the skills required, with a focus on notational and practice problematics, and the physical embodiment of the pieces during the process. Winnie Huang will complete research in the genre of musical-gestural pieces through: artistic collaborations with composers in this field (K. Stockhausen, J. Walshe, S. Takasugi, J. Marino); analysis and examination of the process; and through public performances. Necessary understanding of this phenomenon will create informed composers and performers, allowing the artistic community the unique opportunity to better comprehend this genre, and generating broader interest in new musical-gestural works.