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IAS Fellows’ Lecture – Seeing Sounds and Feeling Rhythms: music as a multi-sensory experience

March 2 @ 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm

Public Lecture by Dr Michael Schutz (McMaster University)


Why do we buy concert tickets when the same sounds can be heard more cheaply and comfortably within our own homes? Why do popular music concerts include elaborate lighting and staging effects for what is ostensibly an auditory event? Why can’t orchestral musicians wear t-shirts and flip-flops? Clearly, both watching musicians play and “moving to the beat” while listening to are common behaviours— but why do these actions play such a crucial role in music “listening”?  Professor Schutz will explore this issue through the context of two projects exploring the multi-sensory nature of the musical experience.  The first is a novel musical illusion in which musicians use visible gestures to change the way music “sounds.”   Some expert performers capitalize on the fact that although these gestures have no acoustic consequences, they are crucial in shaping the way in which audiences perceive performances.   The second is a new line of research exploring out “moving to the beat” can actually help audience’s listen more accurately.  Together, these projects raise interesting philosophical questions about what music “is” and how it is best experienced.  For a preview this research, please visit the MAPLE Lab media coverage page at http://maplelab.net/media/media-archive.

This lecture is free and open to all. Registration is not required to attend in person.


March 2
5:30 pm - 6:30 pm
Event Category:


Lindisfarne Centre, St Aidan’s College
Windmill Hill
Durham, DH1 3LJ United Kingdom
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+44 (0)191 334 5769
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