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The curating composer: mediating the production, exhibition and dissemination of non-classical music

Dutta, W. (2018). The curating composer: mediating the production, exhibition and dissemination of non-classical music. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance/City, University of London)


This study presents the curating composer as a new role in twenty-first century music making. It transfers and constructively applies curatorial language, methodology and strategies from the discipline of visual arts into the musical domain. The methodology is creative practice and a written commentary. There are two research outcomes: ‘Blank Canvas 17’ is a single-author exhibition platform for new music; and ‘bloom’ is a new body of non-classical music presented as a composite public outcome in six manifestations. In each of the outcomes I construct the role of the curator in music and demonstrate an inter-relationship between the mode of production and an expanded mode of exhibition. I also provide the first outline of nonclassical music that has developed within the independent classical scene (indieclassical) in London since 2003. The research context extends to contemporary visual culture and the supervisible roles of the curator and artist-curator or curartist as independent exhibition makers. I also examine a selection of historical activity to reveal proto-curating practices associated with the public presentation of new music. These include Andy Warhol’s ‘Exploding Plastic Inevitable’; early minimalism associated with La Monte Young, Terry Riley, Steve Reich and Philip Glass; and experimentalism and pirate radio in the UK.

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: M Music and Books on Music > M Music
Departments: Doctoral Theses
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