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Sound Scripts

Sound Scripts

Article Title

How Play and Improvisation Facilitate Immersion and Immediacy in Music and Space

Abstract

Improvisation occurs in the present moment, reflecting on events, material and flow in the immediate past, and anticipating, sensing, and imagining material flowing into the near future. Improvising within any space creates or produces its own sense of performance and interactivity with the space. A state of immersion may be gained upon entering into and within an environment, where senses are stimulated and the mind/body engaged. Real-time interactive environments encourage being in the present moment and as aware as possible. With this awareness and interactivity with its attendant feedback, a state of embodiment can arise. This may entail not only an inner awareness of the mind and body, but also the extended awareness of and activity, perhaps playing a musical instrument, and interacting with the environment. A sense of play is valuable for improvisation, keeping things light, the choice-making easy. Play and game-play stimulate improvisation, given a reasonable range of choices and an encouraging environment. Starting from a state of rest, the choices are wide but the stimulus or demand to make selections and proceed is less. Once playing, the choices may seem restricted by the momentum gained but, equally, participants may feel stimulated and motivated to proceed. Music-making with a Grid Music System (GMS) has its constraints, but having commenced, the activity is rich and multi parameter. Using the experience of music-making with the HarmonyGrid, this paper demonstrates. how improvisation and play in-the-moment facilitate immersion in music and space.

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