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International Symposium on Performance Science 2013

International Symposium on Performance Science 2013The Institute of Music Acoustics (Wiener Klangstil) hosted the Internationale Symposium für Performance Science 2013. Organised by Aaron Williamon (Royal College of Music, London) and Werner Goebl, mdw, it took place from 28 to 31 August 2013 at the mdw downtown campus with its marvelous lecture halls, namely Josef Haydn Saal, Clara Wieck-Schumann Saal, and Fanny Hensel-Mendelssohn Saal. This year's special theme was "Performing Together".

The term "Performance Science" refers to all empirical scientific studies that involve theatre, dance, and music performance.The term has been coined by Aaron Williamon and established through the biannual symposium ISPS which gains more and more attention and participation over the years. ISPS 2013 attracted 206 experts from 29 countries, particularly from the U.K., Brazil, Japan, Austria, and Germany, a number of delegates never seen in an ISPS before.

Volunteer helpers from RCM at the registration desk (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Attentive audience in Joseph Haydn Saal of mdw (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Poster session (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Many questions after a inspiring talk (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)

The four keynote speakers elaborated this year's conference theme "Performing Together" with a wide range of topics: Emma Redding (Trinity Laban Conservatory, London, U.K.) talked about aspects of dance performance, Peter Keller (MARCS, Sydney, Australia) reported on models of ensemble performance, Alan Wing's presentation (Uni Birmingham, U.K.) covered fundamental synchronisation mechanisms in string quartet performance and W. Tecumseh Fitch (Universität Wien, Austria) explained the evolutionary function of music and ensemble synchronisation and its significance for music making.

RCM director Colin Lawson introduces the first keynote speaker Emma Redding (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Keynote speaker Emma Redding, Trinity Laban London (photo by Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Keynote speaker Peter Keller begins his presentation (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Keynote speaker Alan Wing on string quartet synchronization (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)Keynote speaker Tecumseh Fitch (photo Sylvia Liu, RCM London)

Proceedings of the ISPS 2013The full range of scientific topics is reflected in the 144 papers published in the 855-pages proceedings volume issued by the European Association of Conservatoires (AEC) in Brussels, Belgium. The individual papers are available online here.

Proceedings of the International Symposium on Performance Science 2013, edited by Aaron Williamon and Werner Goebl, published by the European Association of Conservatoires (AEC), Brussels, Belgium, ISBN 9782960137804, 855 pages.


Following the ISPS 2013, the open-access journals Frontiers in Cognitive Science and Frontiers in Human Neuroscience opened a research topic "Performance Science" and a research topic "Neuroscience of Performance" aimed to make the conference theme internationally more visible. Topic editors are Aaron Williamon, Werner Goebl, Hans-Christian Jabusch, Jennifer MacRitchie, David Wasley, and Matthew A Wyon. The special topics are open for abstract submissions until 1 October 2013; full papers are due by 31 January 2014 and will enter the usual high-quality review process of the frontiers series.

(WG, 16 Sept 2013)



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