The Interpretive Shaping of Music Performance Research


  • John Rink



performance, musical structure, shape, motion, gesture, phrasing


In their study of nine pianists Buck, MacRitchie and Bailey observe a universal embodiment of phrasing structure and other higher-level structural features of the music, the physical makeup of which is nevertheless particular to both the individual performers and the pieces they are performing. Such a conclusion invites renewed consideration of assumptions in the literature on musical performance about the nature and role of structure and about performers’ ‘interpretations’ thereof. The findings also raise interesting questions about the musical viability of empirical research on performance and its capacity to shed light on how performers shape the music they play, their motivations in doing so, and how those listening to them might in turn be affected by this.




How to Cite

Rink, J. (2013). The Interpretive Shaping of Music Performance Research. Empirical Musicology Review, 8(2), 120–123.