3- Lip-syncing as an emergent method of musical analysis – Anthony Lomax, Queen’s University

4:00 PM, Saturday 25 May 2019 (2 hours)
Guided tour "Montréal in jazz"   06:00 PM to 08:00 PM (2 hours)
While music analysts place more importance on embodied musical practice today than ever before, their analyses are mostly presented in text-based formats. The data they gather is similarly textual. Further, most of these methods—whether empirical, ethnographic, or otherwise—require analysts to have extensive music training, and the results are often only accessible to other musicologists or academics. In this paper, I will present lip-syncing as an embodied method of analyzing recorded music. I will show how people with little or no musical training can analyze music through lip-syncing, and how the method is entertaining as well as informative. Further, I will show how lip-synced performances result in insightful recontextualizations that demonstrate any number of potential performativities within a recording. I will use my recently completed master’s thesis, which involved me directing four lip-syncing performers in a cabaret-style performance of John Weinzweig’s Private Collection (1975) as recorded by Mary Lou Fallis and Monica Gaylord, as an example of this method. Through video clips of this performance, I will examine Weinzweig’s idiosyncratic appropriation of jazz; the power relations between the male composer and female performers; and the tensions between the songs, poems, and other sources Weinzweig was inspired by and the composition he produced. I will also include quotes from audience surveys and performer interviews that I conducted after the show to enrich this conversation. Through this paper, I hope to inspire conversation about the importance of embodied methods of music analysis and the potential for innovative interdisciplinarity within them.
Queen's University
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