Musical Modernity, the Beautiful and the Sublime

Conference: Musical Modernity, the Beautiful and the Sublime
 

The University of Aberdeen and the SOUND festival, Aberdeen, Scotland.
30-31st October 2015

 

Theodor Adorno noted the difficulty of creating new art that can be beautiful in a truthful way, eschewing any response to musical modernity that would allow its easy assimilation in terms of the traditionally beautiful. For Jean-François Lyotard, the arts for the last century have no longer been concerned primarily with the beautiful but rather with a renewed concept of the sublime. This dissociation of the beautiful from the modern in Adorno and Lyotard contrasts strikingly with Helmut Lachenmann’s revalorisation of the beautiful and his distinction of ‘humanity’s legitimate and profoundly rooted demand for art as the experience of Beauty, and its false satisfaction and alienation in the form of art “fodder” manufactured by the bourgeoisie and preserved in a society of repressed contradictions’ (Lachenmann 1980, 20). Out of this polarity of the modern as the moment of the sublime (Lyotard) and the possibility of a ‘rescued’ concept of the beautiful (Lachenmann), participants are invited to offer twenty minute papers on any aspect of musical modernity in relation to the beautiful and/or the sublime. The sublime has become a rich source of reflection in critical theory, with alternative conceptualisations from Lyotard, Derrida, Lacan, Zizek, Marion and others, and following Simon Morley’s categorisation, the contemporary sublime has been related to the unpresentable, transcendence, nature, technology, terror, the uncanny and altered states. While the sublime has not enjoyed attention in music studies comparable with what it has stimulated elsewhere in the humanities, this conference will provide a forum for musicological, theoretical and philosophical reflection in conjunction with a series of musical performances.
 
Proposals considering any of the following are welcomed:
 

  • Musicological papers considering any aspect of modern/contemporary music in relation to the sublime and/or the beautiful.
  • Philosophical/Critical theory papers developing thinking on the beautiful and/or the sublime in relation to any aspect of musical modernity.
  • Philosophical/Critical theory papers which do not deal explicitly with music but which develop thinking on the sublime and the beautiful in ways that may relate interestingly to musical modernity.
  • Papers considering musical modernity, politics and the sublime.
  • Papers considering the extent to which musical modernity concerns the sublime (Lyotard) or a reconstituted notion of beauty (Lachenmann).

 
Abstracts should be c. 400 words and should also contain first and last name of presenter, title of proposed presentation, institutional affiliation, mailing address, telephone number and email address.
 
Proposals must be received no later than 1 June 2015 and should be posted to e.campbell@abdn.ac.uk.
 
Proposals will be blind reviewed by two or three members of the conference committee, depending on the areas covered in the proposal. Notification of acceptance will be sent to applicants by 12th June 2015.
 
Keynote Speakers:

  • James Williams (Professor of Philosophy, University of Dundee)
  • Brice Pauset (Composer, Lecturer in Philosophy at Berlin’s Freies Universität and Professor of Composition at the Institute for New Music in the Musikhochschule Freiburg im Breisgau)

Confirmed performers:

  • Ensemble Alternance (Paris, France) featuring works by Brice Pauset, Raphaël Cendo and Ricardo Nillni.
  • Ian Pace (piano) featuring works by Helmut Lachenmann and Pascal Dusapin.

Conference Committee:
            Edward Campbell
            Fiona Robertson
            Peter Nelson
            Björn Heile
            Phillip Cooke
            Pete Stollery


Conference Programme

Conference: Musical Modernity, the Beautiful and the Sublime
The University of Aberdeen and sound festival
Aberdeen, Scotland.
30-31st October 2015

Thursday 29th October

17.00-19.00

Registration

MacRobert Building, University of Aberdeen

18.00

Reception

Room 047 MacRobert Building, University of Aberdeen

19.30

Performance:

The Locked Door by Gemma MacGregor

Butchart Recreation Building

University of Aberdeen

Friday 30th October

09.00-10.30

SESSION 1

CHAIR: Mark Hutchinson, York St. John University

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

James Davis, University of Birmingham

'The passage from the sublime to the beautiful in György Ligeti'

 

 

Varvara Gyra, Paris University VIII

‘Jani Christou: « aesthetics » or meaningful art?’

 

 

Mauro Fosco Bertola, Heidelberg University

‘The Trouble with the Bee-Keeper: Hans Werner Henze’s Aristaeus (2003) and the Žižekian Sublime’

 

10.30-11.00

BREAK

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

11.00-12.30

SESSION 2

CHAIR: Lauren Redhead, Canterbury, Christ Church University

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

John Dack, Middlesex University

Pierre Schaeffer’s ‘eccentric sounds’: A (re)evaluation

 

 

Suk-Jun Kim, University of Aberdeen

Sublime spaces in electroacoustic music practice and attempting to return to place

 

 

Geoff Palmer, University of Aberdeen

A shared beauty? Reflections on the interplay between natural and artistic beauty in the context of a contemporary string quartet.

 

12.45-13.30

PERFORMANCE:

Ensemble Alternance

Raphaël Cendo Rokh

King’s College Chapel, High Street, University of Aberdeen

13.30-14.30

LUNCH

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

14.30-16.00

SESSION 3

CHAIR: Larson Powell, University of Missouri, Kansas City

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

Lauren Redhead, Canterbury, Christ Church University

Monstrosity, Abjection and Entfremdung: Beauty in Atonal Music

 

 

Mark Hutchinson, York St. John University

Stairways in the Dark: Sound, Syntax and the Sublime in Haas’s in vain

 

 

Ashley Woodward, University of Dundee

Sublime Aesthetic of Musical Postmodernity

 

16.00-16.30

BREAK

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

16.30-17.45

KEYNOTE ADDRESS 1

Tim Ingold, Professor of Anthropology at University of Aberdeen

Six Propositions on Beauty

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

18.30-19.30

PERFORMANCE

Ian Pace, piano

Pascal Dusapin Schnell (UKP)
Pascal Dusapin Etudes

King’s College Chapel, High Street, University of Aberdeen

8pm

CONFERENCE DINNER

MUSA

33, Exchange Street, Aberdeen 

Saturday 31st October 

09.00-10.30

SESSION 1

CHAIR: Phillip A. Cooke, University of Aberdeen

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

Ewa Siemdaj, Academy of Music in Kraków

The Category of Beauty in the works of Witold Lutosławski and Andrzej Panufnik

 

 

Małgorzata Janicka-Słysz , Academy of Music in Krakow

Polish music after Karol Szymanowski. The relevance of Beauty

 

 

Krzysztof Cyran, Academy of Music, Kraków

The Beautiful and the Sublime as key values in contemporary Polish sacred music

 

10.30-11am

BREAK

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

11.00-12.30

SESSION 2

CHAIR: Isabella van Elferen, Kingston University London

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

Larson Powell, University of Missouri, Kansas City

The Time of Sublimity: Necessary and Possible Futures

 

 

Adrienne Janus, University of Aberdeen

A coincidence of contraries: Beckett, Stockhausen and the minimalist and maximalist sublime on and around the events of May, 1968.

 

 

Edward Campbell, University of Aberdeen

Charting the beautiful and the sublime in musical modernity

 

13.00-13.45

PERFORMANCE

Ian Pace, piano

Brian Ferneyhough Quirl
Helmut Lachenmann Serynade
Brice Pauset Étude

King’s College Chapel, High Street, University of Aberdeen

13.45-14.30

LUNCH

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

14.30-16.00

SESSION 3

CHAIR: Ashley Woodward, University of Dundee

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

 

Andreas Vejvar, University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna

Vladimir Jankélévitch: ‘From music to silence’

                                

 

Isabella van Elferen, Kingston University London

The Lure of Timbre

Paradoxical Realism between the Sublime and the Grain

 

 

Rebecka Sofia Ahvenniemi

Musical Composition and Fractures. Leaving Traces in Material, Technique, and Thought

 

16.00-16.30

BREAK

Room 047, MacRobert Building,

University of Aberdeen

16.30-17.45

KEYNOTE ADDRESS 2:

James Williams, Honorary Professor of Philosophy, Deakin University, Melbourne; member of the Alfred Deakin Research Institute for Citizenship and Globalization.

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

17.45-18.30

PLENARY (closing discussion)

Room 055 MacRobert Building University of Aberdeen

19.00-20.00

PERFORMANCE

Ensemble Alternance

Geoffroy Drouin Cinq méditations sur Le Bernin
Ricardo Nillni Wipe, Boom, Wipe
Brice Pauset Euridyce

King’s College Chapel, High Street, University of Aberdeen

 

DINNER/EVENING FREE

 

 The conference and the performances are funded by Diaphonique

Diaphonique, a franco-british contemporary music fund supported by the Institut Français, the SACEM, the  Bureau export de la musique, the British Council and Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication

Musical Modernity, the Beautiful and the Sublime, organised in partnership with University of Aberdeen, sound festival and Centre for Modern Thought.

 

     


Registration

Registration for the conference is now open. Please click the link below to visit the payment page.

Registration Fees - Full conference package below includes tickets to all conference performances, attendance at all the conference addresses, a conference pack, teas, coffees, lunches and the conference dinner.

  • Full conference - £110
  • Student rate for full conference - £70 students
  • Day rate - £55
  • Student day rate - £35

We would be obliged if you could send payment by 1 October 2015. Please contact us if there is a problem with this.

Cancellation charges: After 1 August, 50%; after 15 September, 75%; after 15 October, 100%.

Online Registration

Related Events

Date

Time

Performer

Works

Venue

29-Oct

7.30pm

University of Aberdeen students

Locked Door by Gemma MacGregor

Butchart Recreation Centre

30-Oct

12.45pm

Ensemble Alternance

Raphaël Cendo Rokh

King’s College Chapel

30-Oct

6.30pm

Ian Pace, piano

Pascal Dusapin Schnell (UKP)

Pascal Dusapin 1er février 2007
Pascal Dusapin Etudes

King’s College Chapel

31-Oct

12.45pm

Ian Pace, piano

Brian Ferneyhough Quirl
Helmut Lachenmann Serynade
Brice Pauset Étude

King’s College Chapel

31-Oct

7pm

Ensemble Alternance

Geoffroy Drouin Cinq méditations sur Le Bernin
Ricardo Nillni Wipe, Boom, Wipe
Brice Pauset Euridyce

King’s College Chapel


Accommodation Information

Delegates receive a special rate during the conference in the following hotels.

Copthorne hotel:
 
£50.00 – single room per night (Bed and Breakfast)
£65.00 – double / twin occupancy per night (Bed and Breakfast)
When booking, reference ‘sound festival’.
Emails can be sent to reservations.aberdeen@millenniumhotels.com or call the hotel and ask for reservations on 01224 630404.
 
Address:
122 Huntly Street
Aberdeen, AB10 1SU
United Kingdom
Phone: +44 (0) 12 2463 0404
Website: http://www.millenniumhotels.co.uk/copthorneaberdeen/

 
Aberdeen Northern Hotel
 
£79.50 – per person (Bed and Breakfast)
 
Address:
1 Great Northern Road
Aberdeen
AB24 3PS
Scotland
Phone: +44 (0)1224 483342
Website: http://www.aberdeennorthernhotel.com/


Douglas Hotel
 
£49B&B per single room,
£62B&B per double room for sole/double occupancy
To book, please contact Steph Knox via email: reservations@aberdeendouglas.com or phone 01224 630404. Make sure to mention you’re attending sound festival to get the special rate.
 
Address:
43-45 Market St
Aberdeen
AB11 5EL
United Kingdom
Phone:
Website: http://www.aberdeendouglas.com/
 
 
For information about other accommodation available in Aberdeen: http://visitaberdeen.com/accommodation/