A volume in Cognition and Perception
1999, Pages 501–602
14 – The Performance of Music
Music performance is a large subject that can be approached in many different ways. This chapter focuses on empirical research of music performance and related matters. Most of this research is concerned with Western tonal music and mainly art music. Excellence in music performance involves two major components like a genuine understanding of what the music is about, its structure and meaning, and a complete mastery of the instrumental technique. Evaluation of performance included many studies which are reviewed earlier. Evaluation occurs in the everyday activity of music critics, music teachers, and musicians. An overall evaluation is considered as a weighted function of the evaluations in the specific aspects. In order to maintain the tempo and to achieve perceived synchrony, musicians should therefore play a small amount ahead of the beat they hear. With sharp attacks the delay is less, and instruments with sharp attacks may therefore serve as “beat-definers” for the rest of an ensemble. In addition, some attempts are made to predict evaluation of music performances from the physical characteristics of the performances.
Copyright © 1999 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.