Qualitative perspectives on gesture in saxophone performance: two case studies

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The increasing research on gesture in music performance demon- strates its influence embraces technical, expressive and communi- cative dimensions, which mastery is essential to the achievement of skilled, meaningful musical presentations. This study constitutes a preliminary exploration of gesture-making in the specific case of saxophone performance, framed on a larger on-going research cen- tered in understanding the role of gesture and the ways it can im- prove pedagogy and playing. An analysis of two video recordings of renowned contemporary saxophonists and pedagogues interpret- ing the same repertoire was conducted through a systematic obser- vation procedure previously applied to other instruments. Whilst each artist had a personal way of communicating through his gesture vocabulary, common features amongst saxophonists (and other wind instrumentalists) were extracted. Findings permitted to establish a set of gesture types related to saxophone performance, as well as expand on their functional nature and correlation with the musical content.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the international conference on digital creation in arts and communication, ARTeFACTo2020
EditorsBruno Silva
Place of PublicationFaro
PublisherUniversidade do Algarve
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9789899023338
ISBN (Print)9789899023321
Publication statusPublished - 26 Nov 2020
EventInternational Conference on Digital Creation in Arts and Communication - Faro, Portugal
Duration: 26 Nov 202027 Nov 2020


ConferenceInternational Conference on Digital Creation in Arts and Communication
Abbreviated titleARTeFACTo2020


  • Musical gesture
  • Saxophone performance
  • Body poetics
  • Motion analysis


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