From the standpoint of my home discipline of intercultural communication, I will consider the developing methodology of a world music ensemble (WME) in the music department of my university in the UK. This focus connects in several ways to an intercultural exploration of the music and dance practices of Southeastern Europe. First, as an outsider (but for 15+ years, a frequent visitor) to this broad region, my reflections flow out of what might be humorously termed ‘Allophilia Balkanica’. My main professional identity is that of an intercultural educator; only recently have I begun to professionalise my ethnomusicology interests. To paraphrase Bruno Nettl (2005: 446ff) and Henry Stobart (2008:19ff), I have now pitched my interculturalist’s tent in the shady bowers of ethnomusicology. Second, it is from this camp that I now jointly run (with clarinettist Ros Hawley) a klezmer ensemble. This represents an interesting case in terms of WME methodology in that klezmer no longer has a clear ‘homeland’. Instead, since the revival of the late 1970s in the USA, there are now many sites of practice across the globe, each with intriguing cultural anchors and leanings. However, klezmer’s roots and characteristics have some co-territorial links with other music and dance practices in Southeastern Europe. Third, our ensemble’s operating context is also intriguing in that it is not embedded in Manchester’s significant local Jewish/Yiddish cultural reservoirs, and we, as ensemble leaders, represent what might be seen as ‘visiting’ culture-bearers. Overall, these particularities of klezmer’s music cultures, the ensemble context, and the cultural identities of its leaders make for methodological richness and challenges vis-à-vis issues of authenticity, tradition, transmission, and intermusicality as these music students trained in Western classical/art music experience (through ensemble performance) the largely unfamiliar music culture of klezmer and its part-Balkan roots.
|Title of host publication||host publication|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2012|
|Event||Third Symposium of the ICTM Study Group for Music and Dance in Southeastern Europe - Berovo, Macedonia|
Duration: 17 Apr 2012 → 22 Apr 2012
|Conference||Third Symposium of the ICTM Study Group for Music and Dance in Southeastern Europe|
|Period||17/04/12 → 22/04/12|
- world muisc ensemble methodology, klezmer, appropriate methodology, Balkans