The goal of this sub-project is to empirically research parameters in the interaction with musical instruments that are crucial both for the performer and the experience of the audience. Especially the relationship between gestures and the sensory feedback of the instrument will be investigated. This parameter called “mapping” is considered substantial for the success of an instrument. From this research, not only fundamental findings concerning the interplay of music production and reception, but also direct recommendations for the development of new instruments in the other sub-projects will result.
We will conduct qualitative Interviews with developers of musical instruments, performers, and audience members. Furthermore, we will conduct experimental research under controlled laboratory conditions. The first group of experiments will investigate the impact of mappings on the performing artist. This parameter probably has a substantial influence on the usability of a musical instrument and the user experience it elicits. Recent theories in the field of music perception even put the internal imitation of expressive musical movements in the focus of musical listening (‘embodied music cognition’). Therefore, a second group of experiments addresses the effect of gesture-sound-mappings on the evaluation of the performance by the audience. The tested hypothesis states that the movements executed during sound production substantially contribute to music experience.