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Extract from a Talk between Gilles Laval
and Jean-Charles François
Reflections on some walls of misunderstanding between musical practices
In a recent workshop that I conducted in an institution of higher education, I realized that there were problems I did not suspect at first. That is, after the students were given assignments, some misunderstanding occurred, which in my opinion is due to the fact that under the same words people do not hear the same things. And in this context, I also asked for an exercise that involved transcribing a recorded piece of music, but the listening varies according to the aesthetics of the world one comes from. We don’t use the same entries to listen and explain what we’re hearing.
This means that people who are competent in their field of analysis or writing music are completely lost in the face of music that is foreign to them.
In a way it is the opposite of what Giacomo says: (see Encounter with Giacomo Spica Capobianco in the present edition) “when you go to a neighborhood where there is nothing left, it’s a no man’s land, there are only no law zones, even the cops don’t go there. You’re going to try to install things culturally, but there’s a gap that’s widened so much, such a big divide, that makes some people wonder why we come, they don’t see the point.” And you can turn the thing around a bit by saying: in a neighborhood with a classical music institution, everything is provided, it’s not a no man’s land, it’s just an area with full rights. But it’s basically the same problem: if things are introduced that are culturally unrecognized, there’s a gulf that has grown so wide, a fracture that is so great, that some people wonder why one comes there.
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