Generative Structures in Improvisation: Computational Segmentation of Keyboard Performances

Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of New Music Research, 2014, 43 (2), pp. 224 - 236
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We assessed the hypothesis elaborated by Pressing and by the first author that improvisation is normally based on the generation of segmental contrasts in musical features. Nine experienced improvisers performed a series of free- and 3-section referent-based pieces, each of about three minutes. Each player undertook eight improvisations with `referent instructions, preceded and followed by a free improvisation. A MIDI-equipped grand piano was used, and audio and MIDI were recorded. Computational analyses of the MIDI data assessed whether performers realized the referents successfully, and then determined the large-scale segmentation of the free improvisations. The performers almost always fulfilled the referents (68/72 improvisations, p?
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