Intensiivseminar “Sculpting the Sound”

Sculpting the Sound:
Two-day intensive graduate seminar on contemporary music and visuality

Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre (Tatari 13, Tallinn)

May 23-24, 2015

1 or 2 ECTS credits

Hosting institutions: Estonian Graduate School of Culture Studies and Arts (GSCSA), Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre (EAMT)

Programme directors: Pro-Tempore Head of Comp. Dep. Paolo Girol (EAMT), Prof. Kristel Pappel (EAMT)

Student coordinator: Aleksandra Dolgopolova

The graduate seminar “Sculpting the Sound” will explore the boundaries between contemporary music and visuality. The invited speakers will focus on a series of significant topics. In the first day, the experience of two historically important composers’ collectives, “Música Viva” and “Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza”, will be examined. The collectives have been investigating such issues as the connections between composition techniques, political choices and the need of a common-action intended to spread the culture of contemporary music among the “consumers” of music. The first day will continue focusing on the potential of visual structures and principles (as compositional tools) in enriching the auditory’s perception of music. The focus of the day will be enlarged by the key note presentation of internationally renewed composer Ivan Fedele. The finale of the first day of the seminar will be in the form of a round table moderated by musicologist Kerri Kotta.

The second day round table discussion is moderated by visual artist Raul Keller, and focuses on diverse visual topics, for instance: the functions of music in the context of moving image, the choreographic nature of instrumental performance as a significant compositional resource, a deep reflection about utopian concepts and impulses and how they affect the creative processes, a viewpoint into the cognitive science related to art comprehension and artistic originality defined as a cognitive way in approaching pictorial orchestration of images and sounds. In the evening of the second day, the Composition Department of Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre will present a concert with music of Ivan Fedele performed by Ensemble U: (Mustpeade Maja, Pikk 26).

Invited speakers: Michelle Agnès Magalhães (BR/FR), Tarmo Johannes (EE), Ivan Fedele (IT), Fausto Sebastiani (IT), Kaire Maimets-Volt (EE), Elo Masing (EE/GB), Dirk Hoyer (DE/FI), Jarmo Valkola (FI). Moderators: Kerri Kotta (EE) and Raul Keller (EE).

Requirements for participation

Working language of the seminar is English, participation in the course is free of charge.

Interested graduate students can apply for the seminar by e-mail by May 20, 2015.

Students who are not members of GSCSA are required to add a short CV to specify their education and research interests. E-mail address:

Maximum number of participants is 40. Students are notified of their participation by May 22, 2015.

The Graduate School of Culture Studies and Arts can cover accommodation costs of a limited number of international PhD students (accepted participants), but they are responsible for their own transportation to and from Estonia.

Schedule and Abstracts

Obligatory reading material is accessible here. It is password-protected, the password will be provided to the accepted participants.

On the last page of the obligatory reading material there is a list of password-protected suggested material. The password for downloading the suggested material can be requested by

In order to obtain 1 ECTS credit points the student has to:

1. fully attend one day out of two (attending the concert is highly recommended);

2. prepare an essay (4500/5000 characters).

In order to obtain 2 ECTS credit points the student has to:

1. fully attend the two-day seminar (attending the concert is highly recommended);

2. prepare an essay (9000/10000 characters).

Free-ticket to the concert will be offered to the registered participants (GSCSA members) by the organizers.

Topic of the Essay

Taking into consideration the student background and field of research, he/she proposes, after the seminar (deadline 29th of May), the topic of his/her essay that has to address some of the seminar contents (see obligatory reading).

Important dates

May, 20: deadline for applying to seminar participation

May, 22: notification of acceptance of the participation

May, 29: deadline for proposing the chosen topic of the essay

June, 12: deadline for submitting the essay.

Additional info

For registration and information:

FB event:

The event is organised by the Graduate School of Culture Studies and Arts in collaboration with the Department of Composition of Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre and financed by the European Union through the European Social Fund.