Honourable Mention

Musical Gesture: Performance as Movement

Submitted by:Viktoriia Grynenko
Collaborators: Jen Dunford, dancer
Brad LaFoy, photographer

My research as a violinist at the University of Alberta explores the idea of ‘metaphoric intersectionality’ (Duerden, 2007) between violin and dance gestures. This is the idea that physical and music gestures in violin performance can lead to insights into the gestures of dance, and vice versa. Thus, mutually improving the final product of creative collaboration between them.

In order to embody violin and dance gestures through one image, we attached small LED lights to me, the violinist. The lights went on the tips of my fingers and along the right bowing arm from shoulder to wrist. Long exposures (varying from one to eight seconds as we experimented) traced the movement of my hands into a single image.

Then, the lights were attached to a dancer who choreographed dance movements that would respond not only to the music I played, but also to the light patterns created in the photos of my performance. Attaching lights to the dancer’s arms and legs and photographing her in the same way, the dance became a literal and metaphorical echo of the gestural movement of the music’s original performance.