Minimalism Unbounded! The Fifth International Conference on Minimalist Music. September 24-27, 2015

Organised by the University of Turku and the Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts, Helsinki

In this conference we will encourage new debates about the sounds and cultural meanings of minimalist music.

Usually associated with the North American style propagated since the 1960s by composers like Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Terry Riley and La Monte Young, the influence of minimalism on musical life and cross-arts practices extends beyond these now canonical figures and arguably also predates them. This conference will continue to direct focused attention towards the core repertory, but will also encourage work which challenges our assumptions about the boundaries of the style and its significance.

Minimalism Unbounded! will focus above all on the relevance of the minimalist style in the 21st century. The influence of minimalism is especially evident in music performed in multimodal and cross-artistic settings, including film, musical theatre, sound, installation and performance art. It has disseminated and transformed beyond its reductive origins in the musical avant-garde and is today heard in diverse settings, some of them recognisably postminimalist, informed by environmental concerns, inspired by spiritual or mystical ideas, and permeating popular styles and forms including film scores, ambient and drone music, glitch and IDM.

We cordially invite submissions on a broad range of topics representing different disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches. We welcome musicologists and composers, cultural theorists and philosophers, inter-arts researchers and music theorists with a view to stimulating lively debate about the past and current state of the art in minimalist music and cognate artistic practices.

We especially welcome work which

  • extends our understanding of minimalism as a sonic, social and cultural practice in the 21st century
  • offers new perspectives on the core minimalist repertory
  • opens new pathways to understanding minimalism as a musical and cross-arts phenomenon, especially how the style has migrated between genres, media and forms
  • offers new perspectives on the different traditions and influences on the style, including precursors of minimalism
  • sheds new light on minimalism in the Nordic region
  • discusses examples of postminimalism which have taken the style in new directions, including drone music and music that draws on alternative tuning systems
  • addresses the rich terrain of intersections of minimalism with popular music and culture, ranging from pop art to IDM.

Keynote speakers (details to be posted later)
Robert Fink
Jelena Novak

Guest composer (details to be posted later)
Kyle Gann

Programme committee
John Richardson (Chair)
Susanna Välimäki (Vice-Chair, University of Turku)
Juhani Nuorvala (Vice-Chair, Sibelius Academy)
Petri Kuljuntausta
John Pymm
Pwyll ap Sion

Registration
The conference fee includes participation in the conference, lunch and other refreshments, the conference programme, a book of abstracts and other relevant material, transportation between Turku and Helsinki, and admission to concerts.

Conference participation fee:
members of the Society for Minimalist Music: 120€
delegates who are not members of the Society for Minimalist Music: 150€
University of Turku and Sibelius Academy students (not including food and refreshments): 20€
conference dinner (not included in the registration fee): 40€

Proposals for individual papers, sessions and workshops should be submitted using the online forms at these links: 

Paper

Panel presentations

Poster

Workshop

All proposed papers, panels and workshops will be subject to peer review. Proposals for individual presentations should not exceed 20 minutes in length with an additional 10 minutes allocated for questions and discussion. Panel proposals should be for a maximum of 90 minutes, workshops a maximum of 120 minutes. Proposals will be accepted only via the online portal.

Deadline for proposals: March 30th 2015 (call opens on January 20th , 2015).

Applicants will be notified of the programme committee’s final decisions by May 15th, 2015

Minimalism Unbounded! will be a dynamic academic and cultural event staged in two cities, Turku and Helsinki. It will include performances of recent and older music, workshops for composers, public talks and debates, and high-level academic presentations and discussions.

The first two days of the conference will take place at the University of Turku, situated in the beautiful city of Turku on the country’s south west coast, a major cultural centre and the former capital of Finland; the final two days will take place at the Sibelius Academy, in Helsinki’s state of the art Music Centre. Travel between the two locations is included in the conference fee (the journey takes approx. 2 hrs). The organisers will post information about travel and accommodation in good time prior to notifications of accepted papers and sessions.

The conference is organised jointly by the Department of Musicology at the University of Turku and the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. It is supported by the Society for Minimalist Music (http://minimalismsociety.org ) and the International Institute for Popular Culture at the University of Turku (https://iipcblog.wordpress.com)

Contact email: minimalism(at)utu.fi​​​​​​​

Call for Papers – Fourth International Conference

Fourth International Conference on Music and Minimalism, Long Beach, CA, 3-6 October 2013

You are kindly invited to submit proposals for the Fourth International Conference on Music and Minimalism, jointly hosted by UCLA and the California State University, Long Beach on the campus of CSULB in Long Beach, CA, 3-6 October 2013.

All scholars interested in music and minimalism are invited to submit paper proposals. The conference welcomes all papers concerning minimalist and post-minimalist music as well as the many subsequent styles they inspired, and is committed to the broadest methodological scope, including analytical, historical, cultural, philosophical, composer-centric, and performance-oriented presentations. In honor of the conference’s West Coast location, the organizers would especially like to encourage papers (or session proposals) on the theme of “Minimalism and the Left (Coast),” including such topics as:

  • California minimalism (composers, labels, scenes, trends, institutions like the SF Tape Music Center, Cold Blue Recordings, etc.)
  • Minimalism and the Pacific Rim (Japan, China, East Asia)
  • Minimalism and Hollywood
  • Countercultural minimalism (minimalism, popular music, altered consciousness)
  • Minimalism and leftist (or rightist) politics (the 1960s and after)

The Society is also interested, as always, in new research on the core minimalist, post-minimalist, and “totalist” repertories; engagement with the work of lesser-known composers, especially from outside the USA, the United Kingdom, and Europe; and position papers on the larger implications of musical minimalism in contemporary world culture:

  • The minimalist and post-minimalist “core” repertoire (Young, Reich, Riley, Glass, Adams, etc.)
  • Minimalism outside the USA (Louis Andriessen, Simeon ten Holt, Gavin Bryars, Hans Otte, Eliane Radigue, Karel Goeyvaerts, Zoltan Jeney, Steve Martland, Kevin Volans, Jo Kondo, etc.)
  • Global minimalism and world music (minimalism in East and South Asia, Australasia, Africa, and Latin America; the influence of these and other non-Western musics on minimalist composers in the West)
  • Crucial but less public figures in the minimalist story: William Duckworth, Tony Conrad, Phil Niblock, Jon Gibson, Rhys Chatham, David Borden, Glenn Branca, Julius Eastman, Terry Jennings, John Luther Adams, Gavin Bryars, Rick Cox, Michael Jon Fink, Jim Fox, Peter Garland, Daniel Lentz, Ingram Marshall, Read Miller, Larry Polansky, David Rosenboom, Phillip Schroeder, Chas Smith, etc., etc.
  • Minimalism, opera, new music theater (Robert Wilson, George Coates, Mikel Rouse, Paul Dresher, Rinde Eckert, etc.) and dance (Anna Halprin, Lucinda Childs, Meredith Monk, etc.)
  • The significance of minimalist and post-minimalist music as cultural practice
  • Minimalism, space, ecology, the environment (ambient music, John Luther Adams, deep listening, etc.)
  • Minimalism, sexuality, and gender (female composers [Monk, Oliveros, Speech, Lockwood, Radigue, Ustvolskaya]; repetition, cyclic process, and gender; etc.)
  • Aesthetics/listening/analysis: discussions of the particular ways in which minimalism invites listening attitudes and their impact on music analysis
  • Minimalism, post-minimalism and their influence on contemporary music composition (see lecture recitals, below)
  • The performance practice of minimalism and post-minimalism (see lecture recitals below)

Contributions are welcomed in the form of individual papers (20 minutes) and themed sessions of 3-4 papers, as well as non-traditional sessions or events, such as listening environments or poster sessions.

For individual papers, abstracts containing a maximum of 400 words should be sent as email attachments, by February 1, 2013, to LongBeach2013@minimalismsociety.org. For themed sessions, please collate abstracts for the constituent papers and a short abstract of the session theme into a single document and submit as above. The conference is also happy to present lecture-recitals, including the possibility for composers and/or performers to present their own minimalism-related work. Those considering a proposal for a lecture-recital (or any other type of non-traditional session) are strongly encouraged to contact Robert Fink (rfink@ucla.edu) and Carolyn Bremer (carolyn.bremer@csulb.edu) as soon as possible in order to discuss their plans informally, prior to submitting a formal proposal.

More information will be posted here as details become available.

 

Farewell from Leuven

This was Leuven 2011. Thanks to all the delegates for contributing to four days filled with intense discussions, great papers and lots of fun. Hoping to see all of you (and many more) again in 2013 at the next conference, to be held ‘somewhere’ in the USA.

Updated Program

Due to some late cancellations, we had to make a few changes to the conference program. The newest (and  – so we hope – definitive) program can be found here. [UPDATE: This is the newest version, with session chairs added.]

All the paper sessions take place at the conference venue: Huis Bethlehem, Schapenstraat 34, 3000 Leuven. Except for the following activities which take place in other locations (all venues are within walking distance from each other):

Optional concert Wednesday 12 Oct. and Conference welcome reception: Schouwburg Leuven, Bondgenotenlaan 21, 3000 Leuven
Lecture-recitals, Thursday 13 Oct.: STUK (Ensemblezaal), Naamsestraat 96, 3000 Leuven
Conference dinner, Thursday 13 Oct.: De Adellijke Belofte, Naamsestraat 60, 3000 Leuven
Conference concert, Friday 14 Oct.: STUK (Soetezaal), Naamsestraat 96, 3000 Leuven
Closing session/concert 15 Oct.: MATRIX, Minderbroedersstraat 48, 3000 Leuven

A map of Leuven with these venues indicated, can be found here.

Registration has opened

Registration for the 3rd International Conference on Music and Minimalism is now possible. On the 2011 Conference page, the registration form is available, together with a link that will direct you to the secure online payment facilities of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.

A preliminary program has been posted as well, though this might still be subject to (slight) changes.

We hope to welcome you in Leuven in October!

Travel Information Available

We’ve posted some information on traveling to Leuven and finding accommodation. As the conference is non-residential, delegates are kindly asked to take care of booking their own accommodation. Please refer to the ‘Conference 2011’ page on this site for more details.

The conference will begin on Wednesday 12 October 2011 around noon and will end on Saturday 15 October in the early evening. More details about the program will be posted here as soon as possible, together with information about registration.