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date: 20 January 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The authors reflect on their own experience of developing a specific form of multimedia live performance: the visual concert. The various video projects they realized for works by Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho serve as examples illustrating a more general aesthetic question: what can video art bring to music within the concert ritual? Answers are suggested first in a general assessment of the scientific (perception and cognition research) and cultural roots and parameters of cross-media art forms, and second in an analysis of the contemporary technological tools that allow the visual concert to move beyond the antiquated paradigms of synesthesia, synchronization, or aleatory autonomy of juxtaposed media, and thus to meet the challenges of contemporary music. These mostly unexplored links between new musical techniques and video art open new opportunities that expand the listener’s experience of music and suggest a practice that can become an art form of its own.

Keywords: multimedia live performance, video art, Kaija Saariaho, synchronization, synesthesia, video art, visual concert, cross-media, contemporary music, technological

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