Choose Your Own Adventure: Vocal Jazz Improvisation, Conceptual Metaphor, and Cognitive Embodiment

Forbes, Melissa ORCID: and Cantrell, Kate ORCID: (2021) Choose Your Own Adventure: Vocal Jazz Improvisation, Conceptual Metaphor, and Cognitive Embodiment. Musicae Scientiae. pp. 1-16. ISSN 1029-8649

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Creativity in the form of musical improvisation has received growing attention from researchers informed by the literature on embodiment. To date, this research has focused on the embodied experiences of improvising instrumentalists rather than those of improvising singers. This article investigates the experience of embodiment during improvisation through a systematic analysis of the metaphorical language used by an artist-level jazz singer in her reflections on practice. Extensive interview data with the participant were analysed to identify and reconstruct metaphorical expressions into conceptual metaphors. In this process, the metaphor of IMPROVISATION IS AN ADVENTURE was identified as the overarching conceptual structure that the participant used to make sense of her experiences of improvisation. This metaphor and its mappings illuminate the cognitively embodied dimension of vocal jazz improvisation. These findings will be of interest to jazz singers and vocal jazz educators who are encouraged to explore more fully the role of the body-mind’s interactions with its environment in order to establish expertise in improvisational ways of knowing. This research illuminates the multi-dimensional nature of an expert singer’s experiences of improvisation and is presented as a provocation for future research to include singers as participants when investigating musical improvisation and cognitive embodiment.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published online: 15 December 2021. Accepted version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions - Centre for Heritage and Culture (1 Aug 2018 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Creative Arts (1 Mar 2019 -)
Date Deposited: 06 Jan 2022 01:39
Last Modified: 11 May 2022 03:43
Uncontrolled Keywords: jazz singing, artist-level performers, performers’ experiences, embodied cognition
Fields of Research (2008): 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2004 Linguistics > 200499 Linguistics not elsewhere classified
19 Studies in Creative Arts and Writing > 1904 Performing Arts and Creative Writing > 190407 Music Performance
Fields of Research (2020): 36 CREATIVE ARTS AND WRITING > 3603 Music > 360304 Music performance
47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4704 Linguistics > 470499 Linguistics not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970119 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of the Creative Arts and Writing
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 28 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 2801 Expanding knowledge > 280122 Expanding knowledge in creative arts and writing studies
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