musique contemporaine

Ircam - articles scientifiques notice originale

Aural Analysis of Arabic Improvised Instrumental Music (Taqsîm)






document numérique

Cette ressource est disponible chez l'organisme suivant : Ircam - Centre Pompidou



Aural Analysis of Arabic Improvised Instrumental Music (Taqsîm)


Ayari, Mondher (auteur)
McAdams, Stephen (auteur)





Perception   analyse


This study addresses the perception of Arabic improvised music. The modal musical system (maqâm) as well as the model par excellence of instantaneous musical exposition and composition, instrumental improvisation (taqsîm), are presented. The classical Arabic maqâm (plural maqâmât) is defined in terms of other fundamental interactive elements. The role of modal perception in the mental organization of a taqsîm performed on the `ûd was explored with tasks involving the identification of musical elements, the segmentation of the musical work, and verbal descriptions and performed melodic "reductions" of the segments. Strong differences in identifications and segmentations are found between listeners of European and Arabic cultural origins. Both groups make segmentations on the basis of salient surface features such as pauses and register changes, whereas Arab listeners make segmentations that are defined by subtle modal changes that often go unnoticed by the Europeans. However, not all of the Arab listeners agree on where such changes take place or even at times on which maqâmât are being played. One major ambiguity in maqâm identification in the taqsîm studied is discussed in detail. The melodic reductions of segments in a given maqâm reveal the nature of Arabic modes as involving not just a tuning system, but also essential melodico-rhythmic configurations that are emblematic of the maqâm. A music-analytic approach to the deployment of the maqâmât within the form of the taqsîm that is informed by the perceptual results is developed. This approach involves the factors that lead to implicit recognition of maqâmât, including ambiguities in identification, and those that inform the hierarchical organization of the form on the basis of larger-scale movements among maqâmât.


Article paru dans : Music Perception vol. 21 n°2


Envoyer la notice

Bookmark and Share 

Identifiant OAI


Date de la notice

2012-02-08 01:00:00

Identifiant portail