Keynote paper to AEDEI 2017 Conference at Universidad de La Rioja
“The note is as mighty as words … ”
Traditional music as played today. Its revival and status are the product of a highly-motivated, politically-driven, extra-State activism which has been confident of the music’s intrinsic artistic merit, aesthetic importance and symbolic value. The music’s re-establishment is not only an achievement to be maintained, but is also an invitation to development. It is at an artistically-thrilling watershed with three directions being explored by performers: refinement (maintaining styles and standards), expansion (development in the Contemporary Classical idiom), and fusion/crossover (engaging with Popular/Rock). Like the written word, the ‘Traditional’ music idiom is simultaneously a barometer, gauge and agent of identity-related artistic expression.