The ontology of the work: exploring the creative discourse

Redgate, Roger. 2019. The ontology of the work: exploring the creative discourse. Contemporary Musicology, 2019-2(2), pp. 43-59. ISSN 2597-9731 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

How do we understand the ontology of a work from its initial inception in the mind of a composer, to the final realisation in performance? This creative discourse is often more complex than at first appears. What is the nature of the unformed material; is this a specific apprehension of sound, an image or an extra musical reference? To what degree is this material then mediated by its own possibility in notation or even determined by various structural processes? Further, what are the relationships obtaining between notation and interpretation seen as potential form building elements; are there structures inherent in notation, which elicit material beyond a simple representation and if so, how might a composer exploit this as part of the work structure?

This paper examines the nature of the creative discourse in relation to my own compositional practice, which focuses on the symbiotic relationship between complex pre-compositional processes, notational potential and a more intuitive scanning of the material.

Item Type:



Adorno, audiation, creative discourse, compositional processes, complex systems, intuition, notation, material, musique informelle, structure, Webern,

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Music > Contemporary Music Research Unit


8 August 2019Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

21 Oct 2019 13:52

Last Modified:

09 Mar 2021 14:06

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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