Bodyphonics – How Complex Research Questions Led to an Experimental Research Design Including Artistic Research and Experiments

ONLINE EVENT: June 4th 2023
8 PM GMT, Zoom
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Prof. Dr. Corinna Eikmeier

This online research event is the first event of our new research event series “What do we know about how to research the Feldenkrais Method? – A Multi-Perspective Discussion of Methodology.

The following observations were a motivation for my research project and have led me to my research: Representatives of somatic learning methods specialize in work with musicians. Teaching Feldenkrais at the conservatory I realized that many musicians with a classical formation are not able to apply the experiences made in Feldenkrais courses to their instrumental play. During Feldenkrais courses the “quality of improvised movement” is explored and apparently the patterns of movement trained in a linear way cannot simply be changed. The descriptions of the body sensation during improvisation are similar to the sensations many people have after Feldenkrais courses. I found out that the same persons remember their moving sensations during interpretation mainly negatively. I conclude from that: not alone are the technical playing movements a cause for this, but it is the inner attitude while playing music, the perception, listening and the willingness to completely embrace the present situation.

This led me to the following research questions:
• Which specific modes of action are significant for improvisation?
• What mutual effect is there between the specific improvisational modes of action
and the quality of movement while playing music?
• Which improvisational modes of action are being dealt with implicitly in the Feldenkrais Method?
• Which possibilities of comparison can be detected between the learning strategies used in the Feldenkrais Method and improvisational modes of action?

During the research process I created a qualitative research design inspired by the qualitative heuristic and artistic research. In the presentation I will show my research design and develop questions on how to apply it to other research questions about the Feldenkrais Method.

Prof. Dr. Corinna Eikmeier studied Violoncello, Contemporary Music and Improvisation. From 2007-2009 she was a Dorothea Erxleben scholar, working on a project about Feldenkrais and improvisation. She continued this as her PHD project at Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien. Title of her dissertation: “Bewegungsqualität und Musizierpraxis. Zum Verhältnis von Feldenkrais-Methode und musikalischer Improvisation” (Movement quality and music practice. About the relationship between the Feldenkrais Method and musical improvisation). Since 2020 she is professor for instrumental- and voice pedagogy at Musikhochschule Lübeck.


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