The Oxford Seminar in Music Theory and Analysis: Robert Laidlow (Jesus College, Oxford)

Dr Robert Laidlow

Free to attend, no registration required. Please click here to join the Zoom meeting.

Sound-timbre-silence provides an apt jumping off point for talking both about my approach to composition and a broader analytical approach to puzzling out contemporary music. Increasingly, I have deployed these three musical elements not in isolation to one another, but as aspects of a larger, multi-dimensional musical shape. This talk will dive into this approach, building on analysis of new music from the UK and abroad to situate this practice within wider trends in contemporary composition, including algorithmic music, spectralism, (meta)modernism and structuralism . Musical discussion will focus on the recent pieces Gravity, for string quartet, Silicon, for orchestra and electronics, and  Warp for piano and orchestra.

Oxford Seminar in Music Theory and Analysis 

Season 6 (2023–24) 

The theme for the sixth season of seminars is: Sound—Timbre—Silence. 

The Oxford Seminar in Music Theory & Analysis (OSiMTA) meets twice a term on selected Tuesdays at 17.15 UK time. Its convenors are Dr Esther Cavett and Professor Jonathan Cross. 

Our conception of theory and analysis is critical, plural and interdisciplinary. In shaping the seminars, we aim to reflect the broad range of activity taking place under the heading of theory and analysis today, as well as to challenge boundaries, embracing not only ‘conventional’ practices, histories of theory and repertoires, but also new interdisciplinary approaches that engage with cultural studies, ethnomusicology, aesthetics and philosophy, psychology, politics, performance studies, popular music studies, and so on. Speakers include distinguished local, national and international scholars. 

Seminars are open to all, including the general public. Sessions will last 90 minutes and lively discussion is encouraged. They will also be livestreamed via Zoom. 

Regular updates, abstracts and Zoom links will appear on the OSiMTA pages. You can also follow OSiMTA on Twitter/X.