Network Coordinator,


Editor and Webmaster for

Cynthia M. Grund


Please note that this is the way the website for 



Nordic Network for the Integration of Music Informatics, Performance and Aesthetics


appeared as of June 30, 2014, the concluding date for the period during which the network was funded by NordForsk 2010-2014. Founded in 2007, NNIMIPA was initially funded by NordPlus. This website was started in February 2010 while NNIMIPA was still a NordPlus network, and it contains extensive documentation of the activities within NNIMIPA from its inception in 2007 until the final date for the NordForsk grant in June 2014.

     The contacts that were established among researchers in the Nordic area and beyond through NNIMIPA have resulted in myriad cooperative research efforts. A significant number of these activities continue to be documented on the website which you  are most welcome to visit.


(For Google Calendar, please see HERE.)



News Archive



Nordic Network for the Integration of Music Informatics, Performance and Aesthetics



A pdf version of the program for NNIMIPA events available for download here. 

A pdf version of the poster for the day with NNIMIPA sessions available for downloadhere.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Arrival in London and at, our lodgings at University of London's Canterbury Hall, one of their three 'Garden Halls'.



Thursday, July 18, 2013

NNIMIPA Sessions as part of the

Pre-RMA-MPSG Conference Activities.

 King's College London, Strand, London WC2R 2LS


All are welcome!


10:30-13:30 NNIMIPA Session I (K2.31)




Welcoming Remarks


Cynthia M. Grund Associate Professor; Institute for the Study of Culture, University of Southern Denmark (SDU); Chief Coordinator for NNIMIPA and NNIMIPA-coordinator for SDU; NordForsk Project Manager




The Past, Current and Future State of the Art


Barry Eaglestone Senior Lecturer, University of Sheffield, UK (Retired)

Affiliated with NNIMIPA since medio 2010 via The University of Southern Denmark 


I offer a retrospective on the research I have done into music, information technology and creativity over the last few decades, the multi- and inter disciplinary nature of the area, the methods used and their limitations, the contributions my work has produced and, perhaps more importantly, the lack of contribution and the intractability of the research questions.




Pedagogies of Making Music with New Media


Alex Ruthmann

Associate Professor of Music Education and Music Technology, New York University (Steinhardt)
New York, New York, United States

Affiliated with NNIMIPA since primo 2009, and since primo 2012 via Grieg Academy, Bergen University College, Norway


This presentation will share pedagogical ideas grounded in new media practices with custom musical construction kits for use with MIT's Scratch visual programming environment and the EchoNest Remix API. Developments in MIR and interactive music technologies are creating new opportunities for education in musical performance, making and invention. Given that children increasingly have access to portable and online musical tools for music production, engineering and design, how should school- and community-based music educators respond to these innovations? The integration of these tools and practices into formal classroom environments raise pedagogical, philosophical and musical/aesthetic issues that challenge traditional notions of music education and performer-audience dynamics. For example: To what extent should the processes of musical analysis be scaffolded by technology? To what extent should musical and recording fidelity be maintained in new media experiences? What might be gained from new musical pedagogies inspired by making, invention and engineering design? 




Philosophy of History and a Rethinking of Musicological Methods


David G. Hebert
Professor, Grieg Academy, Bergen University College, Norway

NNIMIPA Coordinator, GA-BUC


This paper will synthesize essential points from a book scheduled for publication in late 2013 that describes implications of recent debates in the philosophy of history for scholarship in the interdisciplinary field of historical ethnomusicology. Responding primarily to positions outlined by such notable historians as Peter Burke, Bruce Mazlish and Ged Martin, anthropologist Jack Goody, and philosopher Aviezar Tucker, I will argue that due to the rise of digitization and shifting perceptions of intellectual property and cultural rights, musicologists must reassess how the global musical past is most capably understood and communicated to a new generation of “digital natives”. As music production and consumption have moved online to digital distribution platforms, the quality and range of instantly accessible musical sounds, experiences and knowledge have rapidly altered worldwide, with profound implications for contemporary musicianship as well as research and pedagogy. Due to the explosion of file sharing and such phenomena as audio post-production, “mashups”, and virtual performance, previously unimaginable practices have rapidly proliferated in advance of substantive deliberation among music philosophers. Examples abound of developments that promise to dramatically reshape notions of public domain and scholarly access to both musical and social data, from the sphere of legislation (e.g. Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the recent SOPA/PIPA controversy, etc.) to expansion of the commercial “data mining” industry (as revealed by Mozilla Collusion software, and associated with such applications as Music Genome Project and Amazon Music), and various corporate partnerships between monopolizing technologies and government intelligence agencies (e.g. Google and NSA). I will demonstrate how in addition to enabling a robust reconsideration of practices associated with collection, storage, analysis (and leaking) of digital files, philosophy of history enables insights into how musicologists may more effectively respond to such challenges as the role of cognitive dissonance in cultural memory, narrative schema in music historiography, and teleological distortions to the periodization and sociocultural foregrounding of aesthetic arguments and musical practices.




The Internet Age and Popular Culture as Reflected in the Mindset of Today's Guitar Students


Mika Sihvonen

Senior Researcher, University of Tampere, TRIM Research Center, Tampere, Finland.

NNIMIPA Coordinator, UTA


In this presentation I will discuss the recent technology-related factors that popular culture has brought into the musical experience. The presentation is based on my observations as a guitar teacher during the last 14 years. Different technologies and trends, alongside with the development of the World Wide Web have changed the musical experience, music learning and comprehension of music cultures. When I started to work as a guitar teacher in music school, most of my guitar students hardly recognised any music apart from their own culture. Now, the media hits such as Guitar Hero and Singstar, have increased awareness of different music styles. Also, the computer software and tablet PC applications make it possible to produce music with high quality sound and publish it online for free.


Some argue that video-gaming experience, for instance, will foster a rather mechanistic mindset in students. Computer-based systems give instant feedback if the singing or "playing" are performed in the right way or wrong way.  Perfect timing and perfect pitch are not the whole story, however. Successful TV-competition concepts such as Idols or Talents are offering mega-class popularity for a few lucky ones. On some occasions the music student may lose his or her interest for the hard work that learning music usually requires.


Of course, there are pros and cons in every new application or music competition concept. For instance, the students are able learn to know music from different periodx and recognize songs upon hearing them when they play the games. The TV singing competition may inspire teenagers to sing and learn music. In spite of the accumulation of top-of-the-chart songs, other music may also become part of a young person's life.  In some cases teenagers could learn to recognize music from their parents' era and in some cases even start to listen to that music.


The main challenge may lie beneath the rapid development of the technology. Yet there are not suitable pedagogical approaches for supporting students with their different combinations of popular culture concepts and experimentations with music technology. The know-how might fragment into pieces and teachers are unable to follow the new trends in the world of the next generation. Also, the teacher's basic attitude may be reluctant.  A teacher can be seen also as a guide to music cultures and students really need guidance to survive in the complex media field with its be-a-celebrity kind of attitude.

Sometimes students do not reveal what their sources of inspiration have been when they wish to learn music. In short: to move ahead, there must be enough time for dialogue between teacher and student in order to attain mutual understanding.




Variations in Bass Strength over Time in Popular Music


Kristoffer Jensen

Associate Professor, Department of Architecture, Design and Media Technology, Aalborg University Esbjerg
NNIMIPA Coordinator, Aalborg University Esbjerg, Esbjerg, Denmark 


I will discuss recent finding in the evolution of the relative strength of low frequencies (bass) over time in popular music. In part, I have discovered that there is a static law, saying that the relative bass strength is static until a given year, which is different depending on the frequency, but there exist also modulations on top of these static changes. The goal of this presentation is to discuss the reasons for these modulations that may be related to genre, or perhaps societal changes. As such, this may be an indication of how music and society are related.




The Development of Some Empirical Approaches to Integrating the Physicality of Musical Performance with the Philosophy of Music


Cynthia M. Grund (on site)

Associate Professor, Institute for the Study of Culture, University of Southern Denmark. Chief Coordinator for NNIMIPA and NNIMIPA-coordinator for SDU; NordForsk Project Manager


William Westney (via video conference)

Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Piano, Browning Artist-in-Resid​ence; School of Music, Texas Tech University. Hans Christian Andersen Guest Professorial Fellow at SDU 2009-2010. NNIMIPA delegate representing the University of Southern Denmark.


In this paper we report and reflect on an in-progress empirical study of piano performance and how it is perceived. Selected as one of the charter projects funded within a groundbreaking initiative to promote transdisciplinary research at Texas Tech University in 2012, the study is specifically designed to address philosophical concerns about the interrelationship of musical meaning and embodiment. This research is being carried out by an international team comprising a concert pianist, a philosopher (the authors and presenters of the paper here summarized), a neuroscientist and an engineer specializing in motion-capture technology.  

     We introduced this study at last year's London NNIMIPA meeting, and much has happened since then:  
     Inspired by prior work on musical gesture by Godøy, Leman, Jensenius and others, the presenters are pursuing the investigation of musical meaning and expression by first distilling the movements of performing instrumentalists into the movements of their avatars generated by markered motion capture technology. This remediation of their performances reduces the movement and gesturing of the performers to something that is perceived far more clearly in terms of form than is the case in raw video recordings.
     During lab sessions conducted in October 2012, each pianist in the study was asked to give two renditions of an expressive piece by Grieg (“Cowherd’s Song”) and two renditions of a crisply technical one (“Scherzo”) by Hummel. In every case the first rendition was to be played according to one specific instruction given by the researchers, and the second one according to a contrasting instruction. This pair of instructions was identical for all performers.
     The next phase of experimentation in May 2013 moved the motion capture results into an innovative context of investigation. Two groups of subjects – (1) trained classical-music performers, and (2) others who have been identified as appreciators of classical music, but without any training as instrumentalists – were placed inside an fMRI apparatus wearing noise-cancelling headphones and positioned so as to view a computer screen. They watched and listened to the performances as reproduced on the avatar videos. A battery of questions answerable on a seven-point Likert scale was posed on the screen after each performance, and the subjects answered these questions by simple cursor manipulation. The questions gauged degree of engagement, level of experienced congruence between the motions of the avatars and the music produced, experienced meaningfulness of the performances, and the like.

     Much base-line neuroscientific research is available regarding the location of emotional, imaginative, and pleasure-related responses within the brain. Among the main motivations for involving brain-scanning technology are thus (1) to see what effects the clearly different performance strategies give rise to in the various brain centers; and (2) to compare the stated reactions of subjects with what is revealed by these brain patterns.

     Video and audio documentation of the experiments will be shown, and this is interesting in its own right. There is much data processing left to do before definitive results are available; hopefully the full research team will be able to present some of these at the NNIMIPA-CMMR meeting in Marseille in October 2013.

     We hope that - ultimately - we will be provided with some clues as to the character of the physical mechanisms that underlie our attribution of meaning to music. 



Lunch Break




Other pre-RMA-MPSG-conference sessions which NNIMIPA-delegates are welcome to attend.




Coffee Break

17:00-18:30 NNIMIPA SESSION II (St Davids Room)




Report on De Montfort Gesture-Data Analysis Project Using NNIMIPA-Data from the Lab Session in Oslo, February 2010


Jenny Carter

Principal Lecturer in Computing. Course Leader: MSc Intelligent Systems & Robotics; MSc Intelligent Systems. Centre for Computational Intelligence at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK. Affiliated with NNIMIPA since primo 2012 via The University of Southern Denmark


Samad Ahmadi, Reader in Optimisation and Computational Intelligence, Co-Director of the Virtual reality and Assisted Living Research Group (Vir.AL); Member of the Center for Computational Intelligence (CCI); Principal Lecturer, School of Computer Science and Informatics, Faculty of Technology, De Montfort University, Leicester, UK). Affiliated with NNIMIPA since medio 2012 via The University of Southern Denmark.


We heartily welcome Jenny Carter and Samad Ahmadi to their first NNIMIPA meeting. Jenny is responsible for having provided NNIMIPA with yet another "branch" at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK, and we look forward to hearing about the findings made by the DeMontfort group led by Jenny and Samad with regard to the Oslo data. (See for some background). Jenny and NNIMIPA found each other through the mediation of Barry Eaglestone, and Jenny introduced us to Samad, so the network is truly, well, networking!

 17:30-18:30 Concert lecture


Charles Valentin Alkan: The Pros and Cons of Virtuosity


Morten Heide
Pianist and Choral Director, NNIMIPA-delegate at large representing The Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, Southern Denmark (AMDA), Odense, Denmark

As we celebrate the 200th anniversary of French composer Ch. V. Alkan (1813-1888), it's worth asking once again why this great and eccentric innovator within the piano repertoire isn't played more often, but is still overshadowed by his friends and contemporaries Liszt and Chopin, as well as by composers such as Schumann and Mendelssohn.
In today’s presentation, I will propose some answers to the following questions:
- What qualities are to be found in Alkan's music?

- What can Alkan’s piano music offer that is different from that of the other four composers? 
- Even though Alkan's piano music is often described as impossible to play, is it all about tremendously difficult, hand-breaking virtuosity?

- Tradition and innovation are contradictions, so where do we place Alkan's music? 

- And is there room or need for a revival of this great innovator's  music today? 


Throughout the lecture, the musical material under discussion will be exemplified by means of scores, recordings, and live piano performance by Morten Heide.

Friday, July 19, 2013


Day One of the Third Annual Conference of the RMA-MPSG.  Please see the RMA-MPSG conference program here for details.


Saturday, July 20, 2013


Day Two of the Third Annual Conference of the RMA-MPSG.  Please see the RMA-MPSG conference program here for details. Please note that during Parallel session III a. Gesture and Touch, Kristoffer Jensen (Aalborg University Esbjerg & NNIMIPA) & Søren R. Frimodt-Møller (Aalborg University Esbjerg & NNIMIPA) - will be presenting NNIMIPA-related work in a paper entitled Capturing the Role of Gesture in Music Performance.


Sunday, July 21, 2013


NNIMIPA Network Planning and Coordination Day 10:00-17:00 at, University of London's Canterbury Hall, one of the three 'Garden Halls'. NNIMIPA members will be provided with an agenda.


 Monday, July 22, 2013


Depart London.




     Nordic Network for the

     Integration of

     Music Informatics,

     Performance and Aesthetics



for a four-day multi-event in London.

This year it takes place July 18-21, 2013 on the occasion of the Third Annual Conference of the RMA-MPSG which will be held at King’s College London on July 19-20, 2013.

once again holds a meeting in conjunction with