Grant focuses on central Australian song lines

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Researchers at the University of Adelaide have been awarded a grant to focus on song lines from central Australia. The project builds knowledge, understanding and application of the complex tuning systems that underlie traditional Indigenous musical practices.

The team received $1,032,900 over three years through the Australian Research Council’s Discovery Indigenous program.

“The project will develop an in-depth understanding of what Indigenous tuning systems are, how they are organized and how they are and can be applied by Indigenous artists in collaboration with contemporary ensembles,” said Dr. Dylan Crismani, Master lectures at the University of Adelaide. for Indigenous Studies in Music (CASM).

“We will use a unique methodology that combines contemporary Indigenous and Western musical performance practices with cutting-edge digital technologies.

“In doing so, we will advocate for a more authentic and equitable dialogue between Indigenous and non-Indigenous music creators, for the mutual benefit of musicians, audiences and society at large.

The project aims to revitalize dormant musical traditions in the Arabana and Wangkangurru communities in traditional and contemporary contexts.

A set of resources will be developed that will allow musicians from Arabana, Wangkangurru and Titjikala to integrate their musical cultural heritage into a contemporary setting.

“Ultimately, we aim to address the rapid loss of indigenous culture,” Dr Crismani said.

“Through extensive fieldwork, the project seeks to revitalize music and language, restore and repatriate deteriorated cultural artefacts, and reconnect community members with their intangible cultural heritage.

“The project will produce significant musical results that will be recorded and publicly released by the ABC.

“The team will work closely with community members throughout the project and beyond, to ensure project goals and community goals are aligned.”

“Ultimately, we aim to address the rapid loss of Indigenous culture. Through extensive fieldwork, the project aims to revitalize music and language, restore and repatriate deteriorated cultural artefacts, and reconnect community members with their intangible cultural heritage.

Professor Steve Larkin, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Indigenous Engagement, added: “This research project will be critically important in demonstrating how two distinct knowledge systems can contribute to new ways of thinking about contemporary cultural genres in a world digital.

“In this project, Indigenous and Western musical traditions become the foreground for generating a dialogue between Indigenous and non-Indigenous music makers to explore how the combination of their respective musical traditions can inform new forms of performance practice. musical while preserving the uniqueness and integrity of both. traditions.

“It is both exciting and innovative and will no doubt make a significant contribution to the Australian music industry.”

Professor Anton Middelberg, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), said: “This is an excellent example of the opportunities supported by the University for researchers to deliver impactful research results, which will inspire future generations of Indigenous Australians. to access and succeed in research and higher education.

The research team also includes Professor Aaron Corn, inaugural director of the Indigenous Knowledge Institute at the University of Melbourne; Dr. Luke Dollman, Associate Director, Elder Conservatorium of Music; Mr. Grayson Rotumah, Coordinator, Center for Native Music Studies; Dr. Gabriella Smart, Soundstream New Music; and Ms. Eleanor McCall, Mobile Language Team.

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