Seminars

The dance -­ music relationship: motion dynamic congruency and beyond

Aida Fernández Cotarelo

The relationship between dance and music is an ancient marriage, so intimate that in many languages the words for dance and music are often interchangeable, if not    the same. It cannot be a coincidence that rituals and social celebrations from virtually every nation present dance and music together much more often than other hybrid forms   
(like dance and painting, or music and sculpture)
and that normally dance artistic performances are accompanied by music.However, thereare, to my knowledge, very few aesthetic approaches to this topic. Carroll (2013) provides an account on   
the expressive relation between dance and music, which is considered by him a matter of psychological congruency between the perceived music's motion and that of the dancers's movements. My aim is to speculate about further functions and types of relations, and critically consider the weight that empirical evidence of the sort consider by Carroll may have in an aesthetic account. I consider two exes along which the relation may take place. One considers the intentional character of the dance cum music artwork, and distinguishes between expressive, formal and conceptual  relations. The other most basic level looks at the locus of dance and the medium of music (human movement and sound)
and    discriminates some types of formal and expressive relations. To sum up, I focus on two issues: a) the notion of dance and music's timing, in which dance is seen as a response to music; and b) the psychological susceptibility to respond in congruency with certain dynamics perceived in music.