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  • 1.
    Forssell, Jonas
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera. Konstnärliga fakulteten vid Lunds universitet.
    Textens transfigurationer2015Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis focuses on the opera text enlightened from four different perspectives: the translator, the librettist, the composer and finally the singer, based on the author’s thirty years of professsional practice, in the spirit of Donald A. Schön’s study from 1983: The Reflective Practitioner; How professionals think in action. The method is basically hermeneutic and the esthetics inspired by Umberto Eco’s Opera Aperta (”The Open Work”) from 1962. Questions from within the perspective of the translator are: In what ways does opera translation differ from other forms of translation, and how does an opera translator work? What is the history of “opera in the ver-nacular” compared to “opera in original language” and are singable translations needed whatsoever in the modern era of subtitling? The perspective of the librettist examines the opera form’s SWOT-analysis, the differences from other “storytelling” art forms, the task of making an adaption compared to choosing to create an original plot, the matter of taste and building the form from dramaturgical principles, the shaping of aria texts, the importance of tight collaboration and cutting, cutting, cutting (“a libretto cannot be short enough” Edgar Istel, 1922). The composer’s perspective contains practical and theoretical words of advice and examples from practice, together with a so ”think aloud”-study from within a composer’s thought process while working. The final chapter, from the singer’s perspective, focuses on whether modern vocal ideals and singing “in original language”, with subtitles, together with expanding performance halls, have made opera text harder to perceive, and rendered earlier established texting techniques forgotten or obsolete. The answers to all these questions are complex. This thesis concludes that the opera form is still expanding, but not necessarily in the direction of creating a new, contemporary canon. “There are about 600 opera houses in the world, all are ‘National Galleries’, none is the Tate Modern” (Per-Erik Öhrn, 2012), but there are also opportunities. Almost all successful new opera productions in recent years have their librettos written in English, a language traditionnally regarded as “weak” in the field of opera. Opera audiences worldwide are nowadays accustomed to hearing and understanding sung English words and comprehending a dramatic context when expressed in English, thanks to 100 years of Anglo-American dominance in popular music and about 50 years of dominance in television and films.

  • 2.
    Lindal, Anna
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera. Göteborgs universitet.
    Musik och kunskapsbildning: Bor det en pedagog i varje musiker?2011In: Musikens kunskapsbildning: En festskrift til Bengt Olsson, / [ed] Monica Lindgren, Anna Frisk, Ingemar Henningsson, Johan Öberg, Göteborg: Art Monitor , 2011, 1, p. 121-122Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 3.
    Lindal, Anna
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera.
    Musikens frihet och begränsning: 16 variationer på ett tema2012In: Musikens frihet och begränsning: 16 variationer på ett tema / [ed] Magnus Haglund, Göteborg: Daidalos, 2012, 1Chapter in book (Other academic)
    Abstract [sv]

    Musiken behöver sina spänningstillstånd, sina osäkerheter och olikheter, sin balangsgång mellan traditionsförankring och vilja till förnyelse. Men den behöver också språk och samtal, kommunikation med andra uttrycksformer, dialog med det samhälle som omger musikskapandet. Musiken behöver orden, de kritiska sidobelysningarna, de passionerade omformuleringarna. En av utgångspunkterna för denna antologi om musiken som samtidsuttryck, är just frånvaron av sådana gränsöverskridande samtal. Varför tycks musiken så isolerad från en mer övergripande konst- och samhällsdiskussion? Visst är det märkligt med tanke på den centrala roll som musik spelar i många människors liv? Vad betyder exempelvis en så genomgripande händelse som tragedin på Utøya och de bombhärjade regeringskvarteren i Oslo för sättet att lyssna och förhålla sig till ljud? Ja, det finns en sådan text i denna bok, den norska sångerskan och författaren Jenny Hvals essä ”Sorgklangen”. Den berättar på ett konkret vis om konfrontationen med stadens och samhällets ljud, dagarna och veckorna efter terrorattentatet: ”Musik har blivit svårt. Det är inte längre möjligt att lyssna på den på samma sätt som förr, som om någon hade tryckt ned en distpedal över hela samhället som gör ljuden skarpa och främmande.” Boken har sin upprinnelse i ett forskningsprojekt kallat ”Mot ett konstmusikens utvidgade fält”, bedrivet 2008–2012, med stöd av Vetenskapsrådet. De deltagande har varit tonsättarna Ole Lützow-Holm och Anders Hultqvist, baserade i Göteborg, tonsättaren Henrik Hellstenius med hemvist i Oslo, violinisten Anna Lindal från Stockholm, samt Magnus Haglund, med bas i Göteborg, som medverkat som en sorts nedtecknare med uppgift att dokumentera projektets olika faser, samt att skapa en antologi med texter kring projektets huvudfrågeställningar. […] När projektet hunnit ungefär halvvägs bjöds en spegelgrupp in, med uppgiften att lyssna till berättelserna om de enskilda arbetena och att komma med egna reflektioner (samt att vid projektets slut medverka i antologin med egna bidrag). Gruppen bestod av pianisten och tonsättaren Mats Persson, koreografen Anna Koch, författaren och översättaren Cecilia Hansson, bildkonstnären Lina Selander, samt författaren och dramaturgen Magnus Florin. Redan här alltså ett utvidgat fält, ett försök att få musiken att träda i dialog med parallella konstförståelser, alternativa synsätt, andra praktiker

  • 4.
    Unander-Scharin, Carl
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera.
    Den stora ackumulatorn och uppgraderingens kontrapunkt2013In: Labbtanken / [ed] Nils Claesson, Stockholm: Stockholms dramatiska högskola , 2013, 1, p. 67-71Chapter in book (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Unander-Scharin, Carl
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera. KTH, Skolan för datavetenskap och kommunikation (CSC), Medieteknik och interaktionsdesign, MID.
    Extending Opera - Artist-led Explorations in Operatic Practice through Interactivity and Electronics2015Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    How can we re-empower opera singers, extending their control over accompaniment and vocal expressivity? To answer this question, I have opened a novel design space, Extending Opera, consisting of interactive artist–operated tools to be used on-stage. The research has its methodological groundings in Research through Design (RtD) and Research through the Arts (RttA). This particular method is coined "research-throughthe- art-form-opera" – as I have worked within the realms and traditions of opera, probing its boundaries by designing, researching and creating through its own artistic toolbox.

    Originally conceived for personal use, the artifacts were later used by other singers and incorporated in performances of opera in small and large scale. By composing and designing for the requirements in operatic productions, high demands on robustness were explored in and through custom-built interfaces.

    The work resulted in ten novel artifacts and performances exploring the expressivity of these tools. Extending Opera is guided by and probed through three questions:

    1. How can the design and creation of interactive, artist-operated instruments be informed by deep musical knowledge and be probed by the particular conditions surrounding an operatic production?

    2. What impact can interactive, artist-operated instruments have on the opera singers themselves and on their vocal technique?

    3. How can interactive, artist-operated instruments empower opera singers, thus challenging contemporary power hierarchies – thereby reconnecting to the explorative practice in opera's early days?

    My knowledge contribution has surfaced through artistic practice and consists of the exemplars and the artworks, as well as three abstractions – one procedure, one requirement and one experiential quality.

    Sensory Digital Intonation highlights how the fine-tuning of technologies and real-time interactivity is incorporated in a feed-back loop with artistic concerns and creativity.

    Performative Stamina ("The Premiere-Factor") highlights how the traditional procedures leading up to a premiere in opera influence the demands on robustness and reliability within the components and the overall design of the novel artifacts.

    Vocal Embodiment is an experiential quality that describes how the interactive artifacts change the singing itself.

    In the conclusion, Artistic Re–Empowerment is discussed, proposing that power structures in opera have been probed through the use of the novel artist-operated interactive instruments.

  • 6.
    Unander-Scharin, Carl
    et al.
    Stockholm University of the Arts, University College of Opera. Kungliga tekniska högskolan.
    Unander-Scharin, ÅsaLuleå tekniska universitet.Höök, KristinaKungliga tekniska högskolan.
    The Vocal Chorder: – Empowering Opera Singers with a Large Interactive Instrument2014Conference proceedings (editor) (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    With The Vocal Chorder, a large interactive instrument tocreate accompaniment, opera singers can get more powerover the performance. The device allows performers to interactivelyaccompany themselves through pushing, leaningon and bending steel wires. The design was guided by theunique needs of the solo-singer, explored through autobiographicaldesign and material explorations, some on stage,and later tested by other singers. We discuss how designingfor opera and for the stage requires extraordinary durabilityand how opera performances can change with a bodilyorientedinstrument such as The Vocal Chorder. Through adesignerly exploration, we arrived at a device that offered(1) a tool for singers to take control over the rhythmicalpace and overall artistic and aesthetic outcome of their performances,(2) an enriched sense of embodiment betweentheir voice and the overall performance; and (3) a means toempower opera singers on stage.

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