Looking forward to my sabbatical work, 2016, for which I am based at the Nova University in Lisbon. Working alongside Prof Isabel Pires, I will continue previous work carried out in Brazil during 2014 (supported by a UK HEA International Scholarship) where, through ethnographic methodologies, I built a network of improvisers focusing on free improvisatory practices. The work is documented on this Blog: https://improvisationinbrazil.wordpress.com
The aim of this period of study in Portugal will allow me to pursue similar ethnographic work in the area of music improvisation. I will interview over 50 musicians, event and venue organisers and produce an online portfolio with edited interviews. This will allow me to trace the story and influences of improvisation practices in Portugal.
The research period will allow me to perform with several Portuguese musicians, – and I am hoping to build on already established networks and contacts with Portuguese musicians, as I have been working with improvisers in Portugal over the last ten years.
The aim is to build a strong and sustainable international network that researches the topic of improvisation in terms of practice, within a musicological approach and in terms of the wider social and cultural influences of improvisation in areas other than music.
Currently, I am involved in a EU network that looks at improvisation within the higher education curriculum (led by the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre in Tallinn). The event is part of the Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership Project “Modernizing European Higher Music Education through Improvisation (METRIC)”.