Daniel Levitin Shows How Musicians Communicate Emotion

Daniel J. Levitin, author of the best-selling books This Is Your Brain On Music and The World In Six Songs, is James McGill Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Neuroscience at McGill University in Montreal. Levitin’s most recent study tries to explain how musicians communicate emotion by manipulating the “expression” of a musical piece. His research shows that variations in the timing of a performance have an even greater emotional impact than do variations in the loudness of playing. “The skilled pianist has learned to communicate musical emotion primarily by making some notes longer and some shorter, some louder and some softer – just like we do in normal conversation.”

Don’t miss the second part of the video here.

By profession, Matthias Rascher teaches English and History at a High School in northern Bavaria, Germany. In his free time he scours the web for good links and posts the best finds on Twitter.

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