Torrent, Trickle - The Exploratory and the Performative in Doing Music

July 07, 2018

Andrew Czink

Saturday, July 7, 7:00PM–9:00PM, 303 E 8th Ave, Vancouver

Sponsored by SFU's Institute for the Humanities

What are we doing when we ‘do music?’ Traditional Western musical practices in the common practice era have concentrated on the idea of the ‘musical work’ as inscribed in a ‘score.’ Aspects of music that are difficult or impossible to notate have been marginalized as a result. Accomplished composer/performer/improviser Andrew Czink will focus on the action of performing music, particularly on improvising music without reference to a score at all: to consider music as a verb rather than a noun, in what Christopher Small has called ‘musicking.’ Czink will introduce his thought on his own performative musical practices and will perform the premier of a major new structured improvisation for solo piano, prepared specially for this event, entitled Torrent, Trickle.

Czink will outline four aspects of what he considers to be important to characterize what musicking is. First, musicking is a situated performative practice: it is done in a particular historical, cultural, geographical, and aesthetic milieu. Second, it is an embodied practice: it depends on the particularities of our embodiment, including both the ‘traditional’ exteroceptive senses as well as the less-often considered interoceptive senses. Third, it is a cognitive, prosthetic, and exploratory practice: it is a form of non-propositional or supra-rational thinking; it engages technologies to ‘reach into’ our enacted world; and it is exploratory in its impetus. Fourth, it is a sonorous practice: the primary result of musicking is the creation and articulation of sound. Sound and music produce powerful affective forces that influence our sense of self and connection to, and difference from, others. Subjectivity and intersubjectivity become deeply entangled in musical experience. This event provides an opportunity to experience and discuss the power of musicking.


“One of Canada’s most imaginative musicians,” (Craig Harris, All Music) Andrew Czink is a composer, pianist, audio engineer and educator based in Vancouver. He is co-director of the CD and concert producer earsay productions. His primary instrumental training was of a classical bent, with excursions into jazz and popular forms early on.  Along with exposure to, and study of, the music of other cultures, such as Javanese Gamelan, Hawaiian lap steel guitar, and Japanese Taiko Drumming, this suite of influences continue their hold on his musical thought. His music has been performed and broadcast throughout Europe, New Zealand, Australia, the USA, and Canada where he has received numerous awards, grants, and commissions. He is a music and audio instructor at LaSalle College Vancouver, and has completed an MA in Liberal Studies at SFU, with his research focusing on the development of an embodied epistemology of auditory experience. He is a PhD Candidate at Simon Fraser University, studying the philosophy of musical experience as a situated, embodied, cognitive, sonorous, and prosthetic practice from the perspective of the composer/improviser/performer. He has been composing, improvising, and creating both live acoustic and acousmatic forms of music in both stereo and multi-channel formats, for over 30 years.