Sunday, August 25, 2013

We listen to classical music with our eyes

When it comes to classical music competitions, one could be forgiven for thinking how well someone plays is the single most important factor.

New research conducted by a recent Harvard graduate, however, suggests otherwise.

In a study by Chia-Jung Tsay, who last year earned a Ph.D. in organizational behavior with a secondary Ph.D. field in music, nearly all participants — including highly trained musicians — were better able to identify the winners of competitions by watching silent video clips than by listening to audio recordings. The work was described in a paper published this month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
--Peter Reuell, Harvard Gazette, on the stagecraft of musical performance. HT: Marginal Revolution