Intercultural Tele-Improvisatory Performance in Action

  • Roger MillsEmail author
Part of the Springer Series on Cultural Computing book series (SSCC)


This chapter presents the findings of a detailed analysis of three live intercultural tele-improvisatory performances using the telematic audio platform eJAMMING. Each performance featured geographically dispersed musicians of diverse cultures and musical traditions performing together across local and global distances. DIAF (Distributed Interaction Analytical Framework) was used to examine audio-visual multiscreen video clips, score transcriptions of musical interaction, and VCO (video cued recall) interview transcripts of musicians’ verbalised experiences. The analysis mapped correlations between instances of musical interaction, musicians’ physical performances and their creative and cognitive experiences to gain a greater understanding of their distributed engagement. It found that culture and ritual played a pivotal in structuring online performers perception and responses to tel-improvisatory interaction through embodied patterns of sound, which act as a bridge between cross-cultural performance practices. It will be useful to re-familiarise ourselves with the following three critical areas of the investigation:

  1. 1.

    How cross-cultural performers express and perceive intentionality and causation in tele-improvisatory interaction;

  2. 2.

    The role of culture in the interpretation of significance and meaning-making in tele-improvisatory musical dialogues; and

  3. 3.

    The approaches and strategies that networked performers develop to interact at different stages of the improvisation.


DIAF uses a triangulated methodology to investigate each of these areas through the examination of improvisatory interaction in music and sound, musicians’ performative gestures, and their verbalised strategic thought processes. While the findings reflect the analysis of these particular groups of improvisers, they also illustrate how DIAF can be used for cross-disciplinary research purposes. The chapter begins by outlining DIAF as an analytical model, and the methodological approach that underpins it.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Technology SydneySydneyAustralia

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