International Council for Traditions of Music and Dance

A Non-Governmental Organization in Formal Consultative Relations with UNESCO

Next Meeting - Vienna Phonogrammarchiv, March 6 – 10, 2012, Vienna

Study Group on Historical Sources of Traditional Music
Chair: Dr. Susanne Ziegler & Dr. Ingrid Åkesson
Berlin, May 2011

Dear Colleagues,

We are happy to announce that the next meeting of our Study Group will take place by invitation of the Vienna Phonogrammarchiv from March 6 – 10, 2012 in Vienna. The conference site will be the main building of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. Gerda Lechleitner has kindly offered to serve as contact person and local organiser for the forthcoming STGR meeting. The conference will start on March 6 and end on March 10, 2012. On the last day we will have the opportunity to visit to the Vienna Phonogrammarchiv.

At the moment the local organiser cannot provide any financial support, so please try to get funding for travel, accommodations and stay in Vienna from your home institution, if possible. The local organiser shall, however, ask for financial support and we will keep you informed about that. In any case, we will try to keep the costs as low as possible.

The meeting will focus on two different but related topics:

1. Historical sources and contemporary fieldwork in ethnomusicology – relationship, dialogue, mutual benefit.
Historical sources are, today, easily accessible and already in use in manifold ethnomusicological studies. Historical sources include all types of ethnomusicological materials from the transcriptions and manuscripts of early collectors to the beginnings of sound recording in the late 19th c. up to current times. Knowledge of historical sources deepens and widens the approach to contemporary fieldwork. "Questioning fieldwork" offers the opportunity for the researcher him or herself, as well as other researchers, to rethink and evaluate the results of a study. Comparing early fieldwork with more recent efforts can offer a different understanding of change in cultural processes.
The dialogue between printed and aural, archival and recent materials, including results based on fieldwork (sound recordings, field notes, video recordings, photographs, interviews etc.), implies a specific kind of relationship, which should be studied and evaluated to our mutual benefit.

2. Multidisciplinary approaches to the study of historical sources of traditional music.
Historical sources of traditional music are the ideal materials to be researched from different aspects. In general, there is no single approach to sources, but many possible ways to view them. Whereas the ethnomusicologist focuses on the sound, the linguist will see the same recordings from another perspective. Ethnomusicologists, linguists, historians, ethnologists,
cultural anthropologists, folklorists – we each have our own scientific background and apply specific research methods. Views from outside of the field of ethnomusicology are extremely helpful and can considerably expand our knowledge about historical sources of traditional music. We therefore encourage colleagues to submit papers within the areas of ethnomusicology, folklore, literature, ethnology, history, linguistics etc.
Paper proposals, not exceeding 300 words, should be sent to the programme committee consisting of Susanne Ziegler, Ingrid Åkesson, and Gerda Lechleitner before October 1st, 2011. We also encourage presentations in the format of panels, which should consist of at least three presenters.

If you have any questions regarding the Study Group on Historical Sources, former meetings and/or publications and the forthcoming Vienna meeting, please contact us.

We look forward to seeing you in Vienna!

Best wishes,

Susanne Ziegler, Chair (
Ingrid Åkesson, Co-chair (
Gerda Lechleitner, local organiser (