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The performing musician in the 21st century

A study looking at the skills required of a portfolio musician in a globalised music industry.

This project seeks to help realise CEMPE’s vision to train outstanding musicians in a rapidly evolving global music industry. The application relates to the research topic “Reinforcing the correlation between study and practice for music students”. The aim of the project is to develop a common vocabulary to describe new knowledge and experiences relating to freelancing, portfolio musicianship and artistic entrepreneurship – all of them domains that have seen very little research in Norway. In my postdoc project I will take a theoretical, conceptual and practical approach to these domains. My overall aim is to define elements, concepts and tools that may be relevant to the new performance practices that today’s and tomorrow’s musicians will have to adopt. There are both historical and forward-looking elements to this knowledge: it can help us understand how the role of the musician has evolved and, not least, how it can be developed further.

The technological, economic and cultural advances made over the past 20–30 years tell us that the future role of the musician requires knowledge and skills that experts from the older generation often lack. The aim is to incorporate this new knowledge into the teaching taking place at the NMH through publications and other research dissemination and to share it with other educational institutions and academic communities both in Norway and abroad.


Orning, Tanja (2016). ”Eksperimentell praksis – eksperimentell vurdering”. ["Experimental practice – experimental assessment"]. Essay written for the Arts Council Norway’s research programme “Art, Culture and Quality”.

Orning, Tanja (2015). "Modernist performance practice and Werktreue - practice and ethics in performance of postwar complex music", chapter in Transformations of Musical Modernism, Cambridge University Press, Julian Johnsen and Erling Guldbrandsen, ed.

Orning, Tanja (2014). "The polyphonic performer"; PhD thesis. NMH publication.

Orning, Tanja (2013). "Pression revised – Anatomy of sound, notated energy and performance practice" i in Sound and Score, an Orpheus Institute publication. 2013.

Orning, Tanja (2012). "Pression – a Performance Study" in Music Performance Research.

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Published: Jun 14, 2017 — Last updated: Jun 11, 2024