Composing collectivity: exploring musical performance in Havana

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Issue Date
2014-08-08
Authors
Gilbert, Andrea
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Subject
Cuba
Havana
Hybridity
Music
Performance
Visual Ethnography
Abstract
Composing collectivity is a visual ethnography that explores musical performance in Havana, using experimental techniques to create a convergence of art, documentary and ethnography. In Cuba music is a way of life, a collective practice and a defining symbol of culture and identity, but also an intriguing example of intercultural performance: performances that incorporate multicultural influences as a component of artistic creation. This research not only explores new understandings of cultural hybridity and intercultural performance, but also encourages consideration of the role of artistic freedom, experimentation and innovation within the visual ethnographic paradigm. The film and accompanying essay exemplify Cuban music not only as a positive artistic outcome of intercultural exchange, but also the ways in which different film styles can be used to explore society and culture within ethnographic research.
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