Research Topic

Cognition and Music Performance

About this Research Topic

Music performance has been associated with different cognitive processes due to its complex demands. It requires the integration of auditory and visual stimuli, kinaesthetic control, pattern recognition, and memory processes which entails attentional and executive functioning resources beyond instrumental ...

Music performance has been associated with different cognitive processes due to its complex demands. It requires the integration of auditory and visual stimuli, kinaesthetic control, pattern recognition, and memory processes which entails attentional and executive functioning resources beyond instrumental practice.
There is a broad number of studies that have reported cognitive improvements associated with music training when musicians and non-musicians have been compared. The available evidence seems to support not only the involvement of different cognitive processes in music performance, but also their enhancement through practice. However, research focused on the analysis of individual differences in cognitive processing during performance among musicians is scarce.
Considering performing rehearsed repertoire, playing from memory, playing by ear, sigh-treading and improvising as the five basic types of solo and group music performance, it is relevant to explore the implication on them of different processes linked to codification, retrieval or anticipation, among others.

Musical practice has revealed as the main predictor of individual differences among musicians, but some recent studies have reported the significant involvement of working memory, inhibition, and cognitive flexibility executive processes during performance at sight. Thus, the goal of this Research Topic is to extend this evidence to other types of performance as well as to analyze the different cognitive demands of solo and group performance.

Empirical contributions that address the following topics are welcome, but are not limited to:
• Cognitive demands of rehearsed performance, memory performance, ear performance, sight-reading or improvisation;
• Commonalities and differences among different types of music performance;
• Individual differences in cognitive processing among musicians of different ages and training stages;
• Synchronization in group performance;
• Cognitive processing in the integration of visual, auditory, and motor stimuli;
• Neural basis of music performance;
• Music Performance Anxiety


Keywords: cognitive processing, individual differences, rehearsed performance, memory performance, ear performance, sight-reading, improvisation, solo and group performance, music performance anxiety


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

31 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

31 May 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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