After another nine fabulous days in Kürten for the Stockhausen Courses and Concerts, I was struck yet again by what a marvellous opportunity those courses are for sharing ideas and thoughts about Stockhausen's music in a level of depth that is not possible in many other environments. I thought there were a lot of really interesting seminars and lectures that explored ideas thoroughly but also in ways that were interesting and accessible to people who are not academic musicologists.
I often think that those of us who identify as musicologists do this far too rarely. Performers perform for the public; composers compose for audiences - but often, as musicologists (or, for that matter, any of us who approach music, and Stockhausen's music in particular, from a primarily academically-oriented angle) we sometimes do not get to those who are passionate and interested about Stockhausen's music, or who are curious about finding out out more, but are not part of the academic community.
For this reason, I thought it might be a good idea to establish a website where Stockhausen "scholars" (and I mean that word very broadly - basically people absorbed or deeply interested in Stockhausen's music, rather than musicologists or academics only) can upload thoughtful and serious papers about different aspects of Stockhausen's music, but that cater for this more general audience, rather than for the academic community who read musicological journals. In a sense, I guess it would be like a Stockhausen-specific version of academia.edu, but with an emphasis on finding a balance between, on the one hand, thorough and considered thinking and, on the other hand, accessibility to a non-academic but nevertheless intellectually engaged and curious audience.
I am keen to explore the processes for establishing such a platform and for giving some thought to the best way of making it work, taking into consideration things such as moderation, establishing guidelines for papers, issues around intellectual property, and enabling discussion and responses to the papers people upload.I think it would be useful for such a website to have some degree of moderation in the sense of oversight of papers before they are uploaded to ensure that there are some broad safeguards around ensuring that the content of the site remains true to its purpose, but to do this in a way that is not too restrictive and that encourages newly emerging ideas to be put into its domain. Maybe a small groups of reviewers might be a way to do this, but i would think that this should be done in a way that has a default position of accepting contributions and uploading them and only deciding against this if for some reason the work being submitted lay too far outside the purpose of the whole thing.
Anyway, these thoughts are only developing, but i would be keen (a) to hear what others think of the idea and (b) who might like to be involved.
To me, this idea seems beautiful and fruitful. I would think the first step could be to contact people we know, who could be interested and able to contribute essays. If there is enough support, then you really should initiate this project!!
Thank you Thomas for the encouragement and I will do as you suggest. I will also discuss it with the Stiftung because i would love for them to be connected with such a project in whatever way they choose, even if it is simply to always be alerted when papers are posted, so they can have access to them if they choose. They may not have the time to be involved more actively than that, but it would be great if they were also able to comment from time to time on ideas as they emerge through people's input.
I will need to seek out help on establishing the actual website, but i have people back home in Australia who I think could help me with this.
Thanks Jerry - yes, it most definitely makes sense to avoid duplication and, most importantly, competition. Do you have contact details for Jim? We spoke briefly during the courses, but did not exchange contacts. Or, alternatively, please feel free to pass on my email address to Jim.
I feel that it could be useful to have a discussion-forum on the music of Stockhausen. There are so many people from all over the world, young and old, learned and eager to get into contact with this musical world: musicologists, composers, musicians, music lovers; people who plan concerts - who write books or have to give lectures and so on. So there should be much stuff, many ideas that we can share. And when we have open questions, there may be people who studied just that and could give a hint or a stimulus.
A problem might be the English language, but i feel that is the only possibility that many people who are interested can participate. And we can exercise tolerance to mistakes!