Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre

The Art of Performance as Cultural Practice



Subject Title: The Art of Performance as Cultural Practice 

Taught by: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Lina Navickaitė-Martinelli

For more on the lecturer see:

Acad. Cycle 

ECTS credits



Contact hours



1 semester



Year of study

Weekly lectures/seminars



1 / 14 seminars per semester

General knowledge of music history, interest into concert life and cultural press, critical reflection on music performance practices





Written / oral

10-point scale (discussions, seminar participation – 50%, exam: short essay and its presentation – 50%)

Aim and objectives

The course pays attention to a specific phenomenon of cultural life, namely, performers of music – the personas and their art. The aim is to introduce to the students a broad variety of topics related to the art of music performance as cultural practice; to the issues of the performers’ activities and their surrounding cultural contexts; to enhance the ability of perceiving, analyzing and evaluating the art of music performance from both practical and socio-cultural perspectives. Lectures and seminars shall present a variety of video and audio recordings, movies on musicians and other related materials. Guided discussions and analyses of case-studies shall constitute the core of the seminars.

 After completing the course, students will:

- get acquainted with the historical development of the art of music performance;

- be able to evaluate the impact of socio-cultural circumstances on the practices of music performance;

- get acquainted with the distinct performers of various styles and periods;

- get acquainted with the key-concepts and issues within the art of music performance;

- develop critical thinking within the context of music performance art and its practices;

- be able to compare various Western music performance practices;

- be able to understand and describe the role of a performer in the creative process;

- be able to apply their general knowledge on performance art to the specific case-studies.


Topics of the course (among others):

- What is Music Performance: (1) Concepts and Ideas; (2) The Attitudes of Various Epochs;

- Various Media for Performance Practices;

- Recording Technologies: Reproduction and Dissemination of Music Performance;

- Body is a Message: Performer’s Corporeality;

- Authenticity in Music Performance;

- Performance of Contemporary Music: Composer-Performer Relation;

- Visualization of the Performance Art;

- The World of Personas: From Romantic Virtuosos to Pop Stars and Back to the Castrati.


Performing Music. Shared Concerns [Jonathan Dunsby]. – Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2002; Piano Performance in a Semiotic Key : Society, Musical Canon and Novel Discourses [Lina Navickaitė-Martinelli]. - Helsinki: Semiotic Society of Finland, 2014; The Practice of Performance: Studies in Musical Interpretation [John Rink, ed.]. – Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005.