Research Library

As part of our commitment to making our work and outputs accessible, and to generate further dialogue on the issues we explore, IICSI has created an online Research Library. Here you will find a range of pieces including films, articles, think pieces, and interviews. Please use the search function or browse, and check back again as this library will be updated regularly.

Research outcomes related to the Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice project (2007-2013) are available in the ICASP Research Collection.


Deep Listening at the End of the World

Deep listening is a musical practice developed by musician and composer Pauline Oliveros for generating increased attention to sound.

Jeannette Hicks, PhD candidate and Research Assistant for the IICSI reflects on the experience of improvising and deep listening, which reveals the potential for bridging cultural and perceived difference, at Musical Improvisation at Land’s End camp.

Presented by IICSI, MILE camp seeks to develop innovative strategies to put aspiring musicians in direct and meaningful contact with professional improvisers.

Crepuscule in Guelph

Improviser-in-Residence 2015-16 Douglas R. Ewart, Feedback and Reflections

The Improviser-in-Residence 2015-16 Douglas R. Ewart, Feedback and Reflections report is an amalgamation of the feedback gleaned from the Crepuscule participant surveys and the post-event, Crepuscule team focus-group evaluation.

improv-and-social-aesthetics book cover

Improvisation and Social Aesthetics

Edited by Georgina Born, Eric Lewis, and Will Straw, this new volume addresses a wide range of improvised art and music forms in order to locate improvisation as a key site of mediation between the social and the aesthetic.

navid navab's practices of everyday life at the 2016 GJFC

Navid Navab – Practices of Everyday Life | Cooking (GJFC 2016)

Composer by Navid Navab discusses his thoughts and processes behind Practices of Everyday Life | Cooking, his synaesthetic performance organized around a chef, an enchanted kitchenette, and sonified ingredients.

rainbow at MILE camp

Musical Improvisation at Land’s End / Coin-du-Banc en Folie!

In the summer of 2016, the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI), with support from the Musagetes Foundation and the Chawkers Foundation, mounted the inaugural session of a bilingual improvised music camp entitled Musical Improvisation at Land’s End / Coin-du-Banc en Folie! in Coin-du-Banc, in the Gaspésie region of Québec. [includes the 2016 film trailer]

What We All Long For Dionne Brand book cover

Think Piece: Oku’s Sounds: Anthony Braxton and Musical Improvisation in Dionne Brand’s What We All Long For

Improvised music plays an important role in Dionne Brand’s 2005 novel What We All Long For, which tells the intertwined story of four ethnically and racially diverse twenty-somethings living in downtown Toronto.

In this Think Piece, Lefrense details how the musical practices of one of the four protagonists Oku, a second-generation Caribbean-Canadian, projects his “politics of being” through a personally curated soundtrack.

Recipes for Life Cookbook

In 2015/16, IICSI and partners DodoLab and Immigrant Services Guelph-Wellington worked together on a project called “Recipe for Life.” Recipe for Life brought a group of newcomers and other Guelph residents together to eat delicious food, to appreciate the role of food in their lives and identities, and to discuss ways that improvisation can help in adapting…

Improvising with Community: An Evaluation of a Community Vocal Improvisation Program

This report presents the findings of a program evaluation of vocal improvisation programming offered in Guelph from March to June 2014. The program consisted of a series of vocal improvisation workshops open to any interested participants, a symposium on vocal improvisation that was also open to the public, and a final public performance by workshop members. The program was developed and implemented by Improvisation, Community, and Social Practice (ICASP) postdoctoral fellow Chris Tonelli.

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Play Who You Are 2015: Call and Response (Part Two)

Call and Response is part two, of a two part series about the 2015 Play Who You Are camp, hosted by Rainbow Programs for Children at the University of Guelph, and facilitated by pianist/improviser/student music therapist Laura Stinson.

refuge screenshot


Refuge was an arts-based inquiry into the history and ongoing significance of the underground railway and the struggles and legacies of freedom seekers.

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