What about this experience was new or different for you? What impressed you about the concert experience and why?


The written paper for this course will be a musical ethnography. A  musical ethnography is a written representation, description, and  interpretation of some aspect of a musical culture. The assignment for  this course is to write a 5+ page (approximately 1250+ words, the  bibliography does not count as a page in this count!) ethnography and  concert review based on your attendance of a musical event in the St.  Louis metropolitan area.

The format of the paper should (loosely) follow the following outline:

  1. Introduction (1 paragraph)
  2. Background information of the music being performed. This is the  portion of the paper that should reflect research and should be  supported with references. (2-3 pages)
  3. The physical setting of the concert venue and a description of the  performance itself and the affective experience (how the music “moved”  you, good or bad!) (1-2 pages)
  4. Any other reactions you would like to share, or even thoughts from  the performers about the music and/or performance, if possible.
  5. Conclusion (1 paragraph)
  6. Bibliography

Here are a few helpful suggestions for completing your project:

  • Spend a few days thinking about what type of music you would like to  see, the best choice for this project would be something outside of  your “comfort zone.” For suggestions, check the weekend section of the  newspaper, local college and university music departments, St. Louis  Magazine, etc.
  • Once you have chosen a concert, prepare for your concert experience  by doing some background research on the type of music you would like to  see, especially its historical and cultural origins. Be sure to take  the bibliographical information from all of your sources! (Wikipedia is  NOT a source!) This background research will become part 2 of the  suggested format.
  • On the day/night of the concert, bring a small notepad and write  down anything that strikes you as interesting. The more notes you take,  the easier it will be to write your paper!
  • Gather your materials and write the concert review/ethnography. The  best way to do this is to “tell a story” of your musical experience.  Always remember that you are writing an academic paper (so avoid  contractions, colloquialisms and slang), but do try to maintain a  conversational tone. Perhaps ask yourself the following questions:
    • What about this experience was new or different for you?
    • What impressed you about the concert experience and why?
    • Which selection appealed to you the most? Explain what it was about the music/performance that made it stand out. Be specific.
    • If there was a selection that you did not enjoy, why didn't you enjoy it?

Papers should be submitted into Canvas for grading no  later than the Wednesday of the penultimate (next to last) week of  classes.

The paper should be typed with 12-point Times New Roman font (or  equivalent), double-spaced, and have one-inch margins on all four sides  of each page. All citations and bibliography should use the Turabian/Chicago Manual of Style (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.  formatting. It should be without a cover sheet and with the student  name and date single-spaced in the upper right-hand corner of the first  page. The bibliography should be on a separate page after the main body  of the paper.

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