The methodology for the proposed project involves a mix of (1) arts-based techniques regarding improvisation and composition in jazz, (2) analytical methods developed at the institute for jazz research at the University of Music and Performing Arts in Graz, (3) established methods for historical inquiry in jazz research, as well as (4) quantitative and qualitative methods derived from social sciences. The project collaborator Dr. Michael Kahr, a research-based artists and part-time senior lecturer at the institute for jazz, has the necessary competence to represent a communicative link between the two institutes and to investigate both, purely arts-based as well as analytical aspects of the project.
Ad (1) Arts-based techniques regarding improvisation and composition in jazz involve a balance of inherited and idiosyncratic techniques. Inherited strategies are derived from groundbreaking works of art in the field, which have been revealed in regular publications of the institute for jazz research and disseminated through lecturing activities within the core curriculum at the institute for jazz. New strategies involve personal approaches regarding the creation of identity, which are particularly encouraged regarding the creation of new works of art in special workshops as part of this project.
Ad (2) The nature of these new works as well as the process of their creation and their impact in performances will be discussed with the creators and audience according to the interrelation of musical elements and contextual settings. The analytical methods, which include formal/rhythmic/harmonic/melodic and timbral accounts have been developed and tested since the inception of the institute for jazz research through constant peer-reviewed activities in publications and conference presentations.
Ad (3) Similarly, the methodology regarding the examination of the historical background to this project and the contextual aspects of the new works has been developed to the current state-of-the-art in the field at the institute for jazz research.
Ad (4) Questionnaires and in-depth interviews will be used to inquire local and international jazz artists, jazz students, jazz promoters, policy makers, as well as the regular jazz audience in Graz regarding the following topics: perception of new works regarding the concepts of inheritance and identity; general perception of inheritance and identity regarding jazz in Graz; general perception of Graz as a ‘Jazzhauptstadt’, international reputation of Graz as a ‘Jazzhauptstadt’ (capital of jazz); commercial benefits of the use of the concept of ‘Jazzhauptstadt’; ramifications of this strategy for society, policy makers and the general society; ramifications of the performance of new works in the formation of identity; the identity of the ‘Jazzhauptstadt’ Graz within the pan-European setting.