Andrew Raffo Dewar, 2016. "Mediating the Improvising Body: Art Tatum’s Postmortem Performance in a Posthuman World", Negotiated Moments: Improvisation, Sound, and Subjectivity, Gillian Siddall, Ellen Waterman
Download citation file:
In September 2007, jazz pianist Art Tatum “performed” in front of a live audience, despite his death in 1956. This 2007 re-performance was realized using technology invented by Zenph Innovations that analyzes recordings to separate performances from their recorded media. Zenph then reanimates the “data” with a Disklavier Pro digital piano. In another twist, classical pianist Steven Mayer has transcribed, memorized, and performed a panoply of Tatum works for the past two decades. What role does the body play in these performances? What does its absence, in different forms for each case, tell us about what audiences listen to? What is the ontological state of the reanimated improviser? This chapter explores the implications and imbrications present in these two approaches to presenting the necrotic improvising body in the twenty-first century.