Art History: Redefining diegetic film music through the music-image
Where is the music coming from? Redefining diegetic film music through the music-image
Presenter: Will Jeffery
A common mode of analysis in Film Music Studies is to locate ‘where’ the film music is coming from. However, this sidelines an analysis of what music does to film experience. This paper explores whether the location of film music generates a certain audio-visual image of experience. The music-image is a new way of thinking about film music, analysing a whole image with no fixed meaning or communication, bridging the methodologies of musicology and film studies to do so. The music-image is not interested in ‘where’ film music is, it is interested in whether music’s location generates certain audio-visual meaning. Diegetic film music, music seemingly located within the film world, emits out of the same cinema speakers as other film music, still participating in image construction. This paper will redefine diegetic film music using a wide range of film examples through the discussion of visible and invisible source music, and concluding with the sourceless musical sources of the film musical.
Will Jeffery is a PhD student in Film Studies at The University of Sydney, currently researching a new method for analysing film music, titled ‘The Music-Image’. As well as film music, Jeffery is interested in a wide range of film-related topics including: Hollywood, European, and early Soviet cinema, the films of Ingmar Bergman, Dziga Vertov and Steven Spielberg, and the evolution of visual effects.