Faculty of Music
This project—what we have termed a collaborative autoethnographic mapping project—grew out of conversations between two researchers who also work as choral conductors and teachers in community contexts. We found ourselves constantly struggling with the stubborn fact that we, as community musicians, engage in the very practices that we, as academics, critique. As we considered our roles as musicians and academics, we quickly realized that who we are is deeply entwined with where we are and who we are with. While we initially considered only the relationship between our professional roles as academics and musicians, we also began to realize that our other roles, such as mother, daughter, friend, citizen, were implicated in our professional identities, making a mess of the very idea that we could resolve the tensions between the many different aspects of our lives.
Out of those initial conversations, we launched a very personal research project that explored these tensions in ourselves and in relation to each other, not so much to sort out the tensions as to understand how place and social relationships shape who we think we are in any given moment. This video, with its “do-it-yourself” aesthetic, is the final iteration of a project that has explored the irresolvable tensions inherent in the messy, situated lived experience of two community music educators, traced through the physical and imagined journeys we navigate every day, which we have here conceptualized as desire lines, or the unmarked routes traversed between planned pathways.
Galway, K. and Yerichuk, D. (2016). Making a Mess of Everything: Excursions Through Communities, Musics, Academics, Longing, and Belonging. Liminalities: A Journal of Performance Studies 12(1).