Totoli's Art of Lelegesan: Analyzing Sociocultural Context and Musical Content


We present the first musicological analysis of a Lelegesan performance, a form of musical expression of the Totoli people in Central Sulawesi. Our preliminary study of this participatory musical practice of an endangered language community describes the overall form of the Lelegesan, consisting of two-part stanzas with improvised lyrics but relatively stable melodic patterns. We report characteristics of a performance’s frequency spectrum by drawing on computational methods, enabling us to approximate the underlying musical scale. Our analyses show that different phrase types are clearly distinguishable in terms of their frequency content, and that final tones of opening and closing phrases are generally about a major third apart.

Jun 16, 2022 2:37 PM — 2:37 PM
10th International Workshop on Folk Music Analysis 2022 (FMA2022)
University of Sheffield
Fabian C. Moss
Fabian C. Moss
Assistant Professor for Digital Music Philology and Music Theory

Fabian C. Moss is an assistant professor for Digital Music Philology and Music Theory at Julius-Maximilians University Würzburg (JMU), Germany.