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
Research Fellow in Cultural Analytics

Fabian C. Moss is a Research Fellow in Cultural Analytics at University of Amsterdam (UvA). He was born in Cologne, Germany, and studied Mathematics and Educational Studies at University of Cologne, and Music Education (Major Piano) and Musicology at Hochschule für Musik und Tanz, Köln. He obtained is PhD in Digital Humanities from École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL). Working with large symbolic datasets of musical scores and harmonic annotations, he is primarily interested in Computational Music Analysis, Music Theory, Music Cognition, and their mutual relationship.