The Agency Approach to Phenomenal Experiences: The Case of the Creator- Witness Phenomenon in Musical Improvisation
Dr. Nadiya Slobodenyuk

The purpose of this paper is to introduce the sense of agency approach to explaining phenomenal experiences associated with musical performance. I argue for the usefulness of the agency approach on the basis of the analysis of creator-witness phenomenon—the twofold experience of being simultaneously in control and not in control reported by improvising performers. The agency approach is proposed to supplement the previously offered automaticity explanation of the phenomenon, and introduce a wider framework for explaining phenomenal experiences of expert improvisers and non-expert performers. The significance of the approach is further discussed in light of the development of the embodied learning teachings for music education and efficient instruction strategies in the context of the psychotherapeutic use of musical improvisation.

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