Meanings & Co. pp 141-161 | Cite as

Musical Performer’s Corporeal Identity and Its Communicative Functions

  • Lina Navickaitė-MartinelliEmail author
Part of the Numanities - Arts and Humanities in Progress book series (NAHP, volume 6)


The present article attempts to discuss several aspects of the corporeal identity of an art music performer, pianist more specifically, as significant carriers of the meanings of the performance itself. The richness of potential significations that a musical performance is capable to communicate is emphasized here, and for that purpose three semiotic models are employed that can contribute to the investigation of corporeal semiosis within the phenomenon of musical performance. Firstly, elements of the inner self and the outward identity, individual and collective subjectivities of the performer’s corporeality are outlined within the framework of the semiotic square of performer’s subjectivity (after Greimas and Tarasti). In addition, the author’s contribution to the already-existing discussion on performer’s corporeal identity and communication combines two other celebrated semiotic models: the Peircean icon-index-symbol classification of sign relations, and the model on the functions of language formulated by the Russian linguist Roman Jakobson. Having explained in general terms how these particular theories by Peirce and Jakobson work within the field of performers’ corporeality, the suggestion is made to combine the two, for the purposes of encompassing the topic into a single model thus encapsulating different forms of analysis of performers’ corporeality.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Lithuanian Academy of Music and TheatreVilniusLithuania

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