Bertrand Denzler



An interview project by Bertrand Denzler and Jean-Luc Guionnet


We set out to talk with musicians who play or have played what is usually called improvised music or musical improvisation. We met with musicians from different generations and from various geographical and aesthetic backgrounds. The idea of improvisation, especially of musical improvisation, is burdened with a multitude of paradoxes. Our goal was to experience these in the field and to see what could be said about them in the heat of the discussion. We wanted to approach improvisation through its environment – almost in the mesological sense of the word: the habits and customs of a practice, as experienced by those who invent it on a daily basis.


Between 2003 and 2011, we have interviewed following musicians (in chronological order):

Thomas Charmetant, Pascal Battus, Patrick McGinley, Matt Davis, Phil Durrant, Ross Lambert, Seymour Wright, Rhodri Davies, Mark Wastell, Eddie Prévost, Kazushige Kinoshita, Taku Unami, Tim Goldie, Mattin, Angharad Davies, Morphogenesis (Adam Bohman, Clive Graham, Clive Hall, Michael Prime), Frédérick Galiay, Quentin Dubost, John Butcher, Ninh Lê Quan, Evan Parker, Axel Dörner, Phil Minton, Xavier Charles, Daunik Lazro, Amanda Stewart, Philip Samartzis, Marc Baron, Stéphane Rives, Radu Malfatti, Robin Hayward, Andrea Neumann, Clare Cooper, Diego Chamy, Klaus Filip, Yoshihide Otomo, Bill Dixon, Will Guthrie, Clayton Thomas, Jérôme Noetinger, Olivier Benoit, Frédéric Blondy, Loïc Blairon, Stevie Wishart, Seijiro Murayama, Edward Perraud, Sophie Agnel, Burkhard Beins, Christine Abdelnour, Jean-Sébastien Mariage, Pierre-Antoine Badaroux, Annette Krebs.


So far, this ongoing project has been the subject of following pubications:

«S’y entendre en discorde…» in «L’expérience de l’expérimentation», M. Saladin (editor), Les Presses du Réel (2015)

«Schématisons» in Revue & Corrigée #88 (2011)

«Out In The Field» in «Blocks of Consciousness and the Unbroken Continuum», B. Marley, M. Wastell (editors), Sound 323 (2006)