Há nos EUA uma nova organização internacional vocacionada para apoiar todas as formas de música improvisada: a International Society for Improvised Music (ISIM). Pretende funcionar como rede entre músicos professores, estudantes, ouvintes, críticos e demais pessoas de algum modo interessadas no fenómeno, promovendo actividades no domínio do ensino, da investigação e da organização de concertos e outros eventos públicos.
ISIM arrives at a time when the unprecedented diversity of the musical world calls for a heightened understanding of the improvisatory core to musical creativity. The heading “improvised music” has emerged as an overarching label that describes the increasingly difficult-to-categorize musical expressions of today’s diverse culture. ISIM will cultivate awareness of improvised music through performance, education, research, and cross-disciplinary applications of improvisation. According to ISIM Founder and President Ed Sarath, “We have entered an extraordinarily exciting time in the history of music, when musicians have access to an unprecedented expanse of influences and creative strategies. Improvisation in one form or another is central to this global musical synthesis, and may even suggest applications to fields as diverse as business, education, science, communications, and sports”.
The diverse backgrounds of the ISIM Board of Directors and ISIM Advisory Council highlight the broad spectrum of the organization’s goals. Internationally notable artists such as Geri Allen, Oliver Lake, Pauline Oliveros, Jane Ira Bloom, Rufus Reid, Dee Spencer, Bob Hurst, Archie Shepp, and Evan Parker are represented, alongside highly regarded proponents of disparate cultural musics of India, Latin America, and elsewhere—including Rui Carvalho, Ganesh
Komar, John Santos, Sam Shalabi, Wojciech Konikiewicz, and Karaikudi Subramanian. In education the ISIM Advisory Council includes internationally acclaimed scholars David Elliott and Bennett Reimer. The ISIM Board of Directors consists of Ed Sarath, Maud Hickey, Betty Anne Younker, Mitchell Gordon, Michael Nickens, and Sarah Weaver.
ISIM will promote performance opportunities for established and aspiring artists through concerts, festivals, recordings, professional chapters, and other activities. ISIM will promote education by making available new pedagogical resources for the development of trans-stylistic improvising skills, advocating broader improvisatory training in academic music curricula, and establishing student chapters at member institutions. ISIM will promote research through forums such as discussion groups, conferences, and the ISIM journal. ISIM’s work in illuminating improvisation as a cross-disciplinary model for creativity will build on events such as Harvard Law and Business School’s “Improvisation and Negotiation” conference, which united colleagues in economics, social sciences, business, law, education and the arts to explore the improvisatory core of creativity across fields.
Through its range of activities, ISIM will be a network that unifies the musical community, and by extension seeks to make contributions in broader professional circles, and society at large.