FRONT | Eastern Rebellion

This exposition contains documentation regarding Espen Aalberg’s artistic research project “Eastern Rebellion – with gamelan as inspiration for new musical expressions.” The research was funded through The Department of Music of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, as part of the Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowship Program (PKU) from 2015–2020.


Website structure and research results


The Eastern Rebellion research project has resulted in the following.


  • This website, which informs about: 

o   The project’s background and aims (Part 1)

o   The work behind the four artistic products (Part 2)

o   Reflections, ethical concerns, and future developments (Part 3)

o   The artistic products


  • The four artistic products, which are presented and discussed on this website. These works were initiated and conducted by me as an artist and researcher on this project. My roles in each of the four products are as follows:

o   The Bali Tapes - Composer, musician, producer, and recording and sound engineer

o   Mantra - Soloist 

o   Own Compositions: for Vibraphone & Marimba and for Gamelan  - Composer, musician 

o   Espen Aalberg / En En En - Composer, musician, and recording and sound engineer


The reflections in Part 1 and Part 3 are structured as interviews, with “questions” and “answers.” In these interviews, I am both the interviewer and the interviewee, and the questions are formed based on the project’s purposes and the choices made and dilemmas addressed during its processes, as well as on questions from supervisors and the artistic research community that I collaborated with. These questions concern artistic aspects as well as issues related to theoretical, methodological, and ethical aspects.


Reference system

  • For text references (books, webpages, and articles), I used the American Psychological Association (APA) (7th edition) reference style, and the references are listed on a References page. 
  • For music and video quotes/examples, the information regarding composition, performers, and recording (if available) is included in each example. The APA (7th edition) reference style can be used when referring to recordings/videos, but this presupposes information regarding the composer, performer, publisher, and year. Because little of this information is available for several of the traditional music examples I refer to, the APA (7th edition) style is not well suited to these examples.


The use of music made by others as quotes

The Norwegian organization DelRett, a guidance service on copyright and teaching, in collaboration with Diku and the Directorate of Education, says the following regarding the use of music as quotes.


A quote is the use of another´s work to illustrate/substantiate/express something one wants to express oneself. Section 29 of the Copyright Act states that a citation can be made only ‘to the extent that the purpose requires.’ This constitutes a quantitative limitation: One cannot quote more than is necessary to illustrate, substantiate, or express what one wants to express oneself. (My translation)

However, DelRett also point to limitations regarding use of music and film quotes in education and scientific presentations. DetRell concludes:


A work is usually quoted when this work concerns the teaching or elaborate the topic. The author/creator of the quoted work is entitled to be named and if possible, the title of the cited work must also be stated. (My translation) Teaching is equated to scientific presentations.


I have used this formulations as guidance concerning my use of quotes from recorded music made by others. I have attempted to do this in a manner consistent with DelRett’s guidance and without taking the music examples selected out of their contexts, both Western and non-Western.

Supervisors and research community

Thanks to my great supervisors on this project, Carl Haakon Waadeland, professor emeritus at NTNU, and Henrik Frisk, professor at Royal College of Music in Stockholm. Thanks also to all partners in the various artistic projects, including Trondheim Sinfonietta, Ellen Lindquist, Lars Sitter, Jonas Kullhammar, Torbjørn Zetterberg, Susanna Santos, Michael Duch, Eirik Hegdal, Tor Haugerud, Daniel Formo, and Matilda Rolfsson, to my research communities in PKU, Department of music/NTNU, and MiUMusikklærerutdanning i utvikling [music pedagogy in development]research network, and also to Elin Angelo for reading and commenting on parts of the text.


This exposition contains the documentation of Espen Aalberg´s artistic research project “Eastern Rebellion - with gamelan as inspiration for new musical expressions".  The research was funded through The Department of Music, at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, as a part of the Norwegian Artistic Research Fellowship Programme (PKU) from 2015 - 2020.