Today I have attended a conference about Creativity and Creative Industries in Challenging Times at the NHTV University of Applied Sciences Breda and one of the keynote speakers has elaborated on the topic of ‘creativity in postnormal times’.
I will not go much into detail but what has been stuck in my mind was his example of Jazz music being an engine for creativity. It was mentioned that we need to become aware of the creativity that already lies within us and that we have lost the ability of improvisation due to educational systems that, frankly, do not leave much floor for creativity and adaptability. And so the example of Jazz musicians came up and I was inspired by this example and have been thinking about this topic the whole day.
When I hear the word Jazz, I immediately think of a setting in a smoky nightclub and of saxophones and skillful drummers. Jazz musicians are known for their talent to improvise – I am thinking of jam sessions here and the way they create new songs without the limitation of sheet music. I always thought that Jazz is inspiring (and also kind of throws you back in time and lets you indulge in nostalgia and melancholia) and I was always impressed by the improvisation skills of the musicians. Connecting this talent to creativity and innovation, Jazz musicians have always sort of driven themselves to find new ways to play their instruments in order to create unique sounds and to distinguish themselves from other musicians. It is kind of a ‘hands-on’ thing because a Jazz musician (actually musicians from all genres) needs to be able to immediately translate an idea into practice, a new sound. And this has always fascinated me, the ability to improvise and be aware of it.
So I was thinking that if we all had the mindset of a Jazz musician, would there be more creativity and innovation? Is Jazz music the key to creativity and innovation? Should we all become Jazz musicians?
Let me know what you think!
Recommended links on the topic of ‘creativity in postnormal times’: