Music Structure and Emotional Response: Some Empirical Findings
Eighty-three music listeners completed a questionnaire in which thev provided information about the occurrence of a range of physical reactions while listening to music. Shivers down the spine, laughter, tears and lump in the throat were reported by over 80(% of respondents. Respondents were asked to locate specific musical passages that reliably evoked such responses. Structural analysis of these passages showed that tears were most reliablN evoked by passages containing sequences and appogiaturas, while shivers were most reliably evoked by passages containing new or unexpected harmonies. The data generally support theoretical approaches to elmotion based on confirmations and violations of expectancv.