Expression of emotion in music performance is a form of nonverbal communication to which people may be differentially receptive. The recently developed Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test assesses individual differences in the ability to identify, understand, reason with, and manage emotions using hypothetical scenarios that are conveyed pictorially or in writing. The test currently does not include musical or spoken items. We asked 24 undergraduates to complete both that test and a listening test in which they tried to identify the intended emotions in performances of classical piano music. Emotional intelligence and emotion recognition in the music task were significantly correlated (r = .54), which suggests that identification of emotion in music performance draws on some of the same sensibilities that make up everyday emotional intelligence.

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