The purpose of this study was to explore whether listeners can use timing patterns to decode the intended emotional expression of musical performances. We gradually removed different acoustic cues (tempo, dynamics, timing, articulation) from piano performances rendered with various intended expressions (anger, sadness, happiness, fear) to see how such manipulations would affect a listener's ability to decode the emotional expression. The results show that (a) removing the timing patterns yielded a significant decrease in listeners' decoding accuracy, (b) timing patterns were by themselves capable of communicating some emotions with accuracy better than chance, and (c) timing patterns were less effective in communicating emotions than were tempo and dynamics. Implications for research on timing in performance are discussed.


Juslin, 1998a;
Juslin & Laukka, 1999).
(Cohen & Cohen, 1983).
(Cooksey, 1996).
Cohen's (1988)
Rubin's (1989)
Seoul, Korea, August 26-30, 1998.


Adachi, M., & Trehub, S. E. (1998). Children's expression of emotion in song. Psychology of Music, 26, 133-153.
Bengtsson, I., & Gabrielsson, A. (1983). Analysis and synthesis of musical rhythm. In J. Sundberg (Ed.), Studies of music performance (pp. 27-59). Stockholm, Sweden: Publica- tions issued by the Royal Swedish Academy of Music, No. 17.
Budd, M. (1985). Music and the emotions: The philosophical theories. London: Rout- ledge.
Clarke, E. F. (1988). Generative principles in music performance. In J. A. Sloboda (Ed.), Generative processes in music: The psychology of performance, improvisation, and com- position (pp. 1-26). Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Clarke, E. F. (1995). Expression in performance: Generativity, perception, and semiosis. In J. Rink (Ed.), The practice of performance (pp. 21-54). Cambridge; UK: Cambridge University Press.
Clarke, E. F. (1999). Rhythm and timing in music. In D. Deutsch (Ed.), The psychology of music (2nd ed., pp. 473-500). San Diego: Academic Press.
Cohen, J. ( 1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). New York: Academic Press.
Cohen, J., & Cohen, P. (1983). Applied multiple regression/ correlation analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
Cooksey, R. W. (1996). Judgment analysis: Theory, methods, and applications. New York: Academic Press.
Davies, S. (1994). Musical meaning and expression. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
Desain, P., & Honing, H. (1994). Does expressive timing in music performance scale pro- portionally with tempo? Psychological Research, 56, 285-292.
Dowling, W. I., & Harwood, D. L. (1986). Music cognition. New York: Academic Press.
Ekman, P. (Ed.). (1973). Darwin and facial expression. New York: Academic Press.
Ekman, P. (1992). An argument for basic emotions. Cognition and Emotion, 6, 169-200.
Frick, R. W. (1985). Communicating emotion: The role of prosodie features. Psychological Bulletin, 97, 412-429.
Gabrielsson, A. (1985). Interplay between analysis and synthesis in studies of music perfor- mance and music experience. Music Perception, 3, 59-86.
Gabrielsson, A. (1988). Timing in music performance and its relations to music experience. In J. A. Sloboda (Ed.), Generative processes in music. The psychology of performance, improvisation, and composition (pp. 27-51). Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Gabrielsson, A. (1995). Expressive intention and performance. In R. Steinberg (Ed.), Music and the mind machine (pp. 35-47). Heidelberg: Springer.
Gabrielsson, A. (1999). The performance of music. In D. Deutsch (Ed.), The psychology of music (2nd ed., pp. 501-602). San Diego: Academic Press.
Gabrielsson, A., & Juslin, P. N. (1996). Emotional expression in music performance: Be- tween the performer's intention and the listener's experience. Psychology of Music, 24, 68-91.
Gabrielsson, A., & Juslin, P. N. (in press). Expression in music. In R. J. Davidson, H. H. Goldsmith, & K. R. Scherer (Eds.), Handbook of affective sciences. New York: Oxford University Press
Gabrielsson, A., Juslin, P. N., & Lindström, E. (1994). Expressive intention governs music performance. In I. Deliège (Ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition (pp. 19-20). University of Liège, Belgium.
Gardner, H. (1993). Frames of mind: The theory of multiple intelligences (2nd ed.). Lon- don: Fontana Press.
Howell, D. C. (1992). Statistical methods for psychology (3rd ed.). Belmont, CA: Duxbury Press.
Hursch, C. J., Hammond, K. R., & Hursch, J. L. (1964). Some methodological consider- ations in multiple-cue probability studies. Psychological Review, 71, 42-60.
Juslin, P. N. (1997a). Emotional communication in music performance: A functionalist per- spective and some data. Music Perception, 14, 383-418.
Juslin, P. N. (1997b). Perceived emotional expression in synthesized performances of a short melody: Capturing the listener's judgment policy. Musicae Scientiae, 1, 225-256.
Juslin, P. N. (1997c). Can results from studies of perceived expression in musical perfor- mances be generalized across response formats? Psychomusicology, 16, 77-101.
Juslin, P. N. (1997d, November 22-24). Judgment analysis of emotional communication in music performance. Poster session presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Judgment & Decision Making, Philadelphia.
Juslin, P. N. (1998a). Cue utilization in communication of emotion in music performance: Relating performance to perception. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Juslin, P. N. (1998b). A functionalist perspective on emotional communication in music performance. Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Social Sciences 78. Uppsala, Sweden: Uppsala University Library.
Juslin, P. N. (1999). Communication of emotion in vocal expression and music perfor- mance: Different channels, same codei Manuscript submitted for publication.
Juslin, P. N. (in press). A Brunswikian approach to emotional communication in music performance. In K. R. Hammond, & T. R. Stewart (Eds.), The essential Brunswik: Be- ginnings, explications, applications. New York: Oxford University Press.
Juslin, P. N., & Laukka, P. (1999). Improving emotional communication in music perfor- mance through cognitive feedback. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Juslin, P. N., Friberg, A., & Bresin, R. (1999, August 14-17). Towards a computational model of performance expression: The GERM model Paper presented at the meeting of the Society for Music Perception and Cognition, Evanston, IL
Kendall, R. A., & Carterette, E. C. (1990). The communication of musical expression. Music Perception, 8, 129-164.
Krumhansl, C. L. (1997). An exploratory study of musical emotions and psychophysiology. Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology, 51, 336-352.
Lochhead, J. (1996), The expressivity of tempo and timing in musical performance. In J. T. Fraser & M. P. Soulsby (Eds.), Dimensions of time and life (pp. 147-160). Madison, CT: International Universities Press.
Meyer, L. B. (1956). Emotion and meaning in music. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Oatley, K. (1992). Best laid schemes: The psychology of emotions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Palmer, C. (1989). Mapping musical thought to musical performance, Journal of Experi- mental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 15, 331-346
Palmer, C. (1997). Music performance. Annual Review of Psychology, 48, 115-138.
Persson, R. S. (1995). Musical reality: Exploring the subjective world of performers. In R. Monelle, & C. T. Gray (Eds.), Song and signification: Studies in music semiotics (pp. 58- 63). Edinburgh, UK: University of Edinburgh, Faculty of Music.
Persson, R. S., Pratt, G., & Robson, C. (1992). Motivational and influential components of musical performance: A qualitative analysis. European Journal for High Ability, 3, 206- 217.
Pittam, J., & Scherer, K. R. (1993). Vocal expression and communication of emotion. In M. Lewis, & J. M. Haviland (Eds.), Handbook of emotions (pp. 185-197). New York: Guildford Press.
Plutchik, R. (1994). The psychology and biology of emotion. New York: Harper-Collins College Publishers.
Repp, B. H. (1998a). A microcosm of musical expression I: Quantitative analysis of pia- nists' timing in the initial measures of Chopin's Etude in E major. Journal of the Acous- tical Society of America, 102, 1085-1099.
Repp, B. H. (1998b). Individual differences in shaping a musical phrase: The opening of Chopin's Etude in E Major. In S. W. Yi (Ed.), Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition 1998 (pp. 27-34). College of Music, Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea.
Rosenthal, R., & Rubin, D. B. (1989). Effect size estimation for one-sample multiple-choice- type data: Design, analysis, and meta-analysis. Psychological Bulletin, 106, 332-337.
Shaffer, L. H. (1992). How to interpret music. In M. R. Jones, & S. Holleran (Eds.), Cogni- tive bases of musical communication (pp. 263-278). Washington: American Psychologi- cal Association.
Sloboda, J. A. (1994). Music performance: Expression and the development of excellence. In R. Aiello, & J. A. Sloboda (Eds.), Musical perceptions (pp. 152-169). Oxford: Ox- ford University Press.
Sloboda, J. A. (1998). Emotional peaks in music: How composers and performers produce them, how listeners are affected by them. Paper presented at the Geneva Emotion Week, Geneva, Switzerland, May 1998.
Sloboda, J. A., & Juslin, P. N. (in press). Psychological perspectives on music and emotion. In P. N. Juslin, & J. A. Sloboda (Eds.), Music and emotion: Theory and research. Ox- ford: Oxford University Press.
Stewart, T. R. (1988). Judgment analysis: Procedures. In B. Brehmer, & C. R. B. Joyce (Eds.), Human judgment: The SJTview (pp. 41-74). Amsterdam: North-Holland Elsevier.
Storm, C., & Storm, T. (1987). A taxonomic study of the vocabulary of emotions. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 53, 805-816
Sundberg, J., Iwarsson, J., & Hagegård, H. (1995). A singer's expression of emotions in sung performance. In O. Fujimura, & M. Hirano (Eds.), Vocal fold physiology: Voice quality control (pp. 217-229). San Diego: Singular Press.
Terhardt, E. (1995). Music perception in the auditory hierarchy. In R. Steinberg (Ed.), Mu- sic and the mind machine, (pp. 81-87). Heidelberg: Springer.
Todd, N. (1989). A computational model of rubato. Contemporary Music Review, 3, 69- 88.
This content is only available via PDF.