Tools of the trade: click-tracks and conductors

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Thomas R. Moore


This essay will examine the manner in which composers and artistic directors have used conductors and click-tracks within the context of new music ensembles performing integrative concerts. The analyses and examples provided will rely for the most part on material gathered during in-depth interviews that I conducted with artistic directors, composers, conductors, and musicians, all of whom are professionally active in the new music field in Europe (and beyond). I will examine the application of both click-tracks and conductors and demonstrate that their implementation represents an active choice made by either the composer and/or artistic directors. Both click-tracks and conductors are viewed by the interviewees as potential tools with somewhat overlapping possibilities and capacities and their presence is no secondary phenomenon of the music. They become instead a means for the above actors to meet their objectives, be they artistic, pragmatic, technical, or otherwise.


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Moore, T. R. (2020). Tools of the trade: click-tracks and conductors. Interdisciplinary Studies in Musicology, (20), 9-20.
Biogram autora

Thomas R. Moore, University of Antwerp and Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp (ARIA)

Thomas R. Moore – graduated from Indiana University in 2002 before relocating to Europe. There he attended the Utrecht School of the Arts (The Netherlands), gaining his second Bachelor of Music degree (2003) in trombone performance before earning his Master’s degree (2006) from the Royal Conservatoire in Antwerp ( (Belgium). Thomas now devotes his time to conducting and playing trombone in diverse countries and a variety of genres. He is conductor and trombonist with Nadar Ensemble, a member of the orchestra at Theater des Westens, in Berlin, and a regular guest with ChampdAction, Spectra Ensemble and Ictus Ensemble. As a soloist, he has premiered works at the several international festivals including the ISCM World Music Days, Arte No Tempo, Darmstadt New Music Summer Course, Porto Franko, //hcmf, ZXZW, Time of Music and Images Sonores. Moore has also regularly conducted the Orchestra of the Royal Dutch Air Force, was the assistant musical director at Les Misèrables and musical director at the hit Dutch musical, Soldaat van Oranje. In 2018, Thomas begun a doctorate at the University and Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp in an attempt to “redefine the role of the conductor in new music”, researching the artistic and socioeconomic motivations behind the utilization of conductors. For more information, please visit


  1. Beil, M. (10 October 2019). Interview.
  2. Khubeev, A. (27 March 2019). Interview.
  3. Löser, C. (15 January 2020). Interview.
  4. Maierhof, M. (17 January 2020). Interview.
  5. Matthynssens, P. (21 January 2020). Interview.
  6. Moore, T. R. (2019). Conducting Silence: The use of conducted and measured silences in Michael Maierhof’s Zonen 6 for guitar orchestra (2007–2008, 2018). FORUM+ Online.
  7. Moore, T. R. (2021). Instrumentalized Conductor, Tempo, 297 (forthcoming).
  8. Octors, G.-E. (15 October 2019). Interview.
  9. Prins, S. (23 August and 10 November 2019). Interview.
  10. Rathé, F. (21 January 2020). Interview.
  11. Steen-Andersen, S. (10 November 2019). Interview.