• Barbara Moran

    Barbara Moran, Senior Science Writer

    Barbara Moran is a science writer in Brookline, Mass. Profile

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There are 3 comments on The Cocktail Party Problem

  1. Funny thing, I have always felt that I was good at “cocktail chatter” and attributed it to theatre training and many years of teaching high schoolers and adults in busy rooms. Kind of the same idea… but musicians are way cooler!

  2. As someone who would meet the musician standards of the scientists in the study, I think that the laser-beam listening is learned. To be successful, we have to be able to listen intensely to one voice, but also broadly to the whole ensemble. I think many musicians would tell you that their listening ability is always improving.
    As it relates to the study, scientists may be able to see improvement in non-musicians by having them listen to Bach counterpoint, whether it’s 3 voice or 5 voice. If listeners are actively practicing identifying a single melody within a musical texture, that skill can be developed and transferred to listening to one voice in a crowd.

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