Measurements in this study show that the different pieces that were selected to express different emotional characteristics also induced corresponding emotional effects in listeners. Accordingly, participants experienced feelings of peacefulness, happiness, fear, or sadness. Even though the latter two feelings would normally be associated with unpleasant experiences, when experienced in the context of music, there were reported to be rather pleasant. This was supported by the physiological measurements in this study: the music had a calming and relaxing physiological effect on everyone, and the peaceful and happy songs increased the heart rate of the participant. We therefore conclude that listening to music like the selected songs might be understood as a means of experiencing contrasting positive and negative emotions in a safe environment. Taking time off to listen to music has an important function in managing to cope with emotional challenges we experience.
The YMPG was contacted to conduct this research due to the focus on research regarding emotional responses to music, and the ability to measure physiological effects with their audience response system (for more information on this equipment follow this link https://www.mstrcyork.org/resources/audience-response-system/).
YMPG is going to continue its research affords to understand how and why listeners respond emotionally to music.
Please follow this link in order to read our associated research report: https://pure.york.ac.uk/portal/en/projects/in-the-emotional-roller-coaster-how-music-induces-positive-and-negative-pleasurable-states(392d512f-4415-4570-9f54-a23f04c74ba2).html