EVENT #8 Concentrated NIME
In this work, the categories of performance device, loudspeaker system and compositional structure are jumbled and merged: the members of the audience are invited to be a part of the piece, and find themselves holding in their hands the loudspeaker system itself, which they can interact with via physical and digital affordances. A population of 10 ‘sound balls’ is distributed amongst the performance space. Each ball contains a small WiFi-enabled computer, with loudspeaker and sensors (accelerometer and gyroscope). The balls can be ‘live coded’ from a host computer, running synchronised realtime generative audio software that incorporates the sensors’ activity into the sonic behaviour. They are fully portable and interactive, and are encased in generatively designed, digitally fabricated shells by architects reinhardt_jung.
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Two pianists improvise on augmented hybrid grand pianos, in a synergy between acoustic and virtual resonating bodies. Sound processing is controlled from keyboard alone, with no external controllers, presets or timeline mechanisms.
A “Tangible Score” is a tactile interface for musical expression that incorporates a score in its physical shape, surface structure or spatial configuration. Using sound as a continuous input signal, both synthesis and control are available simultaneously through direct manipulation on the engraved patterns of the physical score. Sound is generated through a polyphonic concatenative synthesis driven by a real- time analysis and classification of input signal spectra. Each of the scores is loaded with a specific sound corpus that defines its sonic identity. Thus, “Tangible Score” provides a implicit visual and haptic feedback in addition to its sonic core functionality, making it intuitive and learnable but as well suitable as an interface for musical improvisation and sonic exploration.
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The Threnoscope is an audiovisual compositional system focussing on a few key elements: drones, microtonality and spatial sound. The piece aims to remove linear time from the music by emphasising stasis or circularity. Through visual representations of harmonic relationships, tuning systems and drone states, and multichannel audio, the system affords specific compositional focus that encourages the performer to work with spatial sound and descriptions of harmonic spectra. The Threnoscope serves as a representational notation, visualising harmonic relationships between drones. The system has a strong capacity for microtonal composition by implementing support for the Huygens-Fokker Scala format, accompanying over 4000 microtonal scales and tunings.
In A State plays with models of emotion: the discrete model (angry, happy, sad, tender in this case) and the continuous model by Russell based on a two-dimensional arousal-valence plane. A pianist improvises, and the emotion perceived in the music by the computer is visualised in an abstract way using digitized drawings and Processing code. The computer’s analysis of emotions also informs electroacoustic responses. Detected emotional state of both the pianist and the electroacoustic agent are projected and in turn inspire the pianist’s decisions. Mediation by computer models of emotion forms an ironic core within this performance: flaws in the emotional detection system bring emotion models to the forefront of audience involvement with the work.