Monthly Archives: December 2013

HyperConstellation for Perth

As part of our Symphony for Perth project, we have invited young people from throughout the Greater Perth area to create original compositions using our Hyperscore software,

Hyperscore composition software

Hyperscore composition software

expressing some aspect of life – and sound – in Perth. Students from elementary through high school, and from the CBD to Narrogin, worked on their pieces from October through mid-December (brought together by Jemma Gurney, the amazing Education Coordinator at the Perth Festival). I was lucky enough to visit eight different schools when I was in Perth this fall, and got to hear all this music as it was developing. Great experience! Final compositions were sent to me a couple of weeks ago, and I have been listening to them ever since to decide how to incorporate as many of these brilliant, vivid musical visions as possible into the final Symphony.

Hyperscore workshop at Perth Modern School

Hyperscore workshop at Perth Modern School

Hyperscore composers at  Churchlands Primary School

Hyperscore composers at Churchlands Primary School

Rachael Dease, composer-collaborator with Perth International Arts Festival

Rachael Dease, composer-collaborator with Perth International Arts Festival

Hard at work on Hyperscore pieces at Inglewood Primary School

Hard at work on Hyperscore pieces at Inglewood Primary School

Now you can help me think about this as well. The new HyperConstellation app will allow you to experiment with many fragments from the Perth Hyperscore compositions, and to give me suggestions about how they might fit together. Even better, the original computer versions of some of these Hyperscore pieces were transcribed for orchestra by Perth composer Rachael Dease, and recorded just last week by the West Australian Youth Orchestra, conducted by Chris Van Tuinen (who is also head of classical music programming at the Perth Festival).

PYO2

WA Youth Orchestra, conducted by Chris Van Tuinen, recording selected Perth Hyperscore pieces

Back at the MIT Media Lab where I work, we took these recordings, selected our favorite parts, and fed them into Akito Van Troyer’s Constellation software which organized them into star-map-type patterns that you can explore.

So check out the brand new HyperConstellation app and listen to all these amazing musical motives. By connecting the dots, you can make your own compositions based on these Hyperscore pieces. Check out our recent video for a refresher on how to use Constellation, and make sure to upload your own versions of this material, edit and morph versions left by others, and post your comments on the website or send thoughts and ideas to me directly at perth@media.mit.edu.

I think you’ll be as impressed as I am at the ingenuity, sensitivity and – yes – sense of humor of Perth’s young people as demonstrated in these pieces, and I really look forward to hearing how you shape and mash-up this material yourselves. Don’t forget to come hear the final Symphony for Perth on March 1, 2014!!

Happy Holidays…..and Happy Hyperscore!!!!

Tod

Explore the sounds of Perth with CONSTELLATION web app!

TodWithKangaroo After a whirlwind trip to Perth in October/November when I immersed myself in the sights and sounds of the city, I am excited to share a unique collaborative activity where you will be able to contribute to the creative process of Between the Desert and the Deep Blue Sea: A Symphony for Perth. Since the launch of our project, we have received some amazing sounds that represent the city to you, and I have had the opportunity to record some of my own along with the help of my colleagues at the Perth International Arts Festival. Since my return to the MIT Media Lab, my team and I have been hard at work processing all of this recorded material in order to share it with you in a special web app called CONSTELLATION, which has been enhanced especially for our symphony. From within the CONSTELLATION app, you can explore many of the Perth sounds that have been collected so far and then reshape, modify, morph, and personalize them to create a sonic version of the city and its surroundings that you like best. It has a truly fun – and, honestly, somewhat addictive – interface that lets you move the mouse over clouds of star-like dots to create “constellations” of beautiful sounds. These constellations are recorded, can be played back, and become your personal musical “score” made from this material. Using the Constellation app, you’ll find five very different “galaxies” of sound – Dry, Wet, City, Improv and Mix – in which to create your sonic trajectories.  Each category of sounds is quite distinct and was shaped by my recent experiences in Perth: Dry Dry: Sounds from the hills, wheat country, mines, flies, crows…..all the good, the bad and the ugly from “dry Perth.” Wet Wet: Ocean sounds from up and down the coast, plus rivers, fountains, and other lovely, fluid strains. City City: A mixture as diverse as Perth itself (including some snippets from Fremantle Market). Improv Improv: Snippets taken from improv sessions with local Perth musicians, from cello to clarinet, laptop to electric guitar, piano to didgeridoo, and more. Mix Mix: A little bit of everything, all in one “constellation.” Please experiment with these different sounds and settings as much as you want. Everything that you create with the Constellation app will be considered for use in many sections of the piece, and I’ll be sure to let you know how and where it gets used over the coming weeks. You can also play with the “constellations” that other people have created by visiting the Score Gallery. And don’t forget to keep sending in your own audio recordings of your favorite sounds of Perth via our special SoundCloud account!  If you can send me sounds by January 10, 2014, it will be more likely that I will be able to include them in the symphony. I look forward to continuing our collaboration towards the premiere of Between the Desert and the Deep Blue Sea: A Symphony for Perth as the finale to the Perth International Arts Festival on March 1, 2014. Tod (from far-away and very cold, snowy Boston!)