On Violence

Research output: Non-textual formComposition


On Vio­lence is a com­po­si­tion that com­bines gen­er­a­tive music, impro­vi­sa­tion, algo­rith­mic com­po­si­tion, non-standard forms of nota­tion and real-time scor­ing, machine lis­ten­ing, real-time data and sound analysis/processing, ges­ture track­ing and com­puter net­work­ing. The pianist reads from a score dis­played on a lap­top screen, which com­bines con­ven­tional nota­tion with real-time scor­ing. The per­former also wears head­phones to receive audio trig­gers and cues that con­sti­tute the aural ele­ment of the score. For this com­po­si­tion I devel­oped new soft­ware libraries includ­ing a com­puter pro­gramme for real-time scor­ing writ­ten in the Super­Col­lider pro­gram­ming lan­guage. The pianist inter­acts with the score through two Midi ped­als that are used to ‘turn pages’, dis­play graphic nota­tion, give writ­ten direc­tions to the per­former and acti­vate score ani­ma­tions. Dur­ing the per­for­mance, the score grad­u­ally changes from con­ven­tional nota­tion to more exper­i­men­tal nota­tions. The real-time scor­ing ele­ments use a com­bi­na­tion of chance, gen­er­a­tive and spec­tral meth­ods to gen­er­ate visual and aural mate­r­ial that changes and adapts for each per­for­mance. The pianist is asked to fol­low a real-time score that has both fixed and unfixed indi­ca­tions, some of them involv­ing spon­ta­neous reac­tion and improvisation.
This per­for­mance strat­egy there­fore tests the pianist’s abil­ity to react to visual and aural cues spon­ta­neously and to change swiftly from dif­fer­ent modes of per­for­mance (stan­dard nota­tion, graphic ani­ma­tions, free impro­vi­sa­tion, etc.). The live-electronics serve as a ‘vir­tual orches­tra’ and inter­act with the pianist through machine lis­ten­ing tech­nolo­gies, sen­sors, and by send­ing mes­sages across a com­puter network.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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