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Title: Portfolio of original compositions : dynamic audio composition via space and motion in virtual and augmented environments
Author: Pecino Rodriguez, Jose Ignacio
ISNI:       0000 0004 5364 060X
Awarding Body: University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2015
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Electroacoustic music is often regarded as not being sufficiently accessible to the general public because of its sound-based abstract quality and the complexity of its language. Live electronic music introduces the figure of the performer as a gestural bodily agent that re-enables our multimodal perception of sound and seems to alleviate the accessibility dilemma. However, live electronic music generally lacks the level of detail found in studio-based fixed media works, and it can hardly be transferred outside the concert hall situation (e.g. as a video recording) without losing most of its fresh, dynamic and unpredictable nature. Recent developments in 3D simulation environments and game audio technologies suggest that alternative approaches to music composition and distribution are possible, presenting an opportunity to address some of these issues. In particular, this Portfolio of Compositions proposes the use of real and virtual space as a new medium for the creation and organisation of sound events via computer-simulated audio-sources. In such a context, the role of the performer is sometimes assumed by the listener itself, through the operation of an interactive-adaptive system, or it is otherwise replaced by a set of automated but flexible procedures. Although all of these works are sonic centric in nature, they often present a visual component that reinforces the multimodal perception of meaningful musical structures, either as real space locations for sonic navigation (locative audio), or live visualisations of physically-informed gestural agents in 3D virtual environments. Consequently, this thesis draws on general game-audio concepts and terminology, such as procedural sound, non-linearity, and generative music; but it also embraces game development tools (game engines) as a new methodological and technological approach to electroacoustic music composition. In such context, space and the real-time generation, control, and manipulation of assets combine to play an important role in broadening the routes of musical expression and the accessibility of the musical language. The portfolio consists of six original compositions. Three of these works–Swirls, Alice - Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady, and Alcazabilla–are interactive in nature and they required the creation of custom software solutions (e.g. SonicMaps) in order to deal with open-form musical structures. The last three pieces–Singularity, Apollonian Gasket, and Boids–are based on fractal or emergent behaviour models and algorithms, and they propose a non-interactive linear organisation of sound materials via real-time manipulation of non-conventional 3D virtual instruments. These original instrumental models exhibit strong spatial and kinematic qualities with an abstract and minimal visual representation, resulting in an extremely efficient way to build spatialisation patterns, texture, and musical gesture, while preserving the sonic-centric essence of the pieces.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Electroacoustic Music Composition ; Dynamic Audio ; Procedural ; Interactive ; Locative Audio ; Virtual Space ; Augmented Space ; Game Engine ; Unity ; Cellular Automata ; Recursion ; Emergence ; Boids ; Flocking behaviour ; SuperCollider ; OSC ; Multimodal