eventgrafik-2014



IEM Graz: StiffNeck - Auralisation as a Tool in Electroacoustic Music Composition

Workshop for limited numer of participants

 

“StiffNeck” is an auralisation software for simulating spaces based on measured room impulse responses. The software includes an extensive library of measurements from MUMUTH Graz and its multi-channel, variable loudspeaker system. The workshop features “virtual on-site” composition using StiffNeck by taking up different perspectives on space by means of virtual acoustics. It further focusses on the adaptation and documentation of acousmatic music and the construction of superimposed, unreal spaces.


Auralisation based on measured room impulse responses is a particularly useful tool when loudspeakers are used as sound sources, as it is the case in electroacoustic music. Using (typically binaural) impulse responses for a set of loudspeakers in a hall and for each desired listening position, the composer can get a fairly realistic and detailed rendering of the listening situation in that hall. Especially when the composer has had prior listening experience with the hall measured, the binaural auralisation allows for performing large parts of the compositional process outside the hall – with headphones, but still virtually in-situ. This kind of “on-site composition” allows for approaching a particular loudspeaker setup without requiring permanent access to the hall. The simulation is not meant as an equal replacement, but as a means to provide a further perspective on the room's acoustic properties. Thus, it also welcomes a reflection on the mediating tools themselves.

 

In the workshop a particular auralisation tool, “StiffNeck”, will be presented and can be used by the participants. StiffNeck has been developed in the artistic research project “The Choreography of Sound” and includes measurements for various loudspeaker configurations realised in the Ligeti hall in MUMUTH, the concert hall of the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz. The MUMUTH has more than 100 loudspeakers permanently installed, 33 of which can be positioned using a motorised control (height, horizontal and vertical orientation). The speaker configurations are measured for several listening positions, allowing for displacing the listening position interactively. StiffNeck also includes 2D and 3D visualisation tools to display the loudspeaker configuration and the listening positions, which help keeping track of complex multichannel setups and add further visual perspectives on the space.

 

The workshop aims at introducing auralisation as a compositional tool, using the example of StiffNeck. As this principle of working can be applied to any hall and situation, the necessary measurements assumed, the hands-on experience gained by the workshop participants will be transferable. Participants who plan to compose or adapt a piece for the MUMUTH will be provided with all they need to use the StiffNeck for that purpose.

Tutors

Gerhard Eckel

Martin Rumori

 

A maximum of 12 participants who ideally bring their own laptop (Mac or Linux) and headphones (closed-back, supra-aural). For information concerning the installation of the software used in the workshop please send an email to:

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5 August, 10:00 – 12:30
7 August, 10:00 – 12:30
8 August, 10:00 – 12:30

Workshop for limited numer of participants

 

“StiffNeck” is an auralisation software for simulating spaces based on measured room impulse responses. The software includes an extensive library of measurements from MUMUTH Graz and its multi-channel, variable loudspeaker system. The workshop features “virtual on-site” composition using StiffNeck by taking up different perspectives on space by means of virtual acoustics. It further focusses on the adaptation and documentation of acousmatic music and the construction of superimposed, unreal spaces.