Hosting the First Annual Fresh Minds Festival

Fresh Minds Festival PosterSeptember 26, 2013, featuring four international guest artists and live spatialization by students in a 10.2 channel 3D surround sound system, using a multitouch interface.

The Fresh Minds Festival is a public performance of audiovisual artworks by professional artists, student-curated under the direction of a multi-disciplinary team of faculty. Continue reading

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Structure in the Dimension of Liveness and Mediation

Leonardo Music Journal, vol. 18. While technological developments can replace some aspects of live performance, they have also opened a new dimension of musical structure: that of liveness and mediation, which requires live performance in order to be meaningful. Liveness itself can be used and manipulated as a distinct musical element. The author describes these concepts at work in his compositions that explore mediatization as a device of intermedial imitative counterpoint and formal structure.

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Fostering a Culture of Creative Interdisciplinary Innovation at Texas A&M University

International Journal of Art, Culture and Design Technologies (IJACDT), vol. 2, no. 1. As a relatively young department in an aesthetically conservative, remote college town, the Department of Performance Studies at Texas A&M University is building a culture of innovation through strategic facility development, a focus on students sharing work through public performance, and a commitment to interdisciplinary collaboration. The authors have embraced the celebrated strengths of their university in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) by developing interdisciplinary experiences and inspiring facilities (through technology and curriculum grants). These experiences contribute to the university at large by demonstrating how technology can connect with the human element and how technology impacts human expression. The authors’ Music, Performance Studies, and Theatre Arts students benefit by joining the faculty in exploring the new and also rediscovering the traditional

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Fresh Minds Festival

Fresh-Minds-Festival-PosterTexas A&M University invites fixed media works of visual music or other non-narrative fine art animation, video, or film in which the sound/music and visuals play equally important roles in the work, for a presentation on the Texas A&M University campus called the Fresh Minds Festival. The event will be mass curated by hundreds of TAMU students learning the elements of visual and musical design with the goal of presenting a program of works that are engaging and rewarding to curious newcomer audiences. This is an event filling the gap between “for experts only” and “people’s choice” type events. Each year, several hundred students co-curate the festival. Each year’s evaluation cycle is launched with the screening of the previous year’s finalists.

A faculty panel will use the students’ evaluations of submitted works to shape a program. Creators of selected works are encouraged but not required to attend the event. Multiple entries will be accepted. There is no entry fee.

Due to the large number of students participating in the selection process, works will reviewed in stereo on student-owned equipment, delivered via internet links for evaluation. Works selected for the event will be presented in full quality in surround sound, spatialized live by TAMU students.

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Available for Intermedia Performance Workshops

Over the years, I’ve developed a model for composition interdisciplinary/intermedia performances and have used it to devise performances with my students, typically getting a dozen students involved in one performance. I can do this at your school too, adapting an existing composition to your students’ skills or working with them to create a completely new performance. I can also do extended intensive residencies in which students develop Continue reading

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Third Prize in Music/Architecture Competition

Research Embodied, a site-specific intermedia performance created for the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library with designer Autum Casey was selected as a finalist from 70 international submissions, performed on October 19, 2011, and awarded third prize in the Music in Architecture—Architecture in Music symposium in Austin, Texas.

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Research Embodied: site-specific intermedia performance

Co-created with designer Autum CaseyResearch Embodied is an intermedia performance designed for the Great Hall of the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library with musicians performing with amplified books and QWERTY keyboard, footsteps, and movement (in front of a camera-triggered synthesized carillon), along with two large video projections and five actors.

Acoustically, we highlight how the Great Hall amplifies presence in the space.  The reverberation preserves instants in time, mirroring the function of a library.  Visually, we merge the view of the archives with a glimpse of their contents.  Functionally, we scripted and made music form the activities of participants in the Great Hall and scholars in the stacks.  Conceptually, we call attention to the union and separation of the public and scholars and the challenges of moderated access to information.

Continue reading

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Third Prize in the Music in Architecture International Symposium

Research Embodied, a site-specific intermedia performance and installation created for the Great Hall of the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library and Museum (Austin, Texas) was awarded Third Prize in the Music in Architecture—Architecture in Music International Symposium It was one of five finalists chosen from 74 entries (6.8% acceptance rate), from among international and Ivy League competitors. And it was performed by our students!

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PerfTech Presents: InterMEDIA Performance 2011

PerfTech students presented intermedia performances in TAMU’s Fallout Theatre.

Professor Morris led his students in devising a performance titled Soccer Mom, which played on giallo horror film, using everyday experiences to generate a chilling musical score and sound effects. Students made sounds by preparing dinner (spaghetti and a cocktail for dad), using a power drill, and a Nintendo Wii Remote embedded in a soccer ball. Offstage performers controlled the processing of the video footage and chose pitches to be played each time our “boy” on stage hit the soccer ball. Other students contributed by preparing the vintage lo-fi looking projections.

Another notable performance was Black Hole for audio and video feedback. One student’s instrument was a microphone running through guitar effects pedals and a guitar amp, and the other student performed with a video camera focused on the projected image from its output, in addition to various light sources. The result was a surprisingly rich and organic performance.

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