Music Science and Technology Research Cluster Launch

The launch of the University of York Music Science and Technology Research Cluster took place on Friday the 25th of November 2016 in the Rymer Auditorium at the Department of Music at the University of York. The 50 odd guests were treated to an evening of introductory talks about the cluster and current topics within each group.

Prof. Ambrose Field gave an opening account of how it is no longer useful or correct to view the Arts and Sciences as separate or competing activities, but instead, he suggested they should embrace each other due to the symbiotic enhancement each can afford the other. Dr. Federico Reuben (director of the MSTRC) then gave an introduction to the cluster, including its publishing goals and some of the facilities available to people with an interest in conducting research in this field.

The director of each of the three sub-groups which make up the mstrc then introduced the current members of their respective groups and current research projects. First, Dr. Hauke Egermann discussed the York Music Psychology Group (YMPG) and what music psychology can involve using a basic and summative model. Further information on current YMPG projects can be found by following this link.

Next, Dr. Federico Reuben, director of Technologies for Musical Creativity Group (TMCG), introduced his work on distributed network performance and the Online Orchestra project, an AHRC-funded project which culminated in July 2015 with a performance involving musicians around Cornwall (Truro Cathedral, Isles of Scilly, Falmouth University, and the Lizard Peninsula) performing three new works together live online. The ongoing work on this project will develop a web-based application for distributed network performance based on the findings of the first phase of the project. It will address key issues related to network performance including novel approaches to handling latency, network architecture, echo management, and network access. He also gave a quick summary of his ongoing project on laptop improvisation with live instruments, for which he is developing a new command-line style live coding environment that will be released soon. For more information regarding this work please follow this link.

The third sub-group of this cluster is headed by Dr. Jez Wells and is entitled Music Production, Processing and Analysis Group (MPPAG). Dr Wells explained how artificial manipulation of a recording can be used to recreate the effect of a large scale acoustic environment on sounds recorded in far more intimate venues. For more information of this and other MPPAG projects follow this link.

The Keynote speaker for this event was Dr. Tuomas Eerola, from Durham University. Guests were very lucky to have an opportunity to hear an expert in the field of Music Emotion Recognition (MER) discussing, what he perceives as, the shortcomings of research in this area thus far. Eerola argued that there are three major issues with current research in this area which can be summarised as Contextual, Conceptual and Data related. After explaining each, he suggested that the mstrc could be seen to address all three of these issues with YMPG tackling the conceptual issues through meaningful constructs and valid and theoretically driven research, TMCC seeking to cover the situational and social dimensions and MPPAG large scale, reliable data.

The event culminated with a performance of an improvised set by Federico Reuben (laptop/live coding), Radek Rudnicki (electronics/analogue synthesisers) and James Mainwaring (saxophone). The evening was then rounded off with a mixer in the department’s beautiful Music Research Centre.

We would like to thank you for your support and attendance at the launch of the Music, Science and Technology Research Cluster last Friday. It was a great event and we were very happy to see so many people there. I hope that the event was worthwhile and that you now know more about the cluster, its direction and ambitions.

Please keep in touch if you are interested in our research and activities, would like to collaborate, or get involved in any capacity.

Federico Reuben (Director of mstrc & TMCG)

Jez Wells (Director of MPPAG)

Hauke Egermann (Director of YMPG)

 

 

 

 

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Music, Science and Technology Research Cluster

Launch Event Friday, 25 November 2016

Welcome to the Music, Science and Technology Research Cluster (mstrc) Launch Event. mstrc is a new research cluster in the Department of Music, University of York, comprising an international and interdisciplinary community of staff and research students working in areas across music, science and technology. It currently consists of three research groups:

  • York Music Psychology Group (YMPG)
  • Music Production, Processing and Analysis Group (MPPAG)
  • Technologies for Musical Creativity Group (TMCG)

Cluster Director: Dr. Federico Reuben

Programme:

  • 5:00pm Welcome address and mstrc presentation
  • 5:45pm Keynote speaker: Professor Tuomas Eerola ‘Modelling Emotions in Music: Lessons Learnt’
  • 6:45pm Performance: Reuben/Rudnicki/Mainwaring
  • 7:15pm Wine reception with canapés

Location: Rymer Auditorium, Department of Music, University of York. For more information about mstrc, please visit: https://www.mstrcyork.org or contact our director Dr Federico Reuben at federico.reuben@york.ac.uk

York Music Psychology Group

The York Music Psychology Group (YMPG) aims to explain and understand musical behaviour and experience, including the production, processing, and reception of music. In addition to establishing this knowledge, we also apply it to music practice and the development of music technology. The York Music Psychology Group meets on a weekly basis in term time in the Music Department at The University of York. These sessions are open to all and include journal club discussions of recently published research, talks given by external, guest speakers from the field and presentations of current research being proposed and conducted by members.

Group Director: Dr. Hauke Egermann hauke.egerman@york.ac.uk

Music Production, Processing and Analysis Group

Music production environments are complex places where creativity and engineering, technology and human beings interact. Production is now a mature discipline with its own rich history, but also a present that continues to change dramatically. The research group (MPPAG) covers projects that contribute to new techniques and technologies for interacting with sound as well as those that respond to such developments in the studio and understand them from a human and cultural perspective. This group aims to solve problems and contribute to expressive possibilities within the practice of music production in a way that is informed by how this multi-discipline has shaped, and been shaped, by the society in which it exists.

Group Director: Dr. Jez Wells                                   jez.wells@york.ac.uk

Technology for Musical Creativity Group

The Technologies for Musical Creativity Group (TMCG) focuses on the development of technology that, as a fundamental principle, considers the complexities of musical and creative processes. For this purpose, we utilise integrated and interdisciplinary approaches combining artistic, scientific and engineering methods with a critical understanding of musical practice, listening conventions, and socio-musical relations. We ask how technology can aid, enhance and facilitate creativity in composition, performance, improvisation, and other creative practices in music and sound art. The research group also aims to examine how musical creativity can be computationally modelled, simulated and replicated.

Group Director: Dr. Federico Reuben  federico.reuben@york.ac.uk

Keynote

Prof. Tuomas Eerola, University of Durham

‘Modelling Emotions in Music: Lessons Learnt’ 

Music Emotion Recognition (MER) has attracted increased attention during the last five years in data science, music information retrieval and music psychology. This presentation puts together central themes that need attention in order to make advances in the topic. Within each theme, the central challenges are discussed and promising further avenues are presented. In conceptual theme, significant discrepancies in the terminologies, models and focus of research still persist. In contextual theme, the primary area of improvement is incorporating music and user contexts including cultural differences and situations, activities and preferences into emotion recognition. For the validity of data, reliable estimation of mid-level musical concepts requires significant attention. Finally, pulling together efforts that combine studies with high validity and high stimulus quantity is the key to robust music emotion recognition models.

Prof. Tuomas Eerola obtained his MA degree in musicology at the University of Jyväskylä (Finland) in 1997. His pre-doctoral work involved periods of study at Leicester University (UK) and Cornell University (USA). In 2003, he finished his PhD at University of Jyväskylä in musicology (music cognition). In 2003-2006, he worked as postdoctoral researcher at the same institution, followed by a postdoctoral position at an EU Project (Tuning the Brain for Music). Since 2007, he has held a professorship at the the University of Jyväskylä (Finland), first associated with Music, Mind & Technology MA programme and later as a Chair of Musicology. Eerola is also affiliated with the Finnish Centre of Excellence in Interdisciplinary Music Research. In 2013, he moved to UK and now works at Durham University.

Performance

The performance will consist of an improvised set by Federico Reuben (laptop/live coding), Radek Rudnicki (electronics/analogue synthesisers) and James Mainwaring (saxophone).

Federico Reuben is a composer, sound artist, performer and academic based in York. His practice as a live electronics performer and laptop improviser combines machine listening, generative and algorithmic systems, signal processing and live coding techniques, allowing for a type of computer performance that is modular, generative, intuitive and based on adaptation and exchange. As a laptop improviser he has played with improvisers including as Phil Minton, John Edwards, Tony Marsh, Steve Noble, Ingrid Laubrock, Mark Sanders, Alexander Hawkins, Dominic Lash, Aleksander Kolkowski and the London Improvisers Orchestra.

www.federicoreuben.com

Radek Rudnicki is a UK based sound artist, performer and researcher. Focused on using improvised material in multidisciplinary projects. He is interested in interactive multimedia, visual arts and multidisciplinary projects combining art and science. He emphasises a varied range of digital music, including contemporary composition and free improvisation. He is founder of Space F!ght, co-founder of RPE Duo, Kirki Project and lead sound designer of Precyzja Foundation. He also runs Wave Folder Records.

radek-rudnicki.net

James Mainwaring is an award winning saxophonist, composer and teacher with progressing interests in music which integrates composition and improvisation using acoustic and electronic instrumentation. James is involved in a number of projects including the Mercury, Mobo and Jazz FM award nominated Roller Trio. In 2012 James received a Jazz Services grant to record his debut quartet album, which will feature pianist Matthew Bourne, Mick Bardon and Joost Hendrickx. Other projects include various line ups from a Leeds-based collective of improvising musicians, multi-media project Space Fight and Stoop Quintet.

www.jamesmainwaringmusic.com