The Eastman Audio Research Studio is defining a new vision for the teaching and creation of electronic music while building on the foundation of the computer music center founded at Eastman School of Music, 26 Gibbs St., Rochester, in 1981 by Allan Schindler.
Spatial audio, sound research tools, construction of installations, invention of new electric and electronic interfaces and instruments and a large inventory of equipment and resources will broaden and enrich the study of sound at Eastman.
EARS is a platform for research, experimentation and creation of new works and sound art at the intersection of musical expression and sound technology. The center gives students access to resources such as software programs, hardware and analog and digital gear for their composing and research projects, in addition to offering courses in electronic music.
EARS, which is based in Room 50 of Eastman School’s Main Building, has equipped its new facility, Room 514), where an expandable 16-channel loudspeaker array will introduce students to working with multiple sound sources.
EARS sponsors a variety of interdisciplinary projects and international exchanges and presents guest lectures and a regular concert series in the School’s Hatch Recital Hall. The center stages projects, which are linked to a performance or venue outside of the Eastman School, in addition to offering support for individual student projects. Current and previous project partners include the University of Rochester and its Memorial Art Gallery, the Strong National Museum of Play, Spectrum Gallery in New York City, and the SinusTon Festival in Magdeburg, Germany.
One of the projects currently being assembled at EARS is the Eastman Mobile Acousmonium. This installation consists of an array of individual custom-built loudspeakers co-designed by students from Eastman and UR. Each speaker has the capacity to tilt, rotate or change its direction, altering sound reflection patterns in a given space. The project is scheduled for completion in March 2017 and will be presented at the Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester.
This year, EARS will introduce a new, free series of portrait concerts revolving around the work of guest artists. Miller Puckette, a professor at the University of California, San Diego who created Max, a music and multimedia synthesis program; and pianist Shiau-uen Ding will perform Philippe Manoury’s composition for piano and electronics, “Pluton,” on Oct. 4. British composer Trevor Wishart will present workshops, lectures and a concert featuring his works Nov. 29.