Thursday, March 7, 2013

Nitty-gritty :)

So I spent the most of the afternoon "debugging" :)   Is this still a popular term or am I of a previous generation?  What I am doing is too boring and too unmusical, probably no one wants to hear about it, but as a programmer who performs and composes, these are as important as bringing your instrument to the violin tuner or 'rehairing' your bow. Besides, I need to get these procedure seamless and ready to go, before my summer program starts :)

Below is a bit technical, but to give you an idea what the kind of things I have to do:
I am trying to rehearse long distance (well, Brooklyn/Manhattan LOL!) with Kyoko Kitamura.  I wanted her to test some Max patches to calibrate her voice quality leisurely so she doesn't have to come to my place, and can do this in her own time.  We are both moms and our free times are limited and fragmented :)   There is a part of MaxMSP, a collection of IRCAM objects called FTM, which requires license; I am using it for Kyoko, but in order for her to use it, I need to 'compile' them in a certain way, and this turned out not so simple.

I had to email Paris and find out what I'm doing wrong, and Frédéric Bevilacqua, the head of the Real Time Musical Interaction Team at IRCAM, has been up at 2AM Paris time, trying to solve this problem for me.  The 6-hour time difference between NYC and Paris isn't  great; oh---just as I'm typing this (now 8:14PM on Tuesday night) Fred emailed me, "We will solve this, it will work!", "24/24 service!".   With such a superb tech support, how am I allowed to fail!!?  Pressure, pressure... :)

With Michael Gatonska, with whom I'm preparing the premiere of his new work "Shin rin Yoku" (Forest bathing) on April 10th at the Roulette, (BTW I requested that they modify the website to include this title too, so they will get to it soon I hope!) here are the days' email correspondences about the work, ahead of our face-to-face meeting tomorrow: (with his permission)

Hi, Finally I'm going through your sound and have some questions:
The following environmental sounds (?) have significant background noise, or sound, which I assume is intentional and you don't intend to get it filtered?
The following instrumental sounds are pretty clean but a bit of background noise, maybe ignorable.
SS3_Bowls_Part1, and Part2

Hi Mari,
The environmental sounds are pretty raw, with only minimal high pass filtering and some limiters in use. [...] these environmental sounds were meant to 'sit' in the background, providing a soft and moving sonic 'basso continuo' type of thing rather than being at the forefront or overtaking or matching the violin/Max sounds (which should be in the foreground). I was thinking that we may be able to work these effects in as a subtle background fabric to the piece - I guess we can see what sounds good or is flat out unusable and make our decisions.  I have been approaching what I have sent to you as a sort of fluid music score, until we work out what we like and make it more concrete.

Just to get me going---the first page, when you said "Sound sample 1 rise and fall in dynamics imitating violin sound envelop"
I thought that would be a bit tough, since it's PPP for me :)   but I could actually track the pitch which seems to match the < > sometimes, or we could time it, etc. etc.   Do you want the electronic sounds to cresc. when I am NOT playing?
I have filters and you can choose what you like.  I can actually control the filters in realtime as well...  I will have it handy in case you want to try.

Hi Mari,
Yes, I thought the crescendo sounds during the first section should follow when you are not playing -- but they should also interact (weave in and out) when you are playing the longer lines, or phrases.  Essentially, it is a section that should build in sound levels, similar to a graded echo and crescendo over time. Does this make any sense? :)

Yes I understand.  I'm trying to see the ways to control the cresc. decresc.   One way 'maybe' that I count the numbers of bow change (I can do that :)  which could control the electronics.   (please don't mind me, I'm thinking aloud :)   BTW would it be OK if I publish these correspondences in my blog?    I think it is very interesting :)

Don't worry about thinking out loud, it gives me a sense of what you are doing. And please use anything in your blog that you feel appropriate or significant :)

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