"A Note on Triumph" Meshes Acoustics with Digital Sounds to Create Hybrid Instruments

01 Oct, 2012

"A Note on Triumph" Meshes Acoustics with Digital Sounds to Create Hybrid Instruments

Sivan Eldar, Ph.D. student at the University of California, Berkeley in the Music Department with a Designated Emphasis in New Media.

As a composition major, the majority of Sivan Elder's research is driven by her musical projects. Working together with Regent's lecturer pianist Gloria Cheng on a new composition for piano and live electronic this year, Eldar carefully manipulated and mapped piano samples, then seamlessly integrated them with the live piano sound. The role of the electronics was to extend and manipulate the acoustic sound, ultimately creating a new hybrid instrument out of the piano's acoustic properties. In the first section of the composition Eldar extended the piano's resonance, and in the second she stretched its tuning. Finally, in the third section, both the resonance, tuning and attack properties were transformed simultaneously, resulting in the transformation of the piano into a hybrid harpsichord. The loudspeaker was placed inside the piano - facing the soundboard - in order to achieve maximum integration between the digital and acoustic sounds. The pre-compositional work and the final concert took place at Berkeley's Center for New Music and Audio Technologies (CNMAT).

Eldar will be traveling to New York for her new work with Yarn/Wire, a group of two pianists, two percussionist, along with live electronics. Eldar continues to try to extend the concept of the hybrid instrument, now in a chamber music setting. She will do most of the technology-related work this summer at CNMAT, leading up to the work's premiere in November.

She is currently spending the academic year as a Fulbright fellow at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. She will be working with Dr. Rataj, professor of electroacoustic and multimedia composition, and founder of rAdioCUSTICA, an acoustic arts program under the auspices of the European Broadcasting Union. She will also be producing shows for rAdioCUSTICA, featuring her work and the work of other, primarily American, composers and sound artists. During that year Eldar will also participate in the 8th international composition festival at the IMPULS academy in Graz (Austria), working with fellow European composers.