The sound of things - A workshop on the musicality of complex acoustic objects - UNM Workshop

The sound of things – A workshop on the musicality of complex acoustic objects – UNM Workshop
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The sound of things – A workshop on the musicality of complex acoustic objects.


The workshop is in three parts and is overseen by Halldór Úlfarsson and Hlynur Aðils Vilmarsson. Participants in the workshop are composers from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland.


First session – Wednesday 29th of August, 15-18.

We will introduce a collection of mundane objects from various materials. The objects will range from an approximately identifiable pitch to mostly noise when agitated (struck or bowed), timbre, overtones and amplitude are expected to be “problematic” in the traditional sense. Participants will be presented with pitch analysis for each object and will also be able to investigate them individually. We will discuss how the acoustics of these objects can be incorporated into musicality and tuning systems that the participants are interested in.


We will theorize about the acoustic behaviour of coupled groupings of some of the objects we are looking at. For example: We might find it likely that a bicycle frame merged with flat rock and glass vase will create a certain chord…


We will decide on a few groupings which will then be prepared by Halldór and Hlynur for the next session.


Second session - Friday 31st of August, 15-18

We will investicate our groupings. We will try agitating the conglomorated objects (with mallet, bow and perhaps sine sweeps via transducer) to see how they behave in their new combined states.


Third session, approximately 20 minutes.

We will briefly introduce our findings at a Jaðarber (Peripherry berry) event in the UNM program.


Participants are welcome to bring their own objects to investigate and participants are welcome to bring musical ideas related to the subject matter for discussion.



This year’s UNM-festival is dedicated to Music Innovation where Lectures and Workshops on the topic of innovation in instrumentation and performance, in close collaboration with LornaLAB,  Reykjavík Art Museum,  Jaðarber – concert series and Iceland Academy of the Arts.


The Music Innovation workshop takes place at Reykjavík Art Museum – Hafnarhús guests of the museum are allowed to take a glance at the progress! The workshop results in a collaboration between 5 composers from the five participating countries in the festival. Alessandro Perini (SE), Ásgeir Aðalsteinsson (IS), I. Øystein J. Figenschou (NO), Kaj Duncan David (DK) and Outi Tarkiainen (FI).