Integration of new interfaces of gestural control in classical music performance



John Sullivan


Classical musicians in the performance domain must usually dedicate most of their artistic activity to perform works from the traditional repertoire composed for acoustical instruments. Therefore, performance practices in the classical music domain have had rather little contact with the expression possibilities of newer technologies for gestural control, which are extensively used in contemporary musical works.  The projects gathered here represent different ways to integrate new interfaces of gestural control in the creative work of classical musicians by exploiting performers’ sound-gesture expertise.

From tension to touch is a performance project of pianist Felipe Verdugo where the audience can feel through vibrations the performer’s muscle activity not related to the motion of body segments but to the embodiment of musical expression in terms of tension. By using the tools currently in development in the MappEMG project, this performance makes tangible through the audience’s smartphones vibrations pianist’s muscle activity of the core, a central body structure that can be used to embody musical tension while fostering fluency of arm and hand movements. The tools of the MappEMG project were also used in the performance eMusicorps, a collaborative performance project (U. de Montréal / Collège Montmorency / McGill U.) led by Felipe Verdugo at the S2M lab.

Moving sounds | moving spaces, led by pianist Justine Pelletier in collaboration with Edu Meneses, is a performance project that explores and enhances the implied motion information embedded in the music itself through sound spatialization. The sound of the piano is spatialized in real time by mapping data from a dancer’s gestures captured with two DMIs, the T-Stick and GuitarAMI. The aim of the dancer’s gestures is to gesturally represent the virtual spaces and movements evoked by the inflections of musical parameters controlled by the pianist during the performance.

IDMIL Participants:

External Participants:

Sylvie Gibet

Research Areas: