Workshop: Composing 3D music using SuperCollider and ambisonics
Date: 1st of October
Place: LMTA Musical Innovation Studies Centre, Vilnius, Lithuania
Workshop material: Download on Github (will be available from the day of the workshop)
Address: Gedimino pr. 42 LT-01110 Vilnius, Lithuania
As part of the Envelope Festival, an immersive sound festival happening from September 10 till October 29 in the Baltic-Nordic region in person and online, I will be teaching a workshop on how to write algorithmic music for 3D sound systems (ambisonics) using SuperCollider.
In this workshop, participants will learn how to make music and sound design in three dimensional sound using the SuperCollider programming language. That is, sound composed using ambisonics — a wonderful sound technology that allows audio composers to create spatial sound scenes for playback in multi channel sound systems, virtual reality, binaural headphones (with or without head tracking) as well as stereo speaker setups. Using the “Ambisonic Toolkit for SuperCollider” software (a free and open source extension for the sound programming environment SuperCollider), this workshop will guide participants through the basics and theory of the technology and equip them with the code and understanding to continue experimenting with and exploring 3D sound. All software used in the workshop is free, open source and cross platform compatible.
To make the use of our time at the workshop as effective and productive as possible, the participant must prepare and study a few things in advance. Participants will need to bring a computer and a pair of headphones.
Installing the software
Make sure that the following software is installed and working on your computer before the workshop. If you run into any problems with installing any of this, do not hesitate to ask for help on the SuperCollider forums (you will be met with super friendly people, I promise). The computer must have SuperCollider installed. See this link for information on how to download and install. Once SuperCollider installed, the sc3-plugins must be installed (these are additional sound effects and synthesis components needed for the workshop).
Finally, the Ambisonic Toolkit needs to be installed.
Prerequisite SuperCollider knowledge
Do not worry if you have not used SuperCollider much (or at all) before the workshop. There is a lot of material out there that can help you get up to speed. This workshop will be as gentle as possible, but there is a lot of material to cover so in order for you to get the most out of your time at the workshop, it is highly recommended that you familiarise yourself with the basics of the language. If you enjoy learning by watching videos, it is recommended to follow tutorial 1 to 7 in this highly enjoyable series by Eli Fieldsteel. If instead you would rather like a written introduction to the language, this PDF by Bruno Ruviaro is a classic.