Deafspace, 2015. Composition, live performance.
Sound is the language I studied in my undergraduate career. Like any other language it can literally inform you about reality, metaphorically affect your emotions, and abstractly introduce you to beauty and complexity you’d never realize you take for granted every day. With the Berkeley Center for New Media, I worked as a kind of translator of sound, interpreting and representing the medium between musicians and an audience most would consider incapable of hearing. Tarek Atoui, who has been leading the charge into Deafspace and making musical instruments for the non-hearing, would have me and you reconsider. The short of it is that vibrations happen in all shapes and sizes, and the ones we perceive to be “in the range of human hearing” are just the slice of the spectrum that the ear picks up. Collaborating with Berkeley’s Center for New Music and Audio Technologies and Meyer Sound, we built instruments and wrote music that the whole body hears. There’s no standard for infra-bass musical notation or conduction, which challenged me with the freedom to invent my own. I spent a lot of time in a practice room digitally pitch-shifting a didgeridoo and the low strings of an electric violin and countless nights in cafes sketching the sounds into a coherent graphic score.