Ear to the Earth 2008
The 2008 Ear to the Earth Festival was held 9–25 October at different venues around New York City. The festival included a commissioned premiere of Alvin Curran's Trans-DadaExpress: The Brooklyn Bridge using sounds from the bridge itself, and a multimedia portrayal of New York City during a 24-hour period called New York Big Fritz, to which many artists contributed and which was produced in collaboration with the New York University (NYU) Music Technology Program. An evening concert included Metropolis Atlantis by Charlie Morrow, for conch shells and electronics, and a series of pieces by Mathew Burtner for a variety of sound-making apparatus in addition to computers and saxophones. Other events included the launch of the preservation project entitled New York Soundscape, and public forums on urban noise and acoustic ecology.
The Seoul International Computer Music Festival (SICMF) was held 9–12 November 2008 at the Seoul Arts Center Jayu Theater in Seoul, South Korea. In addition to concerts, the conference included seminars conducted by Michael Zbyszynski ("Composing Instruments") and by Apple Computer audio engineer Iroro Orife ("Current Directions in Audio Signal Processing"). The Electroacoustic Music Studies Asian Network (EMSAN) held a workshop on EMSAN and the Leonardo Abstracts Service, an effort to collect and submit electroacoustic music Masters, PhD, and MFA dissertation abstracts to the Leonardo abstracts database. The final concert of the festival was entitled "Shadow Play" and included Jonathan Green's Piece for Piano and Lamp, Jonathan Harvey's Advaya, and Linda Buckley's Wayang. The annual SICMF events are organized by the Korean Electroacoustic Music Society.
New Adventures in Sound Art (NAISA) held its seventh annual SOUNDplay festival 20 September–26 October 2008 in Toronto, Canada. SOUNDplay is "a meeting point for experimentation in new media and sound art pushing the boundaries and encouraging new fusions of image, sound and text." This year the sound installation works were oriented around a sense of place through sound (see Figure 1). Among the pieces was Jane Tingley's Peripheral Response, which responds to the viewer's locations by tapping Morse code with robotically controlled tap shoes. An evening concert, "The Legacy of John Chowning," opened with a talk by James Harley on the significance of Mr. Chowning's musical and scientific work, and included three pieces by the composer: Stria, Phoné, and Turenas. "Living Cinema" was the title of an evening that included a live collaboration between Bob Ostertag and animator Pierre Hébert, as well as other "socially engaged" video music pieces.
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Electroacoustic Music in Rome
The First International Electroacoustic Music Festival of the Santa Cecilia Academy of Music was held in Rome, Italy, 18–30 November 2008. Works were selected by an open call in [End Page 5] four categories: acousmatic works, audiovisual compositions, live electronics, and installations. During the twelve-day festival, pieces were performed at various locations around Rome, including the Conservatorio S. Cecilia, l'Università di Roma "Tor Vergata," and the Accademia di Belle Arti di Roma. Special events included performances of music by Riccardo Bianchini, Francis Dhomont and Inés Wickmann, Franco Evangelisti, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Jean-Claude Risset, Alexander Peci and Valerio Maria Ferrari, and Walter Branchi.
Tempo Reale Festival in Florence
The first Tempo Reale Festival was held in Florence, Italy, 20–28 November 2008. The festival works all involved electronic music, and consisted of concerts, musical theater works, and installations. The theme for this first edition was "Sampling," in recognition of the role recording has had in electroacoustic music over the past few decades. The festival was organized by the Tempo Reale Centre (which was founded by Luciano Berio) and hosted by the dance venue Cango, directed by Virgilio Sieni.