Brain cap - research by Eduardo Miranda. Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR)

Researchers and innovators from across the world will be travelling to Plymouth this month for a major global conference on the potential impacts of computer music.

The 11th International Symposium on Computer Music Multidisciplinary Research (CMMR) – carrying the title Music, Mind, and Embodiment – will take place from June 16-19.

Hosted by Plymouth University’s Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR), the conference will include addresses, workshops and performances at the University and in venues across the city.

There will be keynote addresses by Hugues Vinet, Director of Research and Development at IRCAM in Paris, David Rosenboom (Professor of Music and Dean of the School of Music at California Institute of the Arts, and Eduardo Miranda, (Professor of Computer Music at Plymouth University).

It will feature a series of concerts and installations by members of the Plymouth research cluster and other global academics, all designed to demonstrate how computer technology is increasingly able to enhance the appreciation and understanding of music.

Two awards, backed by symposium sponsors I-CubeX, will also be presented to the best doctoral level and masters level students showcasing their research.

The CMMR was first held in 2003, with previous symposia having taken place in France, Denmark, Italy and India, but this is only the second time it has been staged in the UK.

Professor Miranda, Director of the ICCMR and conference chair, said:

“This is a high profile international conference, and it is a great honour for Plymouth University to be hosting CMMR this year. It confirms our place at the forefront of computer music research, and will provide an opportunity to showcase the cutting edge research being pioneered in Plymouth. We have delegates coming from six continents and it also provides a chance for us to share experiences and discuss potential future collaborations.”

The ICCMR is based in The House at Plymouth University, and includes academics and PhD students working to identify a range of innovative techniques which analyse the brain’s response to music and movement.

Among the pioneering projects currently being undertaken by the ICCMR is a brain computer music interface (BCMI), through which a user wears a head cap to link a computer screen with their visual cortex, enabling them to control musical performances using just their vision.

Exciting exploratory work is also underway into biocomputers, using organic material as part of an electrical circuit which can influence and respond to musical scores, and research is also continuing into audience perceptions of music and movement, and the ways these can be adapted to influence existing and future compositions.

That work, and the scientific understanding it has generated, has informed a number of cutting edge performances, many of which have been premiered at the annual Peninsula Arts Contemporary Music Festival staged at the University every February.

Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR)

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