Krzysztof Gawlas, PhD – study visit at the Maynooth University

Name of the project under which the study visit was made:

Increasing adult participation in IT tools and technologies education – “NITKA”

Financed by: Priority 4: Higher education and science, Measure 4.3 Strengthening and development of the didactic potential of universities in key areas for the objectives of Europe 2020 Strategy

Name and title of the academic making the study visit:

Krzysztof Gawlas, PhD

Date of the study visit:

3-29.11.2014

Destination of the study visit:

Maynooth University, Maynooth, Co. Kildare, Ireland.

Supervisor:

Gordon Delap, PhD

Short summary of the study visit:

The main form of work during the internship was classroom observation of the Music Technology course, as well as participation in conferences and concerts taking place in the course of the visit.

4 November, 10 AM – meeting the staff of the Department of Music, a brief presentation of my own academic activity and of the Department of Art and the Game and Virtual Space Design course. Presenting the objectives of the internship.

Classes observed:

3 November (and subsequent Mondays) – Victor Lazzarrini, PhD – Audio Programming. Basics of C++ language with the focus on its applications in audio synthesis and processing.

3 November (and subsequent Mondays) – Composition techniques in instrumental music. Examples from own work and the works of other composers. Dr Ryan Molloy – Composition.

4 November (and subsequent Tuesdays) Brian Connolly (doctoral student) – Acoustics. Introduction to music acoustics. Morphology of sound. Examples from electroacoustic music and own work.

4 November (and subsequent Tuesdays) – Gordon Delap, PhD – Composition. Analysis of flagship electroacoustic works. Extracting elements which can be used in own compositions. Discussing students’ works.

4 November (and subsequent Tuesdays) – Shane Byrne – Synthesis. Introduction to audio synthesis – basic methods and their application. Working in the Csound environment.

5 November (and subsequent Wednesdays) – Paul Keegan – recording studio – practical classes. Teaching students how to use studio equipment. Assignment – producing a radio announcement for a musical composition in a studio

10 November – Culann mac Cabe (graduate) – Audio & Music Technology Development. Spatial sound projection in stereo and surround systems. Presentation of the DJ Studio mobile application.

Lectures – own presentations:

18 November – Gordon Delap’s composition class – Rite of the Earth, frequency based composition, ambisonic sound projection. Presentation of a series of compositions made under the “Earth Sounds Academy” (Akademia dźwięków ziemi) project by the Faculty of Art of the Silesian University.

24 November – Ryan Molloy’s composition class – Interferences for piano quintet and electronics ad lib. – Computer Assisted Composition using OpenMusic, introduction to programming in OpenMusic, examples of own programs used to work on the piece titled Interferences (Interferencje); presentation of the piece.

Concerts:

5 November (and subsequent Wednesdays) – concerts at Riverstown Hall – concerts by students, graduates and tutors of the Department of Music – traditional Irish music, classical chamber music.

27 November – a concert by doctoral students. The concert programme included several short electroacoustic pieces by doctoral students from the Music Technology course.

The study of library resources. The Maynooth University has a modern, well-stocked library. The music section has a large collection of scores, including many important recent works, as well as publications on the theory of music, Irish traditional music, electroacoustic music and music computer science.

A trip to Belfast – SARC:

Sonic Arts Research is one of Europe’s largest centres conducting research as well as artistic and didactic activities related to electroacoustic music. During my visit I had an opportunity to participate in a workshop which was held there and also to visit the recording studios and lecture halls which, as it turned out, are organized in a similar way to ours.

Didactic conclusions: The programme of the Music Technology course offered by the Music Department of the Maynooth University is slightly different from the programme of our faculty. Part of their educational offer corresponds to ours. The main focus, however, is put on the basics of general programming – C++, Csound – and music composition – traditional and electroacoustic. Compared to our Game Audio specialization, it offers more general education and fewer practical classes.

Signed/proposed forms of co-operation (is it worth starting co-operation or are the differences too great…)

It seems worth co-operating in terms of students and academics exchange (Erasmus). Also the artistic co-operation – organizing concerts, presenting the best diploma works, etc. – seems desirable.