Academic Papers

Phil Winsor's Il Passaggio Spaziale

The Fulfillment of a Vision

Il Passaggio Spaziale is a multi-media, electro-acoustic composition by Phil Winsor that is found in several versions across a time span of eighteen years. The composer’s program and performance notes detail his original intentions for the work. An analysis of Il Passaggio Spaziale yields the methods that Winsor used to fulfill his musical vision for the work. An examination of the various versions, will display Winsor’s use of emerging technologies (MIDI, digital audio software, fractal software, digital video software and DVD authoring) to adapt and advance Il Passaggio Spaziale to ultimately fulfill his artistic vision.

 

Phil Winsor's Formosan Aboriginal Legends

A Technical and Aesthetic Consideration

The Formosan Aboriginal Legends are early computer music videos of American composer Phil Winsor. They include three works: Sky Gods of Tavarong, Sacred 100 Pace Snake, and Ritual of Enemy Heads. Like many of Winsor’s works, full realization involves an intermedia solution with video and audio components. Winsor’s writings concerning these computer music videos reveal his technical and aesthetic approach. As an artist constantly involved with changes in technology, these works display a blending of techniques spanning over thirty years.

 

Macrostructure and Transition in an Algorithmic Composition Environment

Algorithmic composition is applied to a wide variety of composer/machine interactions. The term computer aided algorithmic composition (CAAC) is generally accepted to describe this activity in its various guises. Many software programs and computer procedures that are appealing to a composer yield results that reflect a microstructural composition strategy. Large scale formal events seem to
have been a secondary concern for the early contributors to computer music and little has been written concerning macrostructural shaping an transitional linking in algorithmic composition. This paper examines a possible solution for generating larger musical constructs and a method to link them together.

 

Phil Winsor's MYST

Research and Art

Believing composition to be both research and art, Phil Winsor was invested in the exploration of expanded techniques for algorithmic composition, intermedia art, sonification, and therapeutic uses of computer controlled music. A proposed research project involving therapeutic effects of music included the building of an instrument to provide algorithmically generated sonic material for researchers to use in assessing the effects of said material on the brain. Using electroencephalograms, researchers could gather data to determine possible beneficial techniquesfor sonic therapy. The instrument Winsor createdwas called MYST and this paper will examine that instrument and its use in an intermedia work entitled Myst.

 

Hindemith and Algorithmic Harmonic Generation

Hindemith proposed a chord analysis system based on his theoretical observations in the Craft of Musical Composition. His concept of chord classification based on the presence of a tritone in a vertical structure allowed him to developa method for measuring the tension in a progression of chords called Harmonic Fluctuation. These notions are the basis of a harmonic generating algorithm that allows a user to choose the chords in a progression and plan the
harmonic tension of the progression.

 

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