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New speaker system gives Performance Hall interactivity

Performance Hall Calendar ImageBy: MAKENZIE CONNORS
Staff Writer

The Raclin School of the Arts got a new sound system, and they want you to hear it.

At 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 12, the Louise E. Addicott and Yatish J. Joshi Performance Hall will host a concert demonstrating Electroacoustic Music with a few different pieces that will display the possibilities and power of the system, called the Meyer Sound Constellation System, which allows many different genres of music to be performed in this hall.

The system contains 75 speakers around the hall that “can host electronic pieces that can incorporate multichannel surround panning,” Thomas Limbert, assistant professor of music, said.

The sound system can create many different ways to perceive the sound that can be heard equally by anyone in the audience. For example, sound can move through the speakers of the performance hall, which creates depth and movement.

The performance on Feb. 12 will be more of a “demo over a traditional concert,” Limbert said.

Rather than a typical show with performers and instruments, it will display different synthesized sounds that are sometimes mixed with recordings of instruments.

This has not yet been done in this auditorium. The staff and producers will make it an interactive experience by involving different lights to collaborate with the sound. The show will primarily consist of three different pieces.

The first piece is called “Papua New Guinea: Sounds of the Forest,” which is a piece by Thomas Limbert displaying many different synthesized sounds that recreate a rainforest.

Limbert said it is a “soundscape” that will “show off” how the audio system will be able to make the audience hear the sounds of birds and other synthesized creatures of the rainforest move throughout the auditorium.

The second piece is by new media student Sheehan Probst, which was inspired by a speech given by American astronomer Carl Sagan titled “Pale Blue Dot.”

Probst explained that the speech discusses the earth on a stellar level in relation to the rest of the universe and really shows “how small our lives are.”

Probst mentioned that even though the speech was about three minutes long, his piece will be about ten minutes in length and will put “sounds to space” into perspective.

The final work is going to be a combination of a live performance done by the Euclid Quartet and synthesized sounds playing through the speakers. The quartet will play their instruments on stage while different audio effects will accompany them as it moves throughout the performance hall.

The Performance Hall has an extraordinary sound system that has yet to demonstrate its full potential because it is relatively new. This performance will be able to illustrate some of the fantastic abilities that the sound system has, and will truly be a remarkable and “unique” experience for the audience, Limbert said.

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