this collaborative project is an audience interactive piece for a spatial audio ambisonic environment. the audience hereby directs the spatial location of the singer’s voice during the concert.
ambisonics is a spatial audio technique that enables sound to spread in a 3d way inside a space; e.g. within one entire (concert) venue or studio. the perfect ambisonic speaker setting resembles a dome. the speakers are arranged in multiple height layers. the main factors that create the 3d effect are the distance, azimuth, and elevation between speaker and listener.
the art university project by japanese artist kiyu nishida and me was part of a seminar held by dr. markus noisternig at hfg karlsruhe.
kiyu’s and my intention was to find a way to make the audience part of the concert. a live spatial audio concert is enrobing the audience in a completely different way than regular concerts. they can hear the music coming from all directions, from above them, to their left, their right, and all the spots in between. hence it gets even more interesting if it is the audience that is co-conducting some of the music’s location in space.
for the spatialization and interactive content, we decided to go with a specifically created wifi network to which the audience connects their devices (smartphone, tablet, laptop).
once the users (audience) connect their smartphone to the wifi network, they can access a venue-navigation map on their web browser.
once the music starts, two guests from the audience – randomly chosen by the web browser – are conducting the location of the performer’s voice, by moving their finger on the web browser’s map.
after half a minute two new randomly chosen audience guests become the conductors and are directing the location of the vocals.
the concert took place in summer 2018 at zkm in karlsruhe, germany. the feedback was great – for once people had a reason to stare at their smartphones while visiting a concert 🙂