The Center for Research in Electronic Art Technology, or CREATE, and the Media Arts and Technology Program, or MAT, presented an electronic and visual music show called “Sound Storm” at the Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall last night.
Established in 1986, CREATE is devoted to further investigation of the potential relationship between music and other forms of media, such as experimental visualizations. The show brought together renowned Atlanta-based electronic musician Richard Devine, the CREATE Ensemble, music professor Curtis Roads, recent MAT graduate Casey Mongoven, Ph.D candidate in the MAT program Michael Hetrick and musician Laurent Delforge for a night of collaboration between sound and science.
Roads began the show by presenting the world premiere of his most recent work, “Always”, a polyrhythmic piece that ran almost seven minutes long. According to Roads, CREATE brings together a range of talents from various disciplines.
“I think we have a unique program,” Roads said, “We’re bringing together artists, engineers and scientists, and we actually have a great group of faculty and a fantastic group of students.”
Devine, who came all the way from Atlanta for his first show and visit to Santa Barbara, ended his show with his 35-minute piece called “Disturbances.” He called working with Roads “the coolest thing ever,” saying he was honored to play alongside the well-respected professor and composer, who has also taught at Harvard University.
“I’m a huge fan of Curtis Roads,” Devine said. “It was an extreme honor to come out and pay homage to somebody that I’ve been listening to for a couple of decades. I can’t even believe I’m playing the show with him.”
In regards to the MAT program, Devine said he was impressed by the projects he witnessed, “It’s unbelievably insane what’s going on in there,” he said. “I just got a small glimpse, but it’s so cutting-edge.”
Also at the show, Mongoven made his debut presentation of “Bit Representations No. 2,” a visual music piece that, when played in completion, created an artwork spanning the entire screen. Mongoven said he believes CREATE’s shows provide a vehicle for an exciting assemblage of performances.
“I think the CREATE shows are always pretty exciting, we have a very diverse group of performers and composers,” Mongoven said.
In regards to his work that was played Wednesday night, Mongoven explained the technical composition of the piece.
“It’s an eight channel work, an electroacoustic work, and it’s a sonification of eight different bit representation sequence,” Mongoven said. “I have synchronized visualizations at the same time.”
In describing his piece, Mongoven said it was “probably the weirdest one of the night.”
The CREATE Ensemble — which includes eight different musicians — presented its world premiere Ambiguous Suggestions while Hetrick presented a world premiere of his performance “And what if it’s not?” and Delforge’s 2011 work “Dragonfly” was shown.
A version of this story appeared on page 5 of the Thursday, November 21, 2013’s print edition of the Daily Nexus.