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Composing for a Networked, Pulse-Based, Laptop Orchestra*

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  14 February 2012

David Ogborn*
Department of Communication Studies & Multimedia, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4M2, Canada


Guided by the idea of participatory culture, networked pulse synchronisation and live coding have been core approaches in the activity of the Cybernetic Orchestra, an electronic performance ensemble at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada. Following general discussion of the way in which networked pulse-based music and live coding work within this orchestra, there is specific discussion of a number of compositional models and practices that have been found effective, including code-sharing, instruction-scores, code as material, and physical performance.

Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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The author would like to thank the members of the Cybernetic Orchestra (2010–11) for their creativity and enthusiasm, and research assistants Alyssa Lai, Stephanie Moore and Rob Petti for their invaluable assistance. This ongoing research has been supported by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Image, Text and Sound Technology programme, as well as by the Arts Research Board of McMaster University.


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