Ensemble TriOcular+, comprised of Charlotte Hug (Zurich), François Houle (Vancouver), Lori Freedman (Montreal), and composer Linda Bouchard will perform two Live Structures, pieces that use real-time graphics to explore different ways of interpreting data into musical notation.  

Using her custom digital tool Ocular Score, Bouchard pushes the boundaries of expression while revealing the high-octane creativity of the performers. 

The Live Structures Project started in 2017. Bouchard wanted to find a way to create images from the analysis of complex sounds and to import them into traditional musical scores, as with images on paper. But like any exciting research project, curiosity leads to unsuspected discoveries. 

The latest versions of Ocular Score allow the composer to interact with the graphic score as it is being created in a performance setting. The musicians’ sounds, sent through the Ocular Score software, create images that the composer manipulates with the help of filters. These visualizations produce graphic scores created in real-time and used in live performances. 

In this process, the composer can choose certain shapes for the musical gestures; change the tessitura or add color, and distortion; and control the size and scale of the shapes. She can also delay the drawing of the image. She can use a low-frequency oscillation (LFO) to shape the phrasing of the musical gestures by periodically removing the image entirely. 

The initial goal – images from complex sounds — has been transcended: we no longer interpret a sound, transposing it as an image. We have created a dynamic performance environment. 

The Ocular Score was developed in collaboration with programmer Joseph Browns during a residency at Matralab, Concordia University in Montréal, Québec, Canada.


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