Commission Music

Commission Music
Bespoke Noise!!

Wednesday, 8 January 2003

Statement of Purpose - CalArts

When I was in high school, I had to decide between pursuing a career in computer programming or in professional tuba playing. On the advice of my tuba teacher, I chose computer science. In college, I finished all the requirements for my major by my junior year, so I took music classes and got interested in composition. I graduated with two majors.

I started a professional career in computer programming, the plan I chose for economic reasons. It wasn't long before I realized that studying computer science is interesting, but day-to-day programming is not. I had a hard time fitting in the culture of Silicon Valley. When I got laid off in 2001, I didn't look for a job right away, but instead considered making a career change to music, but as a composer, rather than as a tuba player.

Last spring I attended the Composing a Career Conference sponsored by the Women's Philharmonic. Almost everyone else there had a master's degree and the presenters all assumed they were speaking to a master's-level audience. Realizing I needed more education, I started looking into graduate programs. Yours caught my interest because of your reputation and your composition � new media program.

I am a noise artist. Primarily, I do tape music, but I would like to branch out to writing for live electronic performance. Your composition-new media program is exciting since it seems to be set up for people with my goals and experience. Your reputation and faculty greatly impress me. I hope to study with Mortin Subotnic, because of his work with MIDI performance tools. His MIDI Jacket is fascinating because of how it links music to gesture. I would like to study the creation and usage of similar tools for application in my own compositions.

Did I spell Subotnic's name right? Did he really invent the MIDI jacket or do I have him confused with someone else? Must double-check. Subotnic, along with Pauline oliveros, was a cofounder of the SF Tape Music Center, which later became CCM. I should talk more about stuff I did at CCM. I saw the MIDI jacket live in concert at the SF Electronic Music Festival. I stood behind Subotnic in line for the bathroom and asked him a million questions about it, sicne it's just so dern facinating. He didn't seem to mind at all and was very cool about answering questions and talking about things he built. I think he used to to be at STEIM. STEIM is really awesome center for new sounds creation devices (especially MIDI stuff in the old days) that's in Amsterdam. When I was in Amsterdam, I stopped by STEIM, but they were busy setting up for a concert in Switzerland and sisn't have time to talk to tourists. I name-dropped like crazy and half the names were set to perform in their concert. anyway. maybe i should try to get an interview with calarts.

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