Sonic arts: creativity with sound

Course Dates: 16/06/20 - 30/06/20
Time: 13:00 - 17:30
Location: Online

Sonic arts is the expression of creativity through sound. Enjoy a series of creative exercises, with study and discussion of contemporary and historical context and practice, and create your own sound art.

This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.


What is the course about?

Sonic art is the creative use of sound beyond the traditional boundaries of music. This course is intended as an introduction to some key areas in this broad and exciting field, with a focus on hands-on experimentation, online collaboration, and mindful approaches to sound in times of isolation. The course will inform and develop your enthusiasm for artistic creativity with sound, and enable you to create your own works.

This is a live online face-to-face course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- An introduction to sonic art: its diverse approaches, and its relationship with music and fine art practice. Examples will range from contemporary sound artists such as Christine Sun Kim and Onyx Ashanti through Susan Philipsz’s Turner Prize-winning sound installations to the earlier works of John Cage Delia Derbyshire and Pierre Schaeffer [external websites]
- Developing creative practice: your own approach to making sonic art
- Using technology to create performances, installations, or recorded works
- Using audio editing software and handheld recorders (including your phone).

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Identify the soundscape around you, and find words and symbols to describe sounds
- Discuss sound works, your own projects, and the work of others on the course
- Record and edit sounds using handheld microphones and software (please note that this will not be the focus of the course, but an introduction will be provided as appropriate to the group).
- Combine techniques to develop your own pieces, in the form of a recording, performance, or sound installation.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This is an introductory course. No prior musical or technical skills are required, but the course will also cater for students with previous experience.
You will be asked to follow written and verbal instructions in English, engage in class discussions through video calls, and take notes.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

A set of exercises will be available through Google Classroom to access outside class time, including experimental techniques to compose with a computer.
Sound editing examples will take place through Audacity, which is free and available for both Mac and Window; visit Audacity [external website] to download the version for your platform.
Work on your own projects outside the class is optional, but strongly encouraged.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

You will need:
- a Mac or Windows computer
- (optional) a smartphone or handheld recorder
- headphones and/or a quiet space for listening exercises
- paper and pen.pencil.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

You may also be interested in exploring your creative side further in Composition or Songwriting, or developing your skill in recording and editing audio through other Music technology and digital audio production courses.
For advice, email the Music department .

Tutor Biographies
Charles Matthews Tutor Website

Charles Matthews is a sound artist and audio programmer whose practice ranges from interactive installations to bespoke accessible instruments in both physical and online spaces. Charles started producing music online in 1998 as a DJ on the UK's first online pirate radio station, interFACE. Having toured the UK and Europe with electronic label Seed Records, he went on to study gamelan music at the Indonesian Institiute for the Arts in Surakarta, and has a PhD in algorithmic composition adapted for Javanese music theory. His Augmented Gamelan project (a live ensemble with integrated electronic sound and light) has been presented at the Bela Bartok National Concert Hall in Budapest, the Muziekgebow on the IJ in Amsterdam, the György-Ligeti-Saal in Graz, and an empty swimming pool in Kilburn. More recent activities include sound pieces made out of hand-held vibrating torches, analysis of brainwaves, and the movement of single-celled creatures. Charles is currently establishing collaborations between the UK and Canada as Maker in Residence at Milieux Institute, Montreal.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.

This course has now finished

Course Code: MK708

Finished Tue, day, 16 Jun - 30 Jun '20

Duration: 3 sessions (over 3 weeks)

Full fee: £179.00
Senior fee: £143.00
Concession: £109.00

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.