Pamela Z’s free concert is part of IUPUI performing artist mini-residencies

Photo © Mark Estes

Pamela Z                Photo © Mark Estes

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis has announced that the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology’s Department of Music and Arts Technology will host three mini-residencies with performing artists during the 2014-15 school year. Pamela Z, a pioneer in live performance of vocal music with advanced electronics and multimedia, will be the first featured performing artist.

As part of the mini-residency, Pamela Z will perform a concert — co-sponsored by the department and the Indianapolis Opera — that is free to the IUPUI community and the public. It will take place at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 28, at Basile Opera Center, 4011 N. Pennsylvania St., in Indianapolis. Parking is free.

She also will be on the IUPUI campus for a lecture and demonstrations with music and arts technology majors. In a community outreach effort, Pamela Z will participate in a special workshop involving Girls Rock, a nonprofit organization dedicated to building positive self-esteem in girls and encouraging creative expression through music.

Pamela Z is a San Francisco-based composer/performer and media artist who works primarily with voice, live electronic processing, sampled sound and video. A pioneer of live digital looping techniques, she processes her voice in real time to create dense, complex sonic layers. Her solo works combine experimental extended vocal techniques, operatic bel canto, found objects, text and sampled concrète sounds.

She uses MAX MSP and Isadora software on a MacBook Pro along with custom MIDI controllers that allow her to manipulate sound and image with physical gestures. Her performances range in scale from small concerts in galleries to large-scale multimedia works in flexible black-box venues and proscenium halls. In addition to her performance work, she has a growing body of intermedia gallery works including multichannel sound and video installations. She has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Japan.

 About the Department of Music and Arts Technology

The Department of Music and Arts Technology develops musicians seeking to become tomorrow’s technology and cultural leaders, those who will shape the course of music in Indiana and the world. The department is committed to delivering quality music instruction to undergraduates and graduates at the nation’s premier urban research university. The department is the first in the nation to offer both bachelor of science and master of science degrees in music technology. All of IUPUI’s music faculty members employ technology in their teaching, production, performance and research. In 2006, the department also launched an innovative, research-based Master of Science degree in music therapy.

 About the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI:
The mission of the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI is to be one of the best urban university leaders in the disciplines of engineering and technology recognized locally, nationally and internationally. The school’s goal is to provide students an education that will give them the leverage to be leaders in their communities, industry and society.

IUPUI music and arts technology lecturer does sound for film about World Cup stadium workers

thINDIANAPOLIS — Soccer is serious business in Brazil. Just ask IUPUI Department of Music and Arts Technology lecturer Ricardo Laranja, a native of that nation of 220 million people that is hosting the 2014 World Cup soccer tournament.

That passion for the sport most of the world knows as football spawned stadium construction to help handle the monthlong schedule of games, June 12 to July 13, which led to a documentary film, “Operarios da Bola,” loosely translated as “Blue Collar Players.” Laranja got involved as an audio engineer and composer when producer-director Virna Smith asked him to help complete the documentary.

Smith’s film highlights the desire of all Brazilians to be part of this year’s international festival. Construction workers created 60 male teams and four female teams to take part in a “blue-collar” tournament nicknamed the “Cup Before the Cup.” More than 800 workers participated in the event, out of 3,000 who constructed the Mané Garrincha stadium that will host the World Cup contests.

The movie is in Brazilian theaters nationwide and will show for 60 days. Several TV stations are negotiating to air the movie, including ESPN Brasil and Globo, the biggest network TV channel in Brazil. “Operarios da Bola” has been recently accepted to be shown at a film festival in Los Angeles in September.

For Laranja, it was a great opportunity to work on the documentary. He has refined Smith’s movie several times in recent weeks, tweaking the sound to fit his own standards of musical and sound perfection.

“I am so excited to be part of this historic project,” he said. “I believes it captures the passion and love for soccer for the Brazilian people. Brazil lives soccer, basically. It’s a religion.”

It also excites Laranja’s imagination.

“To us, the World Cup is a once-in-a-lifetime thing,” he said. Even he admits being caught up in the emotion of the games. “I’m actually going (to Brazil) on June 17, and I don’t even have a ticket!”

The music technology lecturer also was able to use the project to create learning opportunities for several Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis engineering and technology students, including juniors Raul Padro, Cale Forbes and Keith Ray.

Padro is a 59-year-old returning student who “performed all of the percussion on a song I composed and produced as part of the soundtrack for the movie,” Laranja said. “Many in Indianapolis consider Raul the best percussionist in town.”

Forbes and Ray provided sound design for the movie.

Laranja is well-acquainted with Smith, the filmmaker behind “Operarios da Bola.” He worked with her on a TV talk show called “Homem Total” (“Complete Man”), which aired in 42 countries in 2008, and was the chief audio engineer, sound designer and composer on Smith’s 2013 movie “O Encontro Marcado.”

The “Cup Before the Cup” caught the attention of the people of Brazil in part because of the opportunity of the tourney champion to compete against an all-star team led by former professional soccer star Ronaldo. The Brazilian legend was inspired by the project enough to take part.

Tournament organizers also hosted a canned food drive and a fundraiser during the stadium work, a service project that benefited local underprivileged communities, Laranja said.

Classical guitarist Rovshan Mamedkuliev in concert at IUPUI

IUPUI Department of Music and Arts Technology and the Indianapolis Society of the Classical Guitar present world-renowned guitarist Rovshan Mamedkuliev in concert on Thursday, October 3rd at 7:30 PM. The concert will take place in the ICTC Building, Room 152.

Rovshan Mamedkuliev has performed throughout the world and has won numerous awards. He is the winner of the 2012 Guitar Foundation of America Competition, and in 2006 he received a special grant for high achievements in the arts from Russian President Vladimir Putin. Tickets are $20 General Admission/$15 Advanced Purchase/$10 for students and ISCG members.

For more information about the artist, please visit his website.

IUPUI Music Academy turns children into composers

Don’t tell the youngsters sitting in front of large computer monitors with earphones clamped to their ears that they are engaged in something serious like problem solving. They are having too much fun composing music tracks in an IUPUI Music Academy summer class.

The children are creating six 33-bar tracks using the Garage Band software, which allows users to become composers, regardless of their knowledge of music.

“It’s really fun,” said 9-year-old Lilly. Cameron, 11, looked forward to showing his father his latest compositions. “I showed him what I had done (in a previous) class. He was kind of confused, but I helped him.”

The children are among 35 youths from an all-day sports camp at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis who were enrolled in the weeklong Music Academy class, which meets for 90 minutes a day.

The IUPUI Music Academy is an independent community music school, operating under the auspices of the Department of Music and Arts Technology in the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI. It was established in 1996 as an outreach program for the communities surrounding the IUPUI campus.

In addition to engaging with the sports camp youngsters this summer, the Music Academy also worked with 74 TRIO Upward Bound first-generation college-bound students and 35 high school girls from across the country who participated in the School of Engineering and Technology’s Preparing Outstanding Women for Engineering Roles program, sponsored by Rolls-Royce. The classes for the high school students have concluded.

Participants in Preparing Outstanding Women for Engineering Roles are invited to the program after expressing an interest in that field. The weeklong experience includes activities like a trip to the Honda auto plant, where the girls met with female engineers. It also includes sessions devoted to GarageBand.

GarageBand strikes a natural chord with younger people, said E.J. Choe, an assistant professor of music and director of the IUPUI Music Academy. “The Christmas wish list of this generation begins with products whose names begin with the letter ‘I’: iPad, iPhone, iPod.

“This marries an old art form with technology, which lures them into music, whether they play an instrument or not,” she said. “Everyone wants to be a composer, and kids quickly learn how to use the software to do it.”

There is a strong connection between engineering and music, said Terri Talbert-Hatch, assistant dean of student services. “Introducing them to GarageBand is a way to show them that technology can be fun. The name of the GarageBand class may not have the word engineering in it, but it’s all about technology, solving problems and being creative.”