Birds of North America

Birds of North America was an original play that premiered at the Wagner New Play Festival in the La Jolla Playhouse. It focused on the relationship between a father and daughter who watch birds together ever year; it used this to tell a larger story about the modern world, intimacy, and the environment.  In Spring of 2017, I worked closely with writer Anna Moench and Director Jennifer Chang, to compose the music and sound for Birds of North America.

I aimed to create a warm soundscape that invited the audience into the intimacy of the father and daughter’s relationship. It was important for me that sounds were accurately placed in space and could precisely move across the room; speakers surrounded the room, and this allowed for the sensatation of a flocks of birds to circle the audience before flying off into the distance.  The Audubon Society’s collection of bird recordings allowed me to accurately portray each of the bird’s as the writer wished.

The play was built entirely out of the dialogue between a father and daughter, so I decided to form the soundtrack primarily out of duets between guitars. With that being said, I didn’t want the soundtrack to become two guitars reciting monologues next to each other or one merely becoming a harmony to the other. I really wanted the melodies to form out of the interactions between the guitar parts. I spent the month of May copiously writing and recording the soundtrack, meticulously drafting the songs until they became synonymous with the emotions the writer had imagined.

Linked below is a brief write-up about Birds of North America and the complete soundtrack.
http://theatre.ucsd.edu/season/WNPF2017/Birds.htm

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Birch Aquariam/Scripps Institute of Oceanography

In the spring term of my sophmore year at UCSD, I got the opportunity to work on a project with the Scripps Institute of Oceanography and the Birch Aquariam;

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15 Rasberry-Pi’s Forming a SuperComputer Cluster

the goal was to work with team to build a super computer that would analyze large files of data from Scripps and develop it into various artistic and digestible forms that could be presented as an exhibit at the Birch Aquariam.

Over the course of the 10 weeks that we worked on the project, I focused on using the program Pure Data to program a flexbile synthesizer that would be able to recieve data from text and csv files and use that to produce musical notes and alter various
parameters. After many iterations, I eventually settled on one that would run through a set progression of 5-note chords, and the first field of data would determine which of those five notes were going to be played or if none of them were. Another field of the data controlled which of the speakers the note would come out of.

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This Pure Data patch deals with cycling through chords and organizing which notes are played

Attached below is a brief example of the sound.

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Humming Birds Don’t Sing for Bees

Humming Birds Don’t Sing for Bees is an independent film that came out the Art Institute of Chicago. I worked closely alongside the director, Allison Ramirez to develop the score while the film was in early stages of production. Over the course of a few months I recorded the songs that became the complete original soundtrack.

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La Jolla Symphony

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As a recording engineer for the University of California San Diego Music Department, my favorite concerts to record are always the La Jolla Symphony. These concerts involve an extensive set up and mic hanging. The excerpts I included below are from the Symphony’s October 2016 concert and include Beethoven’s 5th and Lachrimae by Bryce Dessner. I recorded, edited, and mixed these clips. The rights belong to the UCSD music department.

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Topiary

In the beggining of my sophmore year, I began composing and recording the original sound track for the virtual reality game Topiary. Throughout this process, I worked closely with the director to develop creative strategies for implementing music into the virtual world.
“Topiary Store is a meditative HTC Vive game where the player engages in topiary while independently managing a business to sell them. The main mechanic of the game is the ability to manipulate the appearance of shrubs or trees by pruning through the use of the Vive controllers.”

WinterWorks

WinterWorks is a collection of dance pieces from three esteemed choreographers, which I was a co-sound designer of. The first piece silent/ song by Yolanda Snaith is a beautifully delicate yet hazy dance performance evoking themes of nostalgia, disorientation, and isolation. It’s sound design incorporated ambient sounds, strange nosies, and Schoenberg piano pieces and Operas.

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 7.04.04 PMReal Gone is a very free dance piece that echoes the lyrics of Tom Waits. It had the sparsest sound design of all of the pieces and included field recordings previously gathered by the director, Liam Clancy.

The final piece, un-tongued, is a politically charged dance piece that passionately protests against oppression in the modern era. It expresses these ideas through evocative sound design and emotional visuals, including a continuously dripping bag of red rice

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un-tongued

It juxtaposes its sublime visuals with the sounds of latin percussion, sirens, and ominous synthesizers . Creating the sound was a very collaborative process that involved a lot of back on forth drafting to adapt and compliment all of the components of this piece; however it is through all of these interwoven creative components that it is able to drive home such a plea for drastic change and freedom.

Video will be included shortly.
Included below is a brief write up about the performance.
http://www.broadwayworld.com/san-diego/article/UC-San-Diego-to-Present-Three-Part-Dance-Performance-winterWORKS-This-Week-20170315

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