World Premiere of Tod Machover’s city symphony Festival City. Performed by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra at the Usher Hall, part of the Edinburgh International Festival. Recorded on Tuesday 27 August 2013.
Here’s a collection of links for the “Festival City” project:
- New York Times – Duet for Composition and Software
- New York Times – MIT’s Opera of the Future (Photo Essay)
- The Guardian – Tod Machover: how to crowdsource a symphony
- The Guardian – Join us for an interactive improvisation session for Tod Machover’s Festival City project
- WOW 24/7 – 13 stand-out shows at the Edinburgh International Festival
- WOW 24/7 – Festival preview: Tod Machover’s Festival City
- MIT Media Lab – Repertoire Remix: The Sounds of Edinburgh
- Knight Arts – Tod Machover: Creating a symphony in concert with the community
- The Power Player Mag – USA centre stage in Edinburgh International Festival’s global celebration of culture
- European Festivals Association – Sounds of your memory: co-creation of a musical portrait of Edinburgh
- BizJournals – A score for the world’s biggest music fest? There’s an app for that
- The Scotsman – Sounds of Edinburgh to be used in festival symphony
- Festival Bytes – Sounds of your memory: co-creation of a musical portrait of Edinburgh
- Sync Tank – Tod Machover: “A model for us to rethink what creativity is”
BBC TV & RADIO
- Outriders (BBC5 podcast) – Festival City
- Edinburgh’s crowdsourced symphony made with MIT apps
- The Culture Studio with Janice Forsyth
- Classics Unwrapped
REVIEWS OF PREMIERE
- The Herald – EIF Review; Royal Scottish National Orchestra
- The Scotsman – Music review: RSNO: City Noir
- The Edinburgh Guide – EIF 2013: City Noir (Royal Scottish National Orchestra) Review
- The Guardian – RSNO/Oundjian – review
- Bachtrack – Edinburgh International Festival: City Noir with the RSNO, Peter Oundjian and Pinchas Zukerman
RECORDING OF PREMIERE
Last night’s world premiere of “Festival City” went off without a hitch. The Royal Scottish National Orchestra players were on fire, and the acoustics in Usher Hall were excellent. Kudos too to the Edinburgh International Festival audience for their commitment and enthusiasm to new work. Check out this BBC report from the rehearsal, including a video with interviews with Tod Machover and RSNO conductor Peter Oundjian. The entire performance was also recorded and we hope will be broadcast soon. Stay tuned…
Read and watch video here: Edinburgh’s crowdsourced symphony made with MIT apps
How’s your auditory and musical acumen? Test it out with the Cauldron Connector quiz designed by Akito Van Troyer and Tod Machover at the MIT Media Lab. Correctly traverse your way through the sounds of Machover’s “Festival City”, and your name will be placed into a drawing for two free tickets to the lecture/demo (5pm) and premiere (8pm) of the piece at the Edinburgh International Festival’s “City Noir” concert on August 27th!!
Even if you’re nowhere near Edinburgh and won’t be able to attend the concert, you can still play and if you win, we’ll think of some cool alternative prize.
Play the game here.
To compose Festival City, which Machover hopes will bring out the contrasts of the city, Machover first invited people to submit raw material that reminded of them of Edinburgh during festival time. These could be pieces of music, sounds or recorded stories and anecdotes which were submitted by email, uploaded toSoundCloud or recorded on an answering phone. Sounds that particularly stood out for Machover were those of church bells and people talking in the lobbies discussing shows they’d just seen, as well what he describes as an “indie rock band of traffic”, where each of the cars stood out like soloists, rather than just collaborating to a single mass of traffic noise.
Tod is in Edinburgh this week and next, busy fine-tuning and rehearsing “Festival City”, which premieres next Tuesday, August 27th, at the Edinburgh International Festival. Tickets here.
Read the full article: Festival City: Tod Machover on crowdsourcing music with MIT apps for EIF
The M.I.T. Media Lab Opera of the Future group’s work is the subject of a full-page article by Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim in the August 16th issue of the New York Times. It’s an engagingly written piece that covers the history of Tod Machover’s work in music composition and technology, from hyperinstruments to “Death and the Powers” to “Festival City”, including a description of the Cauldron app in action. Accompanying the story is a terrific slide show of photographs by Katherine Taylor. Tod’s newest work, “Festival City”, premieres next week, on August 27th, at the Edinburgh International Festival.
Here’s the article: Duet for Composition and Software
Here’s the slide show.
Last month, composer Tod Machover joined an online audience together with pianist Tae Kim in an experience that fused Web-based interaction with a live piano performance. This demo centered on the Cauldron app built at the Media Lab for the “Festival City” project commissioned by the Edinburgh International Festival. The app is populated with the sounds of the music most frequently performed over the history of the festival. The pieces are represented by colored circles, and participants online can “stir” the musical brew by positioning their cursors over the circles, which move and grow in response. During this live demo, Tod worked on a second interface to determine how the musical fragments would interact with one another, and piano virtuoso Tae Kim used the evolving images as a “score” to improvise music. His improvisations in turn will inform the final piece, which premieres on August 27th. Watch the demo in the video above.
This Guardian article provides a great description of how the demo works: Join us for an interactive improvisation session for Tod Machover’s Festival City project
This guide from The Scotsman and WOW247 highlights its top 13 picks from the Edinburgh International Festival. “Festival City” gets a nice shout out…
13 stand-out shows at the Edinburgh International Festival
The RSNO perform a suite of works inspired by “film noir, big-band jazz and the movies of David Lynch”, which includes a world premiere of Tod Machover‘s Festival City – an attempt to gather “sonic memories of Edinburgh” to help shape an orchestral work, between now and August.
Read the full article here.
Special Interactive Improvisation Session for
Tod Machover’s Festival City
Commissioned by the Edinburgh International Festival
Created at the MIT Media Lab
Hosted by The Guardian
Composer Tod Machover is in the midst of creating a “collaborative symphony” called Festival City, to be premiered on August 27th at the Edinburgh International Festival. The work is a sonic portrait of Edinburgh – the city and the festival – created with input from Edinburgh lovers, both residents and visitors. For the past few months, Tod has been soliciting audio samples of – and stories about – the city, as well as providing tools created by his team at the MIT Media Lab that allow everyone to help shape the composition.
Now is your chance to participate in a one-time-only special event to further shape Festival City. From 2-3pm Boston time (7-8pm UK time) on Tuesday, July 9th, you will be able to help select musical elements from the repertoire of pieces performed at the EIF since its inception in 1947. Here’s how it works: Continue reading Join our interactive live-stream event Tuesday, July 9th!!