Workshop Session 1: Friday 4 November 15:30 — 17:00

Introduction to Csound and the Web*

Steven Yi

WebAudio Csound is a library for building browser-based applications using Csound. In this workshop, we will discuss the design and architecture of the system, then go through a series of guided exercises designed to help attendees become familiar with using the library for various use cases. We will cover tooling, modular design, best practices, and workflows to optimize your time working on building applications with Csound and the web. By the end of the workshop, attendees should have a good idea of what is involved with building Csound-based browser applications, how they might incorporate both their existing Csound practice and work into their web projects, as well see how they might integrate browser APIs and technologies for their projects.

Spatial composition and spatial granular synthesis in Csound and blue

Jan Jacob Hofman

Since 2007 I conceived and programmed a composition environment in Csound and blue that combines sound generation, scores and composition, automation of parameters, instruments and effect paths as well as spatialization in one program with a graphical user interface. The outcome of this is a tool to compose spatial music in 3rd order Ambisonic. This tool has been improved and refined over the years and is now equipped with several features for modulation of sound and spatial position. This environment is highly modular, so sound-generating instruments and effects can be plugged in, exchanged and switched on/off by desire. More than that it creates a convincing sonic environment consisting of a spatial global reverb, a local reverb, filtering and attenuation in accordance to distance and early reflections, changing in respect to the position of the sound. Thus also the distance of the sound can be modeled convincingly. As the score generation may be automized by generators like Cmask, Jmask and others also granular synthesis is easily feasible resulting in granular clouds or swarms. This workshop offers a straight walk-through the concept, organization and usage of this tool. It is rather not a hands-on workshop where people can try out things themselves but gives a general overview on the capabilities and how that environment is to be operated.

Workshop Session 2: Saturday 5 November 15:30 — 17:00

Diversifying the Csound Community through multi-cultural collaborations

Alex Hoffman, Labdi Omnes & Bernt Isak Isak Wærstad

This workshop aims at discussing and exploring the artistic possibilities of Csound by actively reaching out to a more diverse community. A rich blend of participants with different cultural perspectives will aid in breaking down cultural biases in Computer Music, both the music and the software, and will help foster new and creative collaborations. We think it’s important that the Csound community as a whole takes part in discussing and reflecting on this topic. How can we involve musicians from diverse cultural backgrounds? What are the most common hurdles in establishing creative partnerships? How can we improve the likelihood of successful outcomes? How can different communities work together? What would be the communities to reach out to? How to reach multi-cultural communities in your local area? These are some of the questions that will be discussed at the workshop. Furthermore, first experiences of collaborations with musicians from Europe and Africa will be reported, such as an ongoing collaboration with Santuri East Africa/SEMA (Santuri Electronic Music Academy), Sim Sima and Goethe Institute in Nairobi, Kenya. That involves artistic collaborations and workshops that provide access to Open Source tools like Csound. A showcase example of three different collaborations between Bernt and Labdi will be shown, including the pop-duo Unganisha, the stage show Mamarina and the artistic research project Co-Creative Spaces. A connected concert presentation where the workshop presenters will showcase artistic results from an ongoing collaboration is foreseen. The workshop is open to participants with or without Csound experience, and participants are invited to either report their past experiences or to discuss ideas for collaborations. Funding: This research was supported by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) under the grant number AR743.

Workshop presenters:
Labdi Ommes (Santuri Alumni, Unganisha;
Bernt Isak Wærstad (Unganisha;
Alex Hofmann (mdw;

Csound for games: roundtable on CsoundUnity

Giovanni Bedetti

CsoundUnity is a fully integrated audio middleware based on the Csound API for the Unity game engine. It offers a multiplatform (Windows, MacOS, Android 64bit, iOS, Oculus) solution for Csound interactive projects, using C# code. It supports most of the Csound API, trying to hide its complexity. It extends Unity's audio API by creating Csound-based AudioSource objects that can interact and exist alongside regular AudioSource objects. With CsoundUnity, games developers have at their fingertips one of the most powerful synthesis systems in existence, but with the current implementation users have to know the Csound language to make the most out of it. Aim of the workshop is showing the details of the current implementation and discuss further developments, mostly towards simplicity of use and making it more accessible for non Csound devs, to achieve a wider audience.

Virtual 'Surround Sound' & Listening with Someone Else's Ears*

Brian Carty

Csound offers a number of ways to move a sound around a listener. Multiple loudspeakers can be used to immerse a listener in a piece of spatially processed audio or a virtual approach using headphones can be adopted. This headphone approach is becoming increasingly relevant in the context of virtual 'surround sound' & mobile phone proliferation. Our outer ears boost frequencies that 'fit'/resonate due to the cavities created by their physiology (parallel walls in a room or the hollow bodies of acoustic instruments behave similarly). Audio filters describing these location-specific resonances are used in headphone/binaural spatial sound. These filters are called Head Related Transfer Functions (HRTFs). As our ears are all slightly different shapes (like fingerprints), HRTFs are individual-specific. Accurate, individual HRTFs are desirable in a commercial and creative context; acquisition of individual HRTFs is an open research question. Csound opcodes for HRTF processing will be introduced in this workshop. Participants will then be invited to audition 2 different sets of HRTFs - listening using 2 different pairs of ears! Advanced topics such as virtual ambisonics will be considered & further reading suggested for those interested. The workshop will conclude with some time for participants to creatively explore HRTF binaural processing.

A binaural piece using techniques discussed - Cloud of Missiles, by Sadhbh Bashford Rance will be available for workshop participants to experience.

*Please bring headphones if you wish to participate in these workshops