Writings about digital notation

The Digital Score by Craig Vear

In “The Digital Score” Craig Vear explores various novel digital notation methods, with a broad scope. Screen scores, animated notation, live scores interactivity, algorithmic and also digital notations or score formations that are not necessarily visual. It came out earlier this year and seems like a very big moment for the subject.

He writes about my Kvartett no. 7 in one chapter. It was featured at a concert workshop given by the Ligeti String Quartet at the De Montfort University in Leicester not too long before the book was published. The event was organized by Craig Vear who is a professor there and he asked me a few questions and then sent me a draft of what he had written about my piece. Everything he wrote about my work is spot on and I couldn’t have said it better.

Sonic Writing by Thor Magnusson (or Þórhallur Magnússon)

Also, this book by Thor Magnusson came out recently. This one has a very broad scope. It does have a short chapter on animated notation, where the S.L.Á.T.U.R. collective gets an honorable mention. The cover even features a snapshot of a work by Ryan Ross Smith which uses animated notation. I do not see that the chapter in the book fits my own experiences but I celebrate the fact that the topic is being covered and I certainly don’t speak for everyone. This book is a giant undertaking and full of interesting analyses.

Also, recently, singer María Sól Ingólfsdóttir wrote her B.A. about Einvaldsóður, with emphasis on audio notation, not animated notation per se, but digital notation anyhow. Very interesting account of the methods used in writing for singers in Einvaldsóður and the Whale Choir project in which see led the Reykjavík performance splendidly.

There are now plenty of academic writings and some conferences about the subject of experimental digital notation. This year I have participated in two events relating to the TENOR network one in the Open Circuit Festival in the University of Liverpool and the other was the Tenor conference in Monash University in Melbourne Australia in which I participated remotely. It is amazing how this is popping up everywhere now and seems almost mainstream – at least in Universities. I’ve ran into lots of people doing interesting things in this field that I hadn’t heard about until recently. I hope our methods will be more readily accepted, within the Universities or without.

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