VARIATION PLAYGROUND FOR TERRY RILEY'S In C.
Call for proposals: In this post, we are asked to propose a music education user-experience that we would like to design, test and then build as a final project. We are encouraged to either continue with our midterm prototypes or conceive a new project that can be designed, tested and built.
Practically and collaboratively, we are also encouraged to work in groups: combining ideas into a single project, or otherwise joining forces to further develop a current prototype. Although the in-class discussions on this were thoughtful and enlightening, many of the final groups/projects were undetermined by the end of our last meeting.
There are a number of other compelling prototypes that I hope are developed fully. But similarly, I would like to continue the prototype that I have conceived and prototyped: a Variation Playground for Terry Riley’s In C. I certainly welcome any classmates that are not otherwise committed to a project to collaborate with me as well.
Complements current Variation Playgrounds as assigned: in deliverable 004, we were asked to design an original interface that through variation and remix would ‘introduce’ the Variation Playground applications. A Variation Playground for Terry Riley’s In C, would do just that: as it is more modern, but not out of place with the other VPs. And it can appeal to a wider user-base, both in age and genre interest.
Practicable: practicable means 'able to be done or put into practice successfully.' Based on our in-class discussions and my own play testing of the Variation Playgrounds, it seems that the underlying code for Dvorak's New World Symphony would 'power' a basic working version of In C. Perhaps constrains of time and resources would preclude having regions that highlight the written notation of each phrase. But, even with the piano roll look and function of New World Symphony, a Variation Playground for In C could be a compelling and educational experience. Using midi rather than samples of actual instruments is another way to reduce development time and incorporate existing VP code.
Educational: The concept and interface provide for several potential teachable moments as outlined below:
• highlights an important style, work and composer of 20th Century music,
• introduces important musical concepts such as aleatory, looping, polyrhythms, etc.,
• supports music literacy with highlighted musical notation as regions,
• the interface models current digital audio workstations.
Usable: teacher's guides for the VP could be crafted for general education, music history and instrumental music courses. But introductory materials within the app can also provide historical and educational references as well.
Vetted: This user interface and prototype has already worked through much of the process that would need to begin anew with a different project.