Artist Statement

I am a performer/composer and researcher combining music with computer science, engineering, dance, and paleontology/biology. I create new musical works and instruments giving participants and audiences glimpses into another’s experience, whether that other is human, dinosaur, or another being. Music plays an essential role across cultures and history bringing people together in social gatherings, rituals, in mourning and celebration, and in reaching people across different cultural and socioeconomic divides. I make works that engage with this capacity for the empathy and social connection that music opens up. I create new ways of making music and listening to foster new empathies and new ways of experiencing and sharing beauty and transcendent states with others.

I research new musical interfaces, computational modeling of vocal mechanisms, dinosaur paleontology, web technology and motion capture systems to make my work. My formal training in computer science and other technical areas allows me to step outside what can be done with software alone and further push the envelope of what has been done before in music. I often explore outside the bounds of my current expertise to acquire new skills to push forward my work. For instance, I studied tango dance performance as well as modern dance and ballet technique for my tango project as well as biology, anatomy, and physics to develop vocal models. I also collaborate with visual artists, industrial designers, paleontologists, and others to realize my interdisciplinary projects.

My work deeply involves the voice, my primary musical instrument. I draw on my experience as a classically trained and experimental vocalist as well my experience singing in rock bands. For instance, many of my works employ my voice as instrument and my dinosaur skull instruments are an extensive study of vocalization. Other works draw upon my experience with dance and movement. I began studying Argentine tango dance after learning tango music on the accordion, and my work accordingly explores dance and movement as a musical experience. My musical materials and inspiration are drawn a variety of sources, including experimental electroacoustic music, non-idiomatic improvisational practices, Argentine tango, accordion-based repertoire, and nature, among others. I develop new performance practices and notations with the new instruments that I create via both collaboration and intensive solo rehearsal.