Testing, testing, 1, 2, 3, 4 …

Our performances at Klang Festival (Durham University Music Department, 5th June) and Sound Kitchen (PQ2015 24 June) are just around the corner so testing of remote set-ups, instrument pick-ups, Bitwig Studio plug-ins and SuperCollider patches is in full swing! The set-up with UltraGrid software is still a bit temperamental, probably due to all of us having different (older) versions of MacOS (which we are reluctant to upgrade until we have submitted our thesis!) so for Klang and Sound Kitchen we decided to use a somewhat more predictable Icecast. Just to make things a bit more ‘interesting’, Icecast set-up also requires a few other bits of software like JackPilot (aka ‘JackOSX’), QJackCtl, Butt (aka ‘broadcast using this tool’) and VLC (well we all know that one). When they ‘talk nicely’ to each other all is good, but when they don’t, it is useful to have some chocolate and cookies handy, as sorting this might take you 6 hours (as we discovered 2 days ago when we did some testing between London and Warsaw). Now we got that sorted, Shelly will continue working on her fabulous ‘mixing-remote-strams-than-spatialising-in-space’ SuperCollider patch, Magda will dust off her expensive bow (and even more expensive cello!) and use her virtuoso chops to do some ‘improv practice’, whilst Nela continues testing various routing combinations between Bitwig Studio plug-ins so she can process  Magda’s cello input in real-time whilst sending the audio streams through Icecast back to Shelly, so it can be added to the mix and spatialised.

We have some awesome ladies joining us remotely for these two performances (more on this in the next post), so once our set-up is ready, we will do some practice runs and try to (collectively) wrap our heads around the 3.3 second delay which will happen during the performances (and which by the way might increase or decrease depending on the bandwidth provided by the each venue!). I’m thinking forget chocolate and biscuits, I’m gonna have to bake some serious cake to get us through the next phase!

Nela's Bitwig Studio + Icecast set-up
Nela’s Bitwig Studio+Icecast set-up
Shelly's SuperCollider+Icecast set-up
Shelly’s SuperCollider+Icecast set-up
After 4 hours we had to put some lights on whilst Shelly continues to tackle a 'conflicting' versions of Jack in the terminal.
After 4 hours we had to put some lights on so Shelly can continue tackling ‘conflicting’ versions of Jack in terminal
Celebrating by having a 'virtual cocktail' and busting some 'virtual John Travolta' dance moves :-)
Celebrating cracking the icecast set-up at 22.35 by having a ‘virtual cocktail’ (Shelly) and busting some ‘virtual John Travolta’ dance moves (Nela)

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