Turns out, doing a performance at Klang 2015 in Durham was a ‘piece of cake’ compared to the Sound Kitchen 2015 performance, FLO team flew out to do a few weeks later, as part of PQ2015 in Prague. Long story short …
Testing Day 1: Butt software does not recognise Alesis iO2 audio interface … erm … whaaaa?!?!? Shelly tried to ‘persuade’ Butt to ‘play nicely’ by nudging some settings through the terminal without success, so around 10 o’clock in the evening we started pinging messages to find out if anyone had an audio interface we could borrow.
Testing Day 2: 6.34 am, things started to look more promising when Karen Lauke (an amazing sound artist and curator of Sound Kitchen 2015) texted back saying we can use her Edirol FA-66. Phew, what a relief! Shelly tested it with her Butt settings whilst Nela ventured out to find an Apple store, buy the Firewire 800 to Thunderbolt adapter (to connect the new interface to her MacBook Pro retina) and do some soundscape recordings of Prague along the way to use in the performance. Testing the network went ok, we watched some awesome performances at Sound Kitchen whilst Shelly tinkered with adding more functionality to her SuperCollider patch so we can hear the processed cello in the speakers as well as sending it out via IceCast. On the way back to the apartment, we stopped off at Havelská Koruna to have some nice traditional Czech food for dinner at before continuing testing the new interface with Magda’s live cello input (turns out the beauty parlour underneath the apartment closed early, hence no complaints from the residents :-).
Testing Day 3: FLO team arrived at Národní divadlo (Sound Kitchen 2015 venue) at 8.25. We plugged everything in to test the multi-chanel set-up and audio streaming than around 8.40 Shelly’s laptop broke down (you know, black screen and all that jazz! Cue in Joe Pino (an amazing sound designer and the head of OISTAT Sound Design Group) with SuperCollider and PD already installed on his laptop (he’s good that way!) and the longest 6 hours in the history (of remote networked performance), during which Shelly had to reinstall all the bits she needed for her SuperCollider set-up to work on Joe’s computer together with all the rest of the audio streaming software. Whilst this was going on at the side of the main stage, Nela made some more audio recordings to use in performance and Magda made sure Shelly has a steady supply of food and beverage to keep her going 🙂 Around 17.05, FLO set-up was ready to be rolled out on the d&b equipment trunk to the front of the stage (unplugging stuff to set-up properly was a definite no-no at this point, as was to get another screen hooked up to project IRC channel!) and with a quick speakers + cello mic test (done by the wonderfully resourceful Robin Whittaker, who spent 3 days helping everyone get their set-ups going as well as demonstrating the amazing TiMax!) we were ready to go!
The performance had to be cut to 15 minutes so we can do a quick get-out (and allow Národní divadlo tech team to prepare the space for the evening event), few of the ladies could not join us remotely due to the 6 hours delay and the intermittent SuperCollider network drop-out created some interesting (if not worrying) spatialised effects at the end of the performance, but regardless of all this, the audience seemed to enjoy the performance giving us a big round of applause at the end!
Shelly had to fly off to Glasgow for a conference straight after the performance so couldn’t join us (and the rest of the Sound Kitchen team) for a nice glass of unfiltered dark beer followed by the ‘best pizza in town’ (at Pizzeria Kmotra), but we will rectify this next time the three of us are at the same georgaphic location 🙂
A HUGE THANK YOU to our remote collaborators who waited patiently to join us after a 6 hours delay, amazingly calm and super resourceful Sound Kitchen 2015 team (Karen, Joe, Robin, Barbora, Patrick and Brad), enthusiastic PQ2015 volunteers and the inspirational Sound Kitchen 2015 performers!
This is the best gig in town! Roll on Sound Kitchen 2019!
Two down, more to go!
Photos say it all!