• Rory Conder

Sound Design for Interactive Soundscapes

Updated: Feb 21

12th November

John Cage,

John Milton Cage Jr. (September 5, 1912 – August 12, 1992) was an American composer, music theorist, artist, and philosopher. A pioneer of indeterminacy in music, electroacoustic music, and non-standard use of musical instruments, Cage was one of the leading figures of the post-war avant-garde. Critics have lauded him as one of the most influential composers of the 20th century. He was also instrumental in the development of modern dance, mostly through his association with choreographer Merce Cunningham, who was also Cage's romantic partner for most of their lives

"Music is not a time art but a space art, different sounds coming from different places and lasting, producing a sculpture which is sonorous and which remains."

"Sometimes people speak of inner listening, or the meaning of sound , I talk about the meaning of sounds, they need not be anything but what they are."

"There are two things that don't have to mean anything, one is music, the other is laughter." - Emmanual Kant

Harry Partch

Harry Partch (June 24, 1901 – September 3, 1974) was an American composer, music theorist, and creator of musical instruments. He composed using scales of unequal intervals in just intonation, and was one of the first 20th-century composers in the West to work systematically with microtonal scales. He built custom-made instruments in these tunings on which to play his compositions, and described his theory and practice in his book Genesis of a Music (1947).

Tan Dun

Tan Dun (born 18 August 1957) is a Chinese contemporary classical composer, pianist, viola d'amore player and conductor, most widely known for his scores for the movies Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Hero, as well as composing music for the medal ceremonies at the 2008 Beijing Olympics who learned composition in China and the United States of America. His works often incorporate audiovisual elements; use instruments constructed from organic materials, such as paper, water, and stone; and are often inspired by traditional Chinese theatrical and ritual performance. In 2013, he was named a UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador. He has won numerous awards for his works, including an Academy Award, a Grammy Award and a BAFTA award.

The human cognition of Sound relies on three essential sound properties. These must be present in order for a sound to exist and be perceived as such:

  • Production - a vibrating body, or mass, usually through the mechanical transference of energy: source of a sound


  • Propagation - the medium through which sound waves travel


  • Perception - a receptor of sound, such as the human ear or a microphone


The range of human hearing is rathe large in the context of music, however, non-musical sounds create a far greater spectrum of frequencies than do the fundamental tones of music. Music occupies about one fourth of the range of hearing, whereas the noise of your surroundings occupy the entire range of hearing. The fundamental tone in music is that which you hear most prominently when an instrument is played: the actual core pitch coming from the instrument. It occupies about 50% of the total sound heard. Knowing that the range of hearing is 20Hz - 20kHz, it may not seem like a large span of frequencies to live in. Let me put all of this intro some kind of perspective. The frequency of the highest note on a. The highest note on a piano is approximately 4186 Hz. The lowest is approximately 27.50Hz. Below is a table of all the instruments in an orchestra and their corresponding frequency responses.

9 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All