binaural

http://empac.rpi.edu

EMPAC’s Spatial Audio Summer Workshop is a first-of-its-kind international gathering of composers and programmers focused on 3D immersive audio technologies such as Wave Field Synthesis (WFS) and High-Order Ambisonics. The sonic equivalent of 3D cinema, these new systems allow the composer to place and move virtual sounds through and around the physical listening space.

In 2016, EMPAC built one of the world’s most extensive and precise Wave Field systems, consisting of over 500 tiny speakers.

While many electronic musicians are currently interested in the promise of this new technology, some speculate that these systems could become prevalent in theaters, cinemas, home entertainment systems, and with virtual reality platforms. The public is invited to attend performances using these systems on July 10 and 13. 

To tell us more - Todd Vos is EMPAC’s lead audio engineer and spearheaded the construction of EMPAC’s new Wave Field Synthesis array. Argeo Ascani is EMPAC’s curator of music and has begun working with an international roster of composers to begin developing new content for the WFS system. 

Simon McBurney in The Encounter
Robbie Jack

The Encounter - conceived of, directed by, and starring, Simon McBurney is currently running at the Golden Theater in New York City. McBurney is a multi-Olivier Award-winning, Tony and SAG Award-nominated actor, writer, director and one of Europe’s most original theater makers. He is co-founder and artistic director of Complicite.

The one-man play tells the true story of National Geographic photographer Loren McIntyre in 1969 - lost in Brazil as he encounters the Mayoruna - a remote people whose ancient traditions are uninfluenced by the western world. In The Encounter, McBurney also shares the story of the creation of this unique piece of theater.

Molding and stretching the classic artform of storytelling, McBurney and The Encounter team use specific and immersive binaural audio technology and sound design. Each member of the audience wears headphones which create an experience that uses their ears to trick their brain into telling their body and comprehension that events are happening that - in reality - aren’t; a voice from over your shoulder, a mosquito in your face, a fire nearby, a warm breath a little too nearby.