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2019-20 Agile Seed Funding Recipients

Round 1 (April 2019)

Eric Lewis & Ian Gold (McGill)

  • Project title: "It ain't over till it's over"--Theory of Mind, Social Intelligence and Improvising Machines
  • Abstract: It has proven very difficult to create an improvising machine system that can tell when a collective improvisation is ending. We will test our hypothesis that humans employ theory of mind in determining when an improvisation is ending, and that this involves social intelligence and multi-modal inputs. This project will both suggest further research into theory of mind and musical performance, and the design of improvising machine systems. Our pilot project will examine whether or not visual clues of the sort characteristic of theory of mind are at play when humans determine that an improvisation is ending.
  • Keywords: philosophy, cognitive science, music cognition, improvisational studies, new instrument/machine systems
  • End of project summary report: Lewis-Gold: Agile Seed funding report 2019-20
 
 

Round 2 (October 2019)

Alain Berry, Olivier Robin, Olivier Valentin, Abdelghani Benghanem (Université de Sherbrooke) & Catherine Guastavino (McGill)

  • Project title: Crowdsourcing listening tests? Evaluating the validity of using a polling station in a science exhibition
  • Abstract: The relevance of using polling stations as a tool for crowdsourcing perceptive evaluations of sounds and involving the general public into this process is under consideration. Data concerning different sounds are currently being gathered using a station installed in a travelling exhibition. Over 5000 opinions were already collected and coherent trends are observed in a preliminary analysis between field or laboratory data. The project aims at (1) analyzing the whole dataset, (2) using this proof-of-concept in a grant application and (3) including sounds from other research areas in a similar setup to be installed in a fixed exhibition (2020-2021).
  • Keywords: acoustics, psychoacoustics, listening test, crowdsourcing, sound environment
  • End of project summary report: Berry-Robin-Valentin-Benghanem-Guastavino: Agile Seed funding report 2019-20

Tiago Falk, Raymundo Cassini (INRS-EMT), Bruno Afonso (Insight Data Science) & Ilona Posner (Toronto University)

  • Project title: Real-time measurement of the meditative effectiveness of Argentine Tango
  • Abstract: Argentine Tango has been shown to help psychological and physical health by reducing perceived levels of depression and stress, similar and at times better than meditation. This meditative state has been reported by experienced dancers while dancing, but has yet to be quantified in real-time. With the emergence of mobile electroencephalography (EEG) devices and recent innovations in EEG artifact removal algorithms, however, this quantification may now be possible. In this pilot project, we aim to validate the potential recording of usable EEG data from dancers, prior to proposing a large-scale study to better understand the meditative effectiveness of Argentine Tango.
  • Keywords: meditation, dance, neuroimaging, EEG, Argentine tango
  • End of project summary report: Falk-Cassani-Posner-Afonso: Agile Seed funding report 2019-20

Ichiro Fujinaga, Sylvain Margot & Yaolong Ju (McGill)

  • Project title: Digitizing and translating figured bass into chord labels for Bach chorales in symbolic formats
  • Abstract: Figured bass is an under-researched topic for Bach chorales because (1) no existing symbolic dataset with figured bass is available, and (2) no research has studied the relationship between figured bass and chord labels. The project will first digitize all figured bass found in critical editions, and then develop a heuristic algorithm to translate figured bass into chord labels, which will offer new contrapuntal and harmonic insights on Bach chorales. This project is highly interdisciplinary, where Prof. Ichiro Fujinaga (music technology) will supervise Yaolong Ju (artificial intelligence) and Sylvain Margot (music theory) to ensure the success of this project.
  • Keywords: music technology, artificial intelligence, music theory, musicology
  • End of project summary report: Fujinaga-Ju-Margot: Agile Seed funding report 2019-20

Jason Noble (McGill) & Juan Sebastian Delgado (Foundation Share the Warmth)

  • Project title: Reimagining Davidovsky's "Synchronisms" in the 21st Century
  • Abstract: We will create a companion piece for Mario Davidovsky’s Synchronism No.3 for solo cello and fixed media (1964; Pulitzer Prize, 1971), drawing on Davidovsky’s compositional gestures and textures but utilizing more recent technologies to create timbral affinities between the cello and electronics. In January 2020, we will meet in NYC with Fred Sherry, American cellist and composer who closely collaborated with Davidovsky, to gain deeper insight into Davidovsky’s ideas. We will premiere our piece alongside Synchronism No.3 at a live@CIRMMT concert in 2020. This concert will be a memorial to Davidovsky’s passing in 2019, and his legacy as a composer.
  • Keywords: technology, performance, research-creation, electronics 
  • End of project summary report: