Thursday, March 15, 2018

AOM performs at

La Casa Encidida in Madrid, Spain

March 3, 2018

The Avatar Orchestra performed during a networked performance extravaganza at La Casa Encidida in Madrid, Spain. Hosted by AOM member Gema FB Martin, the performance afforded audience members a chance to experience the virtual set, sights and sounds directly through one of our generic extra avatars, which was connected to a computer with very large monitor, and 10 extra sets of headphones for additional listening by others. (See pre-performance set up below).

From the program:

"A day in the life of the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse: Meeting in a networked virtual world as avatars, AOM members design and play new otherworldly virtual instruments while experimenting with identity, perception, telepathy and collectivity. They present the sounds, images and movements from a few of their repertoire works, using custom-designed instruments that determine movement, audio emissions, and the release of particles and textures that give visual indications of sounds made independently by individual players in real time. Combined with their unusual sets and scripted objects, gestures and machines available in Second Life, they create a rich and wildly varying otherworldy experience, perceived in a unique way by each visiting avatar."

Performers for the event:

Cuirec d'Erc (Harald Muenz, Cologne); FredMadison (Gema FB Martín, Spain); Frieda Korda (Frieda Kuterna, Belgium); Groucho Parx (Brenda Hutchinson, USA); Gumnosophistai Nurmi (Leif Inge, Norway); Humming Pera (Tina M Pearson, Canada); Maxxo Klaar (Max D. Well, Germany); Miulew Takahe (Björn Eriksson, Sweden); North Zipper (Norman Lowrey, USA); Paco Mariani (Chris Wittkowsky, Germany); Zonzo Spyker (Viv Corringham, USA).

In addition to AOM members' avatars engaging with the stream of audience members who used the guest avatar, AOM performed variations on pieces from its repertoire:


In Whirled (Trance)formations 
by Norman Lowrey (Madison, USA)
by Bjorn Eriksson (Solleftea, Sweden)
Breathing with PwRHm 
by Tina Pearson (Victoria, Canada)
Helicoptering with PwRHm 
by Leif Inge (Oslo, Norway) & Tina Pearson (Victoria, Canada)
by Viv Corringham (New York, USA / London, UK)

with creations by Harald Muenz, Frieda Kuterna, Leif Inge, and instruments by Andreas Mueller, Norman Lowrey and animations by Tim Rischer, Andreas Mueller and Norman Lowrey.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Still Listening: For Pauline Oliveros 

AOM performs Heart of Tones

Still Listening, In Memory of Pauline Oliveros (1932-2016)

June 1, 2017, McGill University, Montreal, Canada

Pauline Oliveros' The Heart of Tones
performed by the Avatar Orchestra Metaverse
and vocalists Kathy Kennedy, Viv Corringham and Tina Pearson

Pauline Oliveros became a member of AOM shortly after it formed, and continued to be involved in and a champion of its activities until her passing. Oliveros was instrumental in three significant AOM works: Her own The Heart of Tones; the Stelarc collaboration Rotating Brains / Beating Heart; and Vancouver Calling, her multiple reality-ability work made for performance by AOM in Second Life, the Deep Listening AUMI (Adaptive Use Musical Interface) program and live musicians, performed at the Canadian New Music Forum 2012 in Vancouver. As her avatar Free Noyes, Oliveros also welcomed the New Year annually within Norman Lowrey's environment Overnight For Dreaming Avatars in Second Life as part of her partner Ione’s Annual Dream Festival. Oliveros encouraged her students and colleagues to investigate the potential in such networked platforms as a way to expand their listening and explore new contexts and possibilities for their work. Oliveros' belief in the possibilities of connection, of listening beyond the borders of place, culture, ability , language, skill and genre pushed AOM beyond what it thought possible. Her modelling of community, acceptance, love and her tenacity in trying out challenging ideas have become fierce norms of the group.

The Avatar Orchestra Metaverse dedicated this performance of The Heart of Tones with deep gratitude and appreciation to the memory of Free Noyes and Pauline Oliveros.

The Heart of Tones (mixed reality version)

The Heart of Tones was originally commissioned in 1999 by Abbie Conant and her Wired Goddess Project and composed for trombone and two oscillators. Oliveros created an ensemble version of the piece in 2008, adapted for the mixed realities of Second Life and Real Life, combining virtual instruments with live trombones and voices streamed into Second Life, with the result brought into a venue via projection screens and audio system. The premiere of the mixed realities The Heart of Tones took place at Open Space in Victoria BC.

In The Heart of Tones, a tone is minutely explored in the smallest possible increments within a half tone above and below a prescribed pitch, through subtle timbre variations and spatial movements by performers on virtual and physical instruments. This is accomplished with a custom Heart of Tones (HoT) virtual instrument designed within Second Life, in collaboration with Oliveros and the Avatar Orchestra luthier, Andreas Müller. The instrument includes individual controls for volume, duration, frequency and colour spectrum of 95 microtones within the space of a half tone above and below D4 (296Hz). The instrument also includes avatar animations, and exacting choreography performed by the avatars is designed to provide subtle varations and evolutions in the perception of the received sound. The resultant beats, timbre shifts and audio illusions create rhythms, transformations and textures that are precisely mirrored in visual colour spectrum shifts on activated capes worn by the avatar performers. The focus is on listening to the acoustic beat frequencies and the overtones that result from playing tones together that are very very close together in frequency. The musicians decide independently and intuitively on the variations.


Second Life Avatars
Chris Wittkowsky, Regensburg, Germany (Paco Mariani)
Frieda Kuterna, Antwerp, Belgium (Frieda Korda)
Max D. Well, Regensburg, Germany (Maxxo Klaar)
Leif Inge, Oslo, Norway (Gumnosophistai)
Ole-Xin Foss, Oslo, Norway (Ba Na Na)
Gema FB Martín, Madrid, Spain (FredMadison)
Björn Eriksson, Sollefteå, Sweden (Miulew Takahe)
Norman Lowrey, New Jersey, USA (North Zipper) 
Liz Solo, Toronto, Canada
Cathy Fern Lewis, Victoria, BC, Canada (Fernsing)
Viv Corringham, New York, USA (Zonzo Spyker) i
Brenda Hutchinson, San Francisco, CA, USA (Groucho Parx) 
Tina Pearson, Victoria, BC, Canada (Humming Pera)

Kathy Kennedy
Viv Corringham
Tina Pearson

Timekeeper: Brenda Hutchinson
Conductor: Tina Pearson
Second Life Camera Operator: Kevin Gironnay
Second Life Set Design and Construction: 
Tina Pearson, Norman Lowrey, Frieda Kuterna

AOM Performs at Firenze MultiMedia Festival

November 28, 2016, the Avatar Orchestra presented a performance of a few of its repertoire works for the 2016 Diffrazioni Firenze Multi Media Festival

Mixed Realities at 

Ariadne's Phylogenetic Shoelace, Berlin

In Whirled (Trance)Formations

Avatar Orchestra Metaverse performed Norman Lowrey's "In Whirled Trance(Formations)" for the closing ceremony of "Ariadne's Phylogenetic Shoelace," a video/sound installation held in Berlin, Germany, January 24-31, 2015. The show was organized by Ryan Siegan Smith and Ayaka Okutsu.

Video/Machinima Excerpt of the performance from the Second Life perspective.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Avatar Orchestra at Posthuman Corporealities

November 27, 2014, Lisboa, Portugal


Ambient Aomprovisation
With the Fadheit and Pleides HUDs, Second Life gesture sounds, bird sounds and electronic squeaks and Animation HUD In InThisFarNow Animation (made by Norman Lowrey) 
And using the Gazira Babeli gesture sculpture "Come Together

Composition and sounds by Bjorn Eriksson, HUD and animations built by Andreas Mueller

Composition and sounds by Tina Pearson. HUD built by Andreas Mueller. Animation HUD built by Tim Risher.

PwRHm with COPTER Interlude
Composition by Tina Pearson and Leif Inge
Animation HUD built by Norman Lowrey

In Whirled (Trance)formations
Composition and sounds by Norman Lowrey based on his Singing Masks.
All masks, HUDS, animations and set elements built by Norman Lowrey.

Instrument, HUD and Sampanophone animation by Norman Lowrey
All Over animation by Fau Ferdinand

Thursday, September 18, 2014

AOM at the Network Music Festival, Birmingham, UK September 28, 2014

Avatar Orchestra at Network Music Festival

Sunday, September 28, 2014, Birmingham, UK

Works by Björn Eriksson, Tina M Pearson and Norman Lowrey

Ten composers, artists and musicians spread through Europe and North America meet in a networked virtual world. There, together as avatars, they design and play new otherworldly virtual instruments while experimenting with identity, perception, telepathy and collectivity. The instruments determine movement, audio emissions, and the release of particles and textures that give visual indications of sounds made independently by individual players in real time. There is no streaming involved – the performance is created completely within the networked 3-D environment world Second Life.

Bjorn Eriksson's Fragula moves from granulated sine waves, square waves and sawtooth-shaped sounds through arpeggiated synthetic figures into samples of an old harmonium with imprecise playing. Each sound control triggers a specific small or big movement and animation of the avatar, while exploding each avatar’s sound sack into colour.

PwRHm: Breathing the Network Electric by Tina M Pearson uses two sets of sine tones tuned to the harmonic series of the AC currents of North America and Europe. Separated by continents, AC frequencies and instrument sets, the two groups of performers play according to their individual breath rhythms while exploring sonic phenomena effects and the pure just intoned sonic relationships that occur when they meet within the 3-D virtual world. A separate set of instruments built on the processed field recordings of electric motors from each continent gives added possibilities.

In Whirled (Trance) Formations by Norman Lowrey invites performers to transform themselves through Singing Masks as "vehicles of transformation." The result is a spontaneously playful shaping of sound, light, and motion, using virtual mask instruments to connect with alternate realities, modes of cognition, or underlying fabrics of energies.


BlaiseDeLaFrance Voom (Biagio Francia), Agropoli, Italy 
Frieda Korda (Frieda Kuterna), Antwerp, Belgium)
Groucho Parx (Brenda Hutchinson), San Francisco, USA
Gumnosophistai Nurmi (Leif Inge), Oslo, Norway
Humming Pera (Tina M Pearson), Victoria, Canada
Maxxo Klaar (Max D. Well), Regensburg, Germany
Miulew Takahe (Björn Eriksson), Sollefteå, Sweden
North Zipper (Norman Lowrey), New Jersey, USA
Paco Mariani (Chris Wittkowsky), Regensburg, Germany
Zonzo Spyker (Viv Corringham) (New York, USA)

Virtual set by Frieda Kuterna, Liz Solo, Tina Pearson and Norman Lowrey
Virtual Instruments built by Andreas Mueller and Norman Lowrey
Animations by Andreas Mueller, Tim Risher and Norman Lowrey
Performed at Odyssey Art and Performance Simulator in Second Life

Scenes from the Vector Game and Art Convergence Festival

February 23, 2014 

Avatar Orchestra performance 

at Interaccess Video Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Bringing the virtual world to the Interaccess performance space.
Kimberly Koronya, Tina Pearson, Diana Paulsen (camera)
corner set up with 2 screens - 1 showing HUDS and interface

Helicopter / Avatar Duo

Skot Deeming, setting up the video stream into Second Life.

"Fragula", in front of rotating skyscrapers set

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

AOM at Vector Game Art Festival

The Avatar Orchestra Metaverse has been invited to present a live performance at the Vector Game Art Festival in Toronto, Canada on February 23, 2014.

In preparation for this event, the AOM collective's globally networked mind has pulled together ideas from its almost seven years' of working together to create a story that links its soundart and music origins with the virtual possibilities of networked performance art, theatre, games, and breath-guided telematics. 

"For this special performance, debuting at Vector 2014, the AOM’s Humming Pera (aka Tina Pearson) will be conducting the performance live at Interaccess, with seven other members of the Orchestra dialling  in from around the world to perform with virtual helicopters and custom designed audiovisual instruments inside a whimsical virtual environment. This special performance will feature new collaborations created by the Orchestra specifically for the Vector Game Art Festival, and will include a live video stream of the audience on screen within the virtual environment, inviting interaction and awareness between the telematic performers and their spectators.

Team Vector is very excited for this unique performance, which pushes the boundaries of online interaction, the utility of MMOs and our aural perceptions of virtual environments."

Live Performers 

Frieda Korda, aka Frieda Kuterna (Antwerp, Belgium)
Groucho Parx, aka Brenda Hutchinson (Brooklyn & San Francisco, USA)
Gumnosophistai Nurmi, aka Leif Inge (Oslo, Norway)
Humming Pera, aka Tina M. Pearson (Victoria, BC, Canada)
Lizsolo Mathilde, aka Liz Solo (St. John's, Nfld., Canada)
Maxxo Klaar, aka Max D. Well (Regensburg, Germany) 
Miulew Takahe, aka Björn Eriksson (Sollefteå, Sweden)
Paco Mariani, aka Chris Wittkowsky (Regensburg, Germany)

Compositional elements and/or custom instruments by

Miulew Takahe, aka Björn Eriksson (Sollefteå, Sweden) Composition
Humming Pera, aka Tina M. Pearson (Victoria, BC, Canada) Composition, Instruments
Bingo Onomatopoeia, aka Andreas Müller (Regensburg, Germany) Composition, Instruments
North Zipper, aka Norman Lowrey (New Jersey, USA) Composition, Instruments
Gumnosophistai Nurmi, aka Leif Inge (Oslo, Norway) Composition
Frieda Korda, aka Frieda Kuterna (Netherlands) Instruments
Wirxli FlimFalm (late), aka Jeremy Owen Turner (Vancouver, BC, Canada) Composition


Maxxo Klaar, aka Max D. Well (Regensburg, Germany) 
Frieda Korda, aka Frieda Kuterna (Netherlands)
Gumnosophistai Nurmi, aka Leif Inge (Oslo, Norway)
Humming Pera, aka Tina M. Pearson (Victoria, BC, Canada)

The Avatar Orchestra gratefully acknowledges the support of its appearance at the Vektor Game Art Festival through a Canada Council  for the Arts/ le Conceil des arts du Canada travel grant to AOM member Tina Pearson, who will act as the human-avatar interface at the festival. 


Thursday, November 14, 2013

3Bears Arts Show presents AOM

November 19, 2013 at 1 PM SLT

Odyssey Performance and Art Simulator

The 3Bears Foundation For the Interactive Arts exists "to encourage the creation of high-quality art and design, specifically those which interact in some way with the avatars within Second Life."


FRAGULA    (2007)
Composed by Björn Eriksson (aka Miulew Takahe), Sollefteå, Sweden
Instruments an Animations by Andreas Müller (aka Bingo Onomatopoeia), Regensburg, Germany

One of the major ideas about this piece is to have the orchestra to wander from a fragile and fragmented digital synthesized sound texture into a more analog acoustic and not so fragmented sound texture, and then come back to where it all started. This is aurally symbolized in the granulated synthesized sounds of sine waves, square waves and sawtooth shaped sounds.

2 JOHN   (2010)
Composed by Viv Corringham (aka Zonzo Spyker), Minneapolis, USA / London, UK
Instruments and Animations by Norman Lowrey (aka North Zipper), New Jersey, USA

2 John uses fast and slow time scales simultaneously. At the start of the piece we are breathing as slowly as we can and playing sounds -or "scribbling"- as fast as we can. It is dedicated to the late British improviser John Stevens, who wrote a piece "2 Albert" that uses the term "scribbling" for very fast improvising without knowing what sounds you're going to make.

Composed by Andreas Müller (aka Bingo Onomatopoeia), Regensburg, Germany
Instruments and Animations by Andreas Müller (aka Bingo Onomatopoeia), Regensburg, Germany)

This piece uses only samples generated by circuit-bent instrument and homemade oscillators.
Thus, these sounds cannot be assigned to a definite pitch or scale, they seem aleatoric at first glance.
But upon a closer look at the technology of their electronic generation, one quickly realizes that they are not at all: they are created by unambiguous laws of digital logic, following simple yes/no decisions.

Set design by Frieda Kuterna (aka Frieda Korda), Antwerp, Belgium


Miulew Takahe, aka Björn Eriksson (Sollefteå, Sweden)
Zonzo Spyker, aka Viv Corringham (Minneapolis, USA / London, UK)
Humming Pera, aka Tina M. Pearson (Victoria, BC Canada)
Maxxo Klaar, aka Max D. Well (Regensburg, Germany)
Groucho Parx, aka Brenda Hutchinson (Brooklyn & San Francisco, USA)
Paco Mariani, aka Chris Wittkowsky (Regensburg, Germany)
BlaiseDeLaFrance Voom, aka Biago Francia (Agropoli, Italy)
Cajska Carlsson, aka Simon Jones (Liverpool, UK)
Frieda Korda, aka Frieda Kuterna (Antwerp, Belgium)