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PhD student explores ways deaf musicians can create music

25 Jan 2016

A PhD candidate at Birmingham City University is developing new ways for deaf musicians to create electronic music.

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Wanting to provide deaf individuals with systems that broaden creators' horizons away from percussive, acoustic ways of creating music, music technology PhD student Richard Burn is currently creating a system that will visually display the nuances of music, thus greatly improving the degree that deaf musicians can hone their musical creations.

Conducting interviews and surveys with deaf musicians, Burn will first find out what their needs are, before moving on to developing systems that deliver an enhanced level of feedback. Finally, the systems will be tested and honed.

Speaking to Birmingham City University, Burn said: "Traditional waveform representations are unable to truly describe what music actually sounds like. There are much more subtle characteristics of sound that may be better represented visually, for example, by using simple shapes and symbols to describe harmonic content.

"My proposed system will hopefully give deaf players of electronic instruments the same sort of experience as that enjoyed by deaf players of acoustic instruments."

Sources

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/11/151118101815.htm

http://www.bcu.ac.uk/news-events/news/music-making-for-the-deaf

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