Dark Around the Edges is a collaboration with composer/programmer Todd Winkler and dancer/choreographer Walter Ferrero. It is an early work using David Rokeby's "Very Nervous System" to translate movement into music and sound.
Dark Around the Edges combines theatrical movement with a digital motion tracking system to create music and sound in direct response to physical gestures. The computer generates sounds to reflect the physics and effort of each movement, making a “believable” mapping between the body and the resulting sound.
The work showcases numerous techniques using the Very Nervous System (VNS), a computer SCSI device created by artist David Rokeby, designed to analyze movement within a space using one or two video cameras. Anything moving within a camera's view can be analyzed for location and speed. These two parameters, location and speed, are sent to the computer as the equivalent of MIDI note number and continuous controller values. Thus, space is turned into large MIDI controller, with the movement of a performer triggering individual notes, starting or stopping computer processes, or shaping the timbre of a composition.
In Dark Around the Edges, the VNS information is sent to a Max program, which handles all of the computer processes and outputs MIDI information to a Kurzweil K2500 synthesizer.

For more info see: Motion-Sensing Music
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