"Composing with Sculptural Sound Phenomena in Virtual Auditory Environments" - Quadraphonic, Octaphonic, 3D-Audio, Wavefield Synthesis (WFS), IKO beamforming loudspeaker, Ambisonics, HOA up to 7th order


Instructors: Gerriet K. Sharma and Frank Schultz


Covered Topics:


• Artistic and technical concepts of spatialized computer music history

• Introduction to spatial audio technologies (WFS, VBAP, HOA, IKO)

• Introduction to the compositional process with the electroacoustic instrument IKO

• Spatial composition, and aspects of sculpturality and instrumentality in 3D audio




• Theoretical and practical skills for composing sculptural sound phenomena in different loudspeaker environments

• Elaborating skills of independent working with the binaurally virtualized IKO (vIKO)


• Documented and commented literature catalogue


The Masterclass will take place at HAW Hamburg's Immersive Audio and WFS Labs.

In electronic music and computer music space as  compositional dimension was mainly examined by the use of multi-channel loudspeaker systems arranged around the audience producing an acoustic hull.The master class introduces an aesthetic practice that composes space by understanding “it” as a prerequisite for the perception of sonic-plastic material - therefore exploring different, complex performance situations and environments from an artistic point of view.


In the cause of the master class electro-acoustic sound phenomena - so-called plastic sound objects - that appear within certain sound (re-)production systems shall be examined in respect to their acoustical principles as well as their artistic potential for contemporary “spatial practices”. As an acoustical tool and musical instrument the icosahedral loudspeaker (IKO by IEM and sonible) will be utilized. In comparison to other space-sound-reproduction systems like Quadrophony, Wave-Field-Synthesis and Higher Order Ambisonics and the discussion of selected media-specific compositions the question will be raised whether a “Shared Perceptual Space” can be described, wherein the perceptions of composers, scientists, engineers and audiences might overlap.Therefore, participants will be able to compare state-of-the-art sound projection systems by means of exemplary works and their own experiments - conceptionally and aesthetically.The master class is conveying an overview to existing terminologies and their use in sound art, musicology and acoustics. Participants will have the opportunity to realize own sound experiments with the HOA and the IKO. For the latter the binaural virtualization IKO (vIKO),  i.e. an auralization of different spatial performance situations using binaural synthesis will be introduced.




Frank Schultz

received M.Sc. from TU Berlin and Dr.-Ing. from the university of Rostock, in 2011 and 2016, respectively. Within postdoctoral research he works with the Audio Communication Group at TU Berlin and the Institute of Electronic Music and Acoustics in Graz. From 2003-2007 he worked at Bosch Communications Systems and from 2016-2018 at sonible GmbH in audio & acoustics R&D. He is highly experienced in spatialization techniques using headphones and loudspeaker arrays. Besides technical and perceptual optimization of large-scale sound reinforcement, he is mainly interested in artistic and empirical exploration of sculptural sound phenomena using 3D audio systems.

Gerriet K. Sharma

Composer and sound artist, studied Media Art at KHM Cologne and Composition/Computer music at the University of Music and Performing Arts Graz (KUG). In 2016 he completed his doctorate at the scientific-artistic doctoral school Graz. His thesis is titled “Composing Sculptural Sound Phenomena in Computer Music”. Within the last 15 years he was deeply involved in spatialization of electroacoustic compositions in Ambisonics and Wave-Field Synthesis. The focus of his work lays on the theoretical and practical examination of spatial concepts as “Spatial Practices”.

He is senior researcher within the three year artistic research project “Orchestrating Space by Icosahedral Loudspeaker” (OSIL) funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF). In WS 2017/18 he was appointed Edgar Varèse guest professor (DAAD) at TU Berlin.

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4th of June 2018 12am - 7th of June 2018 1pm

Pre-Conference 4-day Masterclass