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Article

Anne Beetem Acker

[BCMI]

Technology that allows a person to control a music-related output with commands expressed by brain signals. The output signal can control physical and virtual instruments and composition systems. Therapeutic applications include allowing severely physically disabled persons to participate actively in music-making. A number of methods of detecting and measuring brain activity have been tried; electroencephalography (EEG) has proved to be the most practical. Neural activity generates electric fields that can be detected by EEG electrodes placed on the scalp. The electrodes are placed in an array that allows mapping of neural activity over time. The signals are very weak and must be amplified and broken into frequency bands commonly labeled from low to high as Theta, Delta, Alpha, low Beta, medium Beta, and Gamma.

Three approaches are used for making music with BCMI. The most common approach, ‘direct sonification’, translates the EEG signal directly into sound; ‘musification’ translates the EEG signal by generating musical sequences based on the EEG behavior; ‘control’ detects specific EEG patterns produced by the subject to control music software. Alvin Lucier made the first known efforts at music performance with the EEG in the 1960s with his piece ‘Solo Performer’. He amplified the signals picked up from electrodes on his scalp, relaying them through loudspeakers directly coupled to percussion instruments including gongs, cymbals, tympani, and drums. David Rosenboom systematically studied the detection of human musical experience in EEG signals in the 1970s. A BCMI piano developed by Eduardo Miranda in ...

Article

John M. Geringer

Article

Nalini Ghuman

[Maud Mann, Maud Foulds, Tandra Devi, Swami Omananda Puri, Maud Coote]

(b Cluain Meala (Eng. Clonmel), Tipperary, 4 July 1882; d Douglas, Isle of Man, 6 June 1967). Irish violinist, ethnomusicologist, authority on Indian music, writer, music therapist, and polymath. In 1884 the MacCarthys emigrated to Australia: in 1892 mother and daughter returned to Britain where Maud made her solo violin debut, playing to critical acclaim in Britain, Ireland, and the United States. Over-playing caused painful neuritis and led to a change in direction: she became deeply interested in Indian music. In 1907 she sailed alone to India, beginning her sojourn in Adyar, Chennai where she studied Karnatic classical singing. During journeys of 8,500 km north from Thanjāvūr to Vārānasī and Lahore she learned a variety of music and became proficient in Hindi and Urdu. Meticulous field notes document her pioneering ethnomusicological work.

Late in 1909 MacCarthy returned to London where, for two decades, driven by a commitment to bridging the colonial divide, she presented erudite lecture-recitals of Indian music across Britain and in Paris, singing in several languages and accompanying herself on ...

Article

Ian Mikyska

(b Brno, 21 Feb 1978). Czech composer and therapist. After studies in composition at the Brno Conservatory with Pavel Zemek-Novák, he relocated to Prague, where he studied with Marek Kopelent and Milan Slavický, with whom he also completed his doctoral studies.

His music always contains an element of quieting down, of a gradual focusing. In contrast to other composers working with quietness and stillness, for Pálka, silence is always arrived at; it always stands in contrast to, and is intimately connected with, the spiritual dimension of man, often present directly in his music through the use of both sacred and secular texts.

There is an intense focus on simultaneity and the present moment in his music; materials do not repeat often and are usually clear and legible to the extreme, sometimes as gestures, other times as textures or sustained notes. The spatialization of sound is a frequent concern in his works, almost exclusively composed for specific venues. It was also the topic of his doctoral dissertation....