BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

Barry Truax is a Professor Emeritus in the School of Communication and (formerly) the School for the Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University where he taught courses in acoustic communication and electroacoustic composition, specializing in soundscape composition.

He has worked with the World Soundscape Project, editing its Handbook for Acoustic Ecology, and has published a book Acoustic Communication dealing with all aspects of sound and technology.

As a composer, Truax is best known for his work with the PODX computer music system which he has used for tape solo works and those which combine tape with live performers or computer graphics.

A selection of these pieces may be heard on the recording Sequence of Earlier Heaven, and the Compact Discs Digital Soundscapes, Pacific Rim, Song of Songs, Inside, Islands, and Twin Souls, all on the Cambridge Street Records label, as well as the double CD of the opera Powers of Two and the most recent CDs, Spirit Journies and The Elements and Beyond.

In 1991 his work, Riverrun, was awarded the Magisterium at the International Competition of Electroacoustic Music in Bourges, France, a category open only to electroacoustic composers of 20 or more years experience. He is also the recipient of one of the 1999 Awards for Teaching Excellence at Simon Fraser University.

Following his retirement from SFU (Sept. 2015), he became the Edgard Varèse Guest Professor at the Technical University in Berlin (2015-16), and Guest Composer at the 2016 BEAST Festival in Birmingham, where his multi-channel soundscape compositions have been performed.

Watch a short video interview (FCAT) or a longer video interview done in Poland.
Or the CBC's The Nature of Things program (Nov. 12/15) on Sonic Magic: The Wonder and Science of Sound
(Barry's contribution is included around 16:15, 26:10

Barry is an Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre and a founding member of the Canadian Electroacoustic Community and the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology.

For more information, here's the Globe & Mail's In Person profile from Sept. 1998, Randy Raine-Reusch's 2001 cover article from Musicworks 79, and Jerry Pergolesi's 2010 article from Musicworks 108.

Email: truax@sfu.ca; Skype ID: barrytruax (please email in advance if you want to use this communication link)

A recent high res photo and headshot

Interview (Computer Music Journal, 1994)

You can also read a more recent (and extensive) interview and reviews on the Asymmetry website (posted Feb. 10/09).

Recent Press and Internet articles:

The Vancouver Sun, Nov. 18/10

Jonathan Sterne's blog, Nov. 29/10

Vancouver Computer Music Meeting lecture, Sept. 2009

Candid Photos:




With Paula & Miguel Azguime, Musica Viva, 2003, Coimbra, Portugal

 
Barry's octophonic concert at Musica Viva, Coimbra, Portugal, Sept. /03,
with Miguel Azguime & Carlos Augusto



Giving a master class at Musica Viva, Coimbra, Portugal, Sept. /03
(photos by Jaime Reis)



l. to r.: Takayuki Rai, Paul Rudy, Simon Emmerson, Barry, Wayne Siegel, at Coimbra, 2003


Performing
The Shaman Ascending in the magnificent Palais Jacques Coeur,
Bourges, France, June 2005

Barry's seminar on The Shaman Ascending (sculpture in background),
Bourges festival, June 2005, photos courtesy IMEB

Recording a new piano album

Barry with "Dan Patch", Nov. 2005

Carrying the mace at SFU convocation, June 2006
(photo by Florence Chee)

Barry with Simon Emmerson, Bourges Festival, 2007
(photo by Judy Klein)

With members of the Academy of Electroacoustic Music, Bourges, June 2005



With Sammy Chien at an SFU electroacoustic concert, April/08


With Alessandro Cipriani at ICMC 2008, Belfast



Guenther & Barry at SFU Convocation June 2009 on the occasion of Guenther's Ph.D.

&

posing with President Stevenson & Chancellor Louie (below)




Lecturing at Sonic Acts 13, Amsterdam, Feb. 2010



After the soundwalk in Barcelona, July/10 (photo by Enric Guaus)


With Lucha Turchet after the soundwalk in Barcelona


Concert space in Helsinki, the "House of Nobility", site of the solo concert, June 11/10


With David Paquette and John Drever in Helsinki, June/10


With the SFU Grad Students (aka the "Acoustic Crew"), July 2011
l. to r. Vincent Andrisani, Jenni Schine, Andrew Czink (seated), Barry, Milena Droumeva, James O'Callaghan, Nathan Clarkson, Adam Basanta (seated)


Poster for retrospective concert, Vitoria, Brazil, September 2011


With a group of former students at the Canadian Music Centre, August 2013
l. to r. Jakob Liljenwall, Jeremy Hartmann, Barry, Brian Garbet, James O'Callaghan, Yota Kobayashi, Alex Mah, Sammy Chien


With David Ikard (Univ. of Oklahoma) at the NAISA Sound Workshop, Toronto, August 2013


With student composers at the SFU Woodwards concert, April 2014
l. to r. Fuji Mooney, Barry, Janice Chow, Maureen Liang, Christine Coulter, Christian Akl, Nathan Marsh


With Marc Battier, at the EMS14 conference, Berlin, June 2014


After a lecture and concert at the University of Wroclaw, Poland with members of the Soundscape Research Group
l. to r. Sławek Wieczorek, Barry, Kamila Staśko-Mazur, Krzysztof Marciniak


During the 8-channel soundscape concert at the Academy of Music, Wroclaw, Poland, June 2014


Barry & Dave Murphy in the Sonic Research Studio, February 2015



At the 2015 SFU Donor Reception, speaking about the Glenfraser Endowed Professorship


André Pinto and Barry in the Sonic Research Studio, April 2015



Teaching in the TU Studio in Berlin, October 2015


After the premiere of The Garden of Sonic Delights at the 2016 BEAST Festival, Birmingham



... and from the scrapbooks

Barry getting an early start in electroacoustics, ca. 1949
(probably communicating with Pierre Schaeffer about musique concrete)

With his first car, a 1957 Mercedes 220S, ca. 1976


At the console of the quad mixing studio, Institute of Sonology, ca. 1973



Working on the score for She, A Solo in an attic room in Utrecht, 1973



The graphic score for She, A Solo "drying", Utrecht 1973
 
Working on a PDP-15 at the Institute of Sonology, 1973, on the POD system


Working on a Hewlett Packard system, SFU, ca. 1978


In the Sonic Research Studio, SFU, ca. 1977


Performing in the Palais Jacques Coeur, Bourges, ca. 1979


Performing in the Palais Jacques Coeur, Bourges, ca. 1983


In front of the hotel in Bourges during the work on The Blind Man at the GMEB, 1979


Working on the score for Trigon, ca. 1975



With Barbara Pentland on the occasion of her honorary Ph.D., SFU, 1985


The launch of Cambridge Street Records, 1985, with "Bailey"


Noonhour quadraphonic concert in the Academic Quadrangle, SFU, during ICMC 85


Philippe Ménard at the ICMC 1985 noonhour concert


Noonhour quadraphonic concert in the Academic Quadrangle, SFU, during ICMC 85 where Solar Ellipse was played



With Italian friends at ICMC 1982, Venice. Left to right, Giorgio Nottoli, Eugenio Giordani, Barry, Luigi Ceccarelli, Giovanni de Poli, Walter Branchi


With Alain Savouret in Bourges, 1985


With Eugenio Giordani, Amelia, Italy, Music and Complexity seminar, 1988


With Rodney Sharman, CMC 10th anniversary gala, Dec. 1987


Lecturing at the Music and Complexity seminars, Amelia, Italy, August 1988



With Susan Frykberg & Franco Sbacco, Sonic Research Studio, 1989


With Curtis Roads & Otto Laske, Cambridge, MA, 1989


At the 20th Anniversary Symposium of Interface, The Hague, Sept. 1991. Left to right, Barry, Charles Ames, Jean-Claude Risset, Marc Leman


In the Sonic Research Studio, SFU, ca. 1996


With Peter Manning, at Brandywine Falls, BC, 1993



With Hans Ulrich Werner, Tuning of the World Conference, Banff, 1993


With Powers of Two: The Artist cast at the premiere in Banff, ICMC 95 (l. to r.: Marcel van Neer, Barry, Thecla Schiphorst, David Garfinkle)


Rehearsing Bamboo, Silk and Stone, ICMC 96, Hong Kong


With R. Murray Schafer on the occasion of his Honorary Doctorate degree from SFU
and the launching of the Vancouver Soundscape double CD, 1997


The Vancouver Soundscape CD launch at the Goethe Institute, Vancouver, June 1996
left to right (back row), Dr. Werner Wolf, Bob MacNevin, Barry, Hans Ulrich Werner, Susan Frykberg;
(front row) Hildegard Westerkamp, Darren Copeland, Claude Schryer, Sabine Breitsameter



Guest Composer at the Conservatory of Music, Catania, Sicily, June 1998


With Ludger Bruemmer, Palais Jacques Coeur, Bourges, 1998


With Carlos Augusto, at the Soundscape Conference, Stockholm, 1998


With Peter Manning, Michael Clarke and a student at Huddersfield, 2000



With Paul Dolden, at home in Vancouver

Guest composer, 9th Annual Electroacoustic Music Festival, University of Florida, Gainesville, April 6-8/00

Barry with James Paul Sain, Gainesville, Florida


home