Spring 2023 - CA 347 D100

Live Electronics Lab (3)

Class Number: 7539

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo, We 1:30 PM – 3:20 PM
    GCA 4350, GOLDCORP

  • Prerequisites:

    CA 247 or permission of instructor.



A detailed study of historic and current systems and techniques of live electroacoustic performance, and their applications for creative use. Students will create personal electroacoustic performance systems/stations, working towards a focus upon gestural and expressive performance in both solo, duo, and ensemble situations. May be taken twice for credit. Quantitative.


Live electroacoustic performance. A detailed study of the historic and current systems and techniques, and their applications for actual performance. Students will use software built in MaxMSP, focusing upon musical performance, specifically ensemble interaction. Network performance, interaction strategies, controllers, interface design, and improvisation will all be explored in a practical environment of a laptop ensemble.


  • In-class presentation 10%
  • Ensemble performance (Net4Tet) 20%
  • Solo or Duet Performance (Duet) 20%
  • Final Performance / Ensemble Composition 20%
  • Journal 20%
  • Class participation/Attendance 10%


Grading / Assignments  

In-class presentation, 10%
Due Week 4 (Monday January 23 & Wednesday January 25)
•   In class presentation (approximately 10 minutes) on a topic related to EA performance. Can be based on articles from the following:
•   http://createdigitalmusic.com/
•   http://www.musicofsound.co.nz/blog/ 
•   http://www.sonic-terrain.com/ 
•   http://www.soundplusdesign.com/ 
•   http://acousmata.com/
•   or other blog or academic source.  

Ensemble performance (Net4Tet), 20%      
Due Week 7 (Monday February 13)
•   Create a 3-5 minute work as an ensemble (3-4 performers) using Net4Tet. Can involve improvisation, structured improvisation, or full composition, with or without a graphic/text score.    

Solo or Duet Performance (Duet), 20%           
Due Week 10 (Monday March 13)
•   Create a 3-5 minute solo or duet between acoustic performer and laptop using Duet. This should be a “hands-off” performance, in which your interaction with the software must be via controllers and/or sensors.  

Final Performance / Ensemble Composition, 20%           
Performance Wednesday, April 12
- Studio T  
•   Part 1: Participate in a work for the entire ensemble, created within the group. It could be fully notated, or improvisational; instruments could be networked, or independent. The software does not need to be created originally, and can use commercial software (Logic, Live) or existing Max patches (i.e. Net4Tet, Duet). The grade will be on the based upon both the artistic success of the work (60%) as well as the originality of the design and process (40%).
•   Part 2: Participate in a work for the entire ensemble, created by someone in FPA 447.  

Journal, 20%           
Due after end of classes, Wednesday April 19
•   Create a weekly journal entry discussing your thoughts on the topics raised in the course. The first few weeks will be - most likely - mainly about topics from our seminar discussions and presentations. Later entries should focus upon rehearsal and performance experiences, including thoughts on the software and the processes involved in creating the performances. Final paper should be approximately 2000 words (5-7 pages, double spaced).  

Class Participation / Attendance, 10%  
•   A large portion of this course is centred around group projects, and attendance and participation within the group is essential. As such, attendance will form a portion of your final mark.

While all participants in group projects will initially receive the same grade, the individual mark will be adjusted to reflect group participation.


Students are strongly encouraged to have a laptop computer, ideally no older than five years.



Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html