Posted on 14 Jul 2017 in

Could this be you?

Attention SCA Students!

The School for the Contemporary Arts within the Faculty of Communication, Art, and Technology (FCAT) is looking for a SCA Student Liaison to work closely with FCAT staff to communicate information and build a sense of community among the different disciplines; support current students, and oversee faculty–to-student communications and a SCA Recruitment Ambassador to work closely with FCAT staff to assist recruitment efforts, support prospective students, and positively represent SCA on all campuses.

For more information, follow these links: SCA Student Liaison & SCA Recruitment Ambassador.

Posted on 14 Jul 2017 in

Musebots do it better?

Leading up to the Play Nice: Music by Humans & Intelligent Machines event on Friday, July 28 at the Gold Saucer Studio organized by the Sawdust Collector, Barbara Adler, who's not only a member of Sawdust Collector but also a musician, poet, storyteller, SCA MFA grad, and indeed one of the players for the event (accordion!), has started to blog a little about the show. The first entry presents "5 questions" to "Chief Musebot Evangelist" and SCA professor, Arne Eigenfeldt. Read the whole exchange here. Make sure to come back as Adler has promised other interviews to come. And also don't forget to explore the rest of the site for more info about the Musebots and their designers and the other players and performers for the event. For more information about Musebots and the idea of Musical Metacreation and to hear some musical examples, check out the Musical Metacreation site.

Posted on 29 Jun 2017 in

Musical Metacreation (MuMe) Workshop

The SCA's Arne Eigenfeldt recently returned from Atlanta, Georgia. He and recent SCA MFA graduate student Paul Paroczai presented a paper on Paul's graduating work, vorbei – a piece of generative music software – at the Musical Metacreation (MuMe) Workshop held at Georgia Tech.

Along with Philippe Pasquier, who is Assistant Professor in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology at SFU, and longtime collaborator Ollie Bown (University of New South Wales), Eigenfeldt was co-chair of the workshop, which aimed to endow machines with creative behaviour. He also was a co-organizor, with Bown, of the MuMe concert, held at the Mammal Gallery in Five Points, Atlanta.

If you'd like to see Eigenfeldt's autonomous music creating 'musebots' in action, he and Paroczai, Matthew Horrigan (SFU MFA Graduate), and Yves Candau (SFU MFA Graduate and current SIAT PhD Candidate) will be participating in Play Nice: Musical Collisions Between Humans & Intelligent Machines on Friday, July 28, at Vancouver's Gold Saucer Studio, presented by Sawdust Collector.

Paul at MuMe workshop

Mammal Gallery exterior

Ollie Bown checking out the Mammal Gallery

Posted on 22 Jun 2017 in

Contemporary Nomads

The SCA's Henry Daniel is developing his ongoing Contemporary Nomads research project into an "evening-length combined installation and live performance," as he describes it, for the coming fall semester. Additionally newsworthy about this event is the participation of guest artists Adam Basanta (Music), Sammy Chien and Shanghan Chien (Media Design), and Alan Storey (Set Design). Adam Basanta, an SCA BFA (composition) grad and visual artist, will also be the SCA Dance area's Iris Garland Visiting Artist in the fall. This 'residencey' is funded by Iris Garland Dance Program Enhancement Fund, which was founded in 2002 in memory of Iris Garland (1935-2002), who was a professor of dance, a choreographer, a dance scholar, and a founding member of the Centre for the Arts, now the School for the Contemporary Arts, at SFU. SCA BFA (film) grad Sammy Chien and his brother Shanghan Chien work together as Chimerik to produce complex video projection installations, most recently for Vancouver's Festival Of Recorded Movement; their work for Contemporary Nomads will be supported by the KRT (Wasitudipuro) Fund. Alan Storey is an active Vancouver-based artist who produces site-responsive interactive works for gallery spaces and site specific public art, such as the ‘Pendulum’ installation in the HSBC Bank on Georgia Street in Vancouver. We'll keep you posted as the project develops. 

Posted on 05 Jun 2017 in

Annie Therrien Boulos

Dean Lastoria, who's in charge of New Students and Retention for the SCA, touches base with a few recent graduates.

Annie Therrien Boulos will be receiving her BFA in Theatre on Friday, June 9th at the Convocation ceremony on Burnaby Mountain. Annie was in the Theatre Performance Stream and was involved in blackbox, clowning, directing projects, and mainstages, but the most important thing that I saw Annie do was deeply care for the School’s community – from being the Theatre Student Union President to never failing to help a new student. I’m glad she is graduating, of course, but we will miss Annie!

Q: You were active in the Theatre Student Union — Can you talk about how important it is?

A: one of the biggest things that i learned at SFU is that i am the one in charge of making any experience what i want it to be. it's not up to my profs, my peers, my family, the world. it's me who has the power to create the world i want to live in. that's a lot of pressure but it's also exciting. i think that the Theatre Student Union is important in this because it allows students to have more of a say in what their school program looks like, in and out of classes. it builds community, offers support, organizes events, and is there to serve. that's a cool thing to have. it also only runs if you get involved in it and help it run- so, future students, do that.

Q: Clowning — important?

A: very important. stand in front of everyone who matters to you and fail. you'll learn some uncomfortable things. nothing is more helpful.

Q: What’s devising? Any good stories?

A: devising is being in a room with a bunch of people and making some things. The best advice that i was ever given:

1) follow your pleasure.
2) practice deep listening (i'm still working on this one). 
3) just do the weird things and see where it goes.

i have a ton of memories of the various ways we used food in our black box devising projects – from covering each other in cold cuts and other meat products, to pre-chewing trail mix for certain images we wanted to make, to mushing bananas into the wall...

Q: What is next?

A: well, i feel the need to do something completely different, so i'm going to spend some months working on a goat farm in Norway. 

Posted on 30 May 2017 in

Congratulations, Vanessa Goodman

Vanessa Goodman, who is an SCA BFA Dance graduate and the artistic director and choreographer of the Vancouver-based dance company Action at a Distance, has been selected to participate in the Yulanda M. Faris Choreographers Program, along with Daina Ashbee and Justine A. Chambers. Vancouver's Dance Centre describe the program, which they coordinate, as "an initiative designed to mentor and support choreographers who are ready to make a significant leap forward in their work, empowering artists and providing them with the tools to position their careers in a national and international context, through exchanges, networking opportunities, mentoring and professional skills development." Congratulations, Vanessa!

To find out more about Vanessa Goodman and her work with Action at a Distance, the Yulanda M. Faris Choreographers Program, the Dance Centre, and the other dancers, please click the links embedded above.

Vanessa Goodman and Action at a Distance
SFU Woodward's Developmental Residency Program

Posted on 29 May 2017 in

Congratulations, Adam Basanta

SCA BFA (music composition) graduate Adam Basanta has been awarded the Aesthetica Art Prize Main Prize of £5,000 by the British art and culture magazine Aesthetica. Basanta's winning work is his 2016 sound installation, Curtain (white), which features patterns of white noise playing back across a three-meter long array or 'curtain' of Apple EarPods headphones. Congratulations, Adam!

Visit Adam's website for more about him and his work.

Posted on 26 May 2017 in

Congratulations, Remy Siu

SCA BFA graduate Remy Siu has been selected as one of two composers for the first Carrefour Composers Residency, which is organized in partnership by the Canada Council and the National Arts Centre.

As well as his BFA (Hons) from the SCA in the Music Area, Remy is also currently the Artist-in-Residence for the Push International Performing Arts Festival, the Co-Artistic Director of Hong Kong Exile, and the Co-Director and Manager at the Gold Saucer Studio.

Click here for more information about Remy and his work.


Here's the official press release from the Canada Council and the National Arts Centre:

For composers, the opportunity to work with a great orchestra can be life changing. That’s why, in January, the Canada Council for the Arts and the National Arts Centre (NAC) launched a call for applications for Carrefour, a professional development residency for 2 emerging, culturally diverse or Indigenous composers. It’s vital to nurture and mentor talent that will contribute to the long-term aesthetic and cultural diversity of orchestral and chamber music, and this initiative will provide support to new voices on the Canadian music stage.

Following a competitive selection process, we’re proud to announce the first 2 composers to take part in Carrefour.

Ian Cusson, Toronto

Ian Cusson is a composer of art song, opera and orchestral work. Of Métis and French Canadian descent, his work explores the Canadian Indigenous experience, including the history of the Métis people, the hybridity of mixed-racial identity, and the intersection of Western and Indigenous cultures.

Remy Siu, Vancouver

Remy Siu is a composer and new media artist of Chinese descent based in Vancouver. His work involves the construction of automated and variable performance apparatuses that use light, sound, software and the body.
About the residency.

This residency is part of an exciting, new 5-year partnership between the Canada Council and the NAC, which will highlight the national leadership role of both organizations and support professional development in composition for Canadian orchestras.

During their residency, the composers will work with and be mentored by Music Director Alexander Shelley, the NAC Orchestra musicians and administration, and will have access to the NAC's creative production and performance environment.

“I feel very excited by our choices as they offer a real spectrum of compositional styles.” - Alexander Shelley, Music Director, NAC Orchestra

“This is an exciting partnership between the NAC and the Canada Council. Carrefour will have a definite impact on emerging composers, the orchestral community and audiences.” - Simon Brault, CEO and Director, Canada Council for the Arts

Over a 2-year period, Ian and Remy will come to Ottawa 6-8 weeks per season. They will experience the day-to-day life of an orchestra, with access to rehearsals and concerts, as well as Canadian and international guest conductors and composers. In the first year, they will each write a work for chamber ensemble; and in the second year, a work for full orchestra. Congratulations to both!

Learn more about Carrefour.

Posted on 23 May 2017 in

Harbour Centre Public Art Installation

Our friends at SFU Vancouver have put together a nice video introducing a public artwork on part of the hoarding around Harbour Centre, which they note is undergoing "a period of restoration". Steven Hubert, who's a SCA MFA grad and sessional instructor, worked with SCA Visual Art students to develop a new work for the site. As Hubert describes, he and the students challenged the original brief for the project to produce a large-scale painting of abstracted text.


Posted on 08 May 2017 in

Cale Plut’s The Audience of the Singular

Created as part of Cale Plut's MFA thesis work, The Audience of the Singular explores the idea of the player acting as an active participant in the creative musical process. By playing the game, the player shapes and performs a uniquely generated musical score for a virtual audience.

AOTS uses a corpus-based, machine-learning system to generate music which attempts to emulate music from video games of the 1980s and 1990s. The system generates music in real-time to accompany the player's actions.

The player plays the part of the DJ, mixing this generated music to match the whims and wants of the audience. As the player mixes to their audience, the audience becomes more excited and grows.

Download Instructions

Download The Audience of the Singular here

For Mac: Download either the .app file from SFU Vault, or the .zip file from SFU Vault or and extract the .app. Place this file anywhere except the downloads folder on your mac. Then simply run the .app, choose your settings, and enjoy!

For Windows: Download either the .exe file and _Data folder from the SFU Vault, or the .zip file from the SFU Vault or and extract the .exe file and _Data folder into the same place. Then simply run the .exe, choose your settings, and enjoy!

If a security pop-up occurs: Control-click on the app, select “open”, and then select “yes” when prompted.