Article: John Young's 'Three Spaces in Mid-Air' takes 1st place at KLANG!

"DMU professor's music recognised with prestigious prize":

A piece of music composed by a De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) professor has won first prize at a prestigious international competition.

Professor John Young, Professor of Composition, created the work, called Three Spaces in Mid-Air in the research studio of DMU’s MTI2 Institute for Sonic Creativity.

It was awarded first prize in the Klang! International Competition of Electroacoustic Composition 2019, held as part of the annual festival celebrating the sonic arts held in Montpellier, France.

Artists from around the world come together for a series of concerts, installations and conferences exploring the latest developments and thinking in the world of sonic arts. Organisers have more than 60 loudspeakers arranged around the venue to ensure the very best sound quality for performances.

It is the second international first prize for Professor Young in six months, following the success in December of his work Magnetic Resonance at the Prague Musica Nova competition.

Three Spaces in Mid-Air is in three connected movements and explores the compression of musical form.

"The experience of sound is directly physical, even tactile, and electroacoustic music opens up new worlds for the imagination by lifting us out of our daily encounters with sound,” said Professor Young.

“In many ways electroacoustic music naturally lends itself to extended timescales, since it is so often about immersion in the richness and complexity of sound.  In Three Spaces in Mid-Air I wanted to challenge that by conveying reflective and sonically rich atmospheres but within time frames that encourage listeners to engage with the way sounds are shaped in time.

“A good analogy might be in observing the movement of clouds, which can be fast or slow, turbulent or passive. Sounds can be made to act out these qualities of motion and change. The difference is that sound is immaterial, yet it touches us - and that can be a very powerful avenue of expression.”

The KLANG! competition is organised by the Maison des arts sonores, which also promotes concerts and educational initiatives in the sonic arts through partnerships with the Montpellier Conservatoire, the Orchestra of the Opéra National de Montpellier and others.

Two other works from the DMU studios were among the eight finalists for the award, James Andean's Valdrada, recently released on the Montreal empreintes DIGITALes CD label along with Abwesenheit – another work by Professor Young premiered in Austria by the Vienna Acousmonium.

As part of the prize for winning first place, Professor Young will give a solo concert of his work at the 2020 KLANG! Festival in Montpellier.

Judges of the Klang! Festival this year included highly-regarded practitioners including Annette Vane de Gorne, Jonty Harrison, Denis Smalley and Francis Dhomont.

The festival is in partnership with the Opera Orchestra of Montpellier Occitanie, the SCRIME Studio of Creation and Research in Computer Science and Experimental Music of Bordeaux, BEAST Birmingham Electroacoustic Sound Theater, All For Contemporary Music, Ensemble Flashback, Nau Côclea, the festival Manca Nice, Zepplin Festival Barcelona and the Regional Conservatory Montpellier Méditerranée Métropole.

MTI & DMU award Honorary Doctor of Music to Prof. Xiaofu Zhang

Yesterday MTI and DMU awarded an Honorary Doctor of Music to Professor Xiaofu Zhang of the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China’s premier music school:
Professor Zhang has spent the past 40 years writing, composing, teaching and researching at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China’s premier music school. His compositions are performed around the world.
He told graduates to seize the opportunities that technology presented to make a difference in the world. He said: “It is a pleasure and an honour to be given this honorary degree from DMU. I think it’s an opportunity to recognise my 40 years’ work in research and teaching but also a reminder for me to work harder. 
“I said to graduates today that they are graduating at the best time. Technology has made the world smaller and it brings many opportunities with it.”
DMU has had a relationship with the conservatory in Beijing for 15 years through close links with the Music, Technology and Innovation Research Centre, led by Professor Leigh Landy.

MTI postgrad Sam Topley teaching at Goldsmiths

MTI postgrad Sam Topley will be teaching at Goldsmiths, University of London this summer, running a course on sound art and e-textiles at the Creative Computing Summer School:

John Young's 'Three Spaces in Mid-Air' wins 2019 KLANG! competition

'Three Spaces in Mid-Air', a 2017 acousmatic composition by MTI's Professor of Composition John Young, has won the 2019 KLANG! competition for electroacoustic composition:

In addition, James Andean's 'Valdrada' and John Young's 'Abwesenheit' were both included among the competition finalists.

On 'Three Spaces in Mid-Air':

"Form, writes Nicholas Bourriaud, is ‘structural unity imitating a world.’ I have responded to this idea with Three Spaces in Mid-Air, which is designed as a continuous work in three discrete sections. Each explores the idea of spectral space through interaction and coalescence of sonic strata, as three-dimensional objects ‘suspended’ before the listener. The work’s individual sections also address the compression of form, each aiming to embody the atmosphere of a self-contained ‘world’ — evoking implications of direction, tension and release while balancing states of stasis and motion."

MTI activities this month in Mexico

Head of the Institute, Leigh Landy, is in Mexico City this month, for a range of activities including:

- A solo concert and three talks at CMMAS (Mexican Centre for Music & the Sonic Arts), in Morelia:

- A meeting with the Dean of Music and Head of Music Technology at UNAM (the National Autonomous University of Mexico) in Mexico City, to discuss a new collaborative agreement with MTI². UNAM has courses at all levels in Mexico City, as well as postgraduate courses led by CMMAS.

- Co-directing this year's Electroacoustic Music Studies conference at UNAM, Mexico City.
This will include two talks, along with MTI's James Andean, on our planned ‘Sensing Sounds’ project.
The event will also include the launch announcement for EMS20, which will take place at the MTI² in June 2020 - stay tuned for more info!

John Richards in new documentary film 'The Sound is Innocent'

MTI's John Richards is one of the featured artists in the 2019 documentary 'The Sound is Innocent'. You can spot him, and his work with Dirty Electronics, in the film's trailer:

"As if directing a science-fiction film, Johana Ožvold dissects the story of electronic music. From the pioneer sound engineers working behind the Iron Curtain, through the French avant-garde composers, up to the post-modern creators of digital sonic artefacts, the first-time filmmaker summons an abstract landscape that is haunting and yet achingly beautiful. A voice appears from old television screens forgotten in the maze of some futuristic archive where past and future seem to coexist in a complex and multi-layered way. The oblique strategies through which analog equipment and digital recording tactics create new possibilities are observed by the filmmaker with playful affection, like a scientist in his lab among his favorite tools and… toys. A documentary debut that challenges all the preconceived notions about the observational approach and manages to create an exhilarating landscape in which sound becomes and space dissolves itself in tones never heard before. A different kind of space odyssey."

Out now & online: "Perceptual Issues Surrounding the Electroacoustic Music Experience", ed. Sven-Amin Lembke

Out now & online - the latest issue of the journal Organised Sound, guest edited by MTI's Sven-Amin Lembke:

"Perceptual Issues Surrounding the Electroacoustic Music Experience"

Volume 24 - Special Issue 1 - April 2019

Click here to visit the Cambridge Journals page for Organised Sound

Interfaces Festival trailer

Take a look at the trailer for our upcoming Interfaces Festival, which runs from May 29th to June 4th 2019 in Leicester:

The Interfaces Sound Art Festival brings sound art to venues across Leicester’s Cultural Quarter. Presented across the Cultural Quarter in Phoenix Square, The Curve Theatre, LCB depot and The Exchange Bar, the festival includes a diverse range of work that explores and celebrates sound in relation to space, place, image and sculpture.

More info:

Interfaces Festival, May 29th - June 4th

Wednesday May 29th to Tuesday June 4th 2019

The Interfaces Festival brings sound art installations and audiovisual artwork to venues across Leicester’s Cultural Quarter, including Phoenix Leicester, CURVE theatre, Leicester, LCB Depot and The Exchange Bar.

The festival provokes both eye and ear. Exploring ‘visual music’ – the artistic magic that can occur when image is shaped and formed like music – it offers two screenings of audiovisual artwork from around the world and two hands-on workshops from leading artists. Meanwhile, a fantastic range of sound art installations explore and celebrate sound in relation to space, place, image and sculpture.

The festival is organised by Music, Technology & Innovation, De Montfort University within the framework of the EU Interfaces Network Project, with the support of the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. The project focuses on ‘new music for new audiences’, aiming to inspire more people of all ages and demographics to experience contemporary music and sound art.

For the latest details see:
Visual Music:


Workshop: Collaborative Animated Light Graffiti with Urban Projections
Wed May 29, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Mobile light projections from the workshop will be shown in the city, starting around 10:00 pm.
Location: Phoenix Conference Rooms
Price: Free, but space is limited. Online reservation at Phoenix required. Phoenix listing:
In this community workshop, participants will learn how to use special software on iPads to craft collaborative animations with music. A selection of the workshop pieces will then be displayed around Leicester at night with a custom ‘light cycle’ portable high-definition projection system.

Screening: Visible Bits, Audible Bytes
Fri 31 May, 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Location: Phoenix Screen 1
Reservations via Phoenix recommended.
Phoenix listing:
Visible Bits, Audible Bytes shows how artists and musicians from around the world are using new technologies to animate imaginative audiovisual worlds. Going beyond the bounds of traditional narrative, abstract flows of image and sound invite wonder and contemplation.With the support of the EU Interfaces project, Visible Bits, Audible Bytes has commissioned award-winning Montréal video artist and composer Myriam Boucher to premiere a new work at Phoenix as part of the screening.

Installation: Myriam Boucher – Empty Spaces
Fri 31 May, 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm and Sat 1 Jun, 11am – 7pm
Location: Phoenix Screen Room
Phoenix listing:
Myriam Boucher’s Empty Spaces is a video and sound-based installation that acts as a companion or ‘prelude’ to her audiovisual composition by the same name, which will be premiering in this year’s Visible Bits, Audible Bytes. The installation explores the genesis of her project: the village where she grew up – concerning the source of the desire to run away, to escape from reality.

Artist Talks
Fri May 31, 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Location: Phoenix Conference Rooms
A selection of artists involved in the Interfaces Leicester project will discuss their work.

Installation: Sam Underwood – Heed
Fri May 31 – Tue 4 Jun
Time: starting evening of May 31, open all day thereafter
Location: Phoenix
Phoenix listing:
For this installation, sound artist and musical instrument designer Sam Underwood is placing a series of sonic devices in and around Phoenix. A variation on his long-term Sonic Graffiti project, Sam has chosen to reflect on our current divisions. Each piece encourages close listening and quiet reflection as an antidote to the bombast that seems so commonplace at this time.

Screening: Punto y Raya Festival Retrospective
Sat 1 Jun, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Location: Phoenix Screen 2
Reservations via Phoenix recommended
Phoenix listing:
Spain’s Punto y Raya fosters Audiovisual Arts in their purest state: form, colour, motion and sound – no representation. Its mission is to recapture the spirit of Cinéma Pure and Absolute Film formulated by the European avant-garde in the 1920s, consolidating this unique artform lying at the intersection between Art and Media. This screening presentation by festival co-founder Nöel Palazzo offers a review of the festival’s 12-year trajectory, focusing on contemporary works and the many diverse techniques the artists have explored and developed.

Workshop: VJ Workshop with Myriam Boucher
Sat 1 Jun, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Phoenix Conference Rooms
Reservations via Phoenix required
Phoenix listing:
Participants can bring their own laptop computer with the Resolume demo installed, or can use computers provided at the workshop.This workshop is an opportunity to learn VJ technique – the emerging art of live performance of visual projections with music – hands-on from an award-winning artist who is master in both visuals and music production. Montréal-based video and sound artist Myriam Boucher will teach aspects of her approach to live performance with Resolume software, with special attention to questions of how to work with musical structures and to create organic visual textures and transformations.

Installations from DMU Music and Audio Technology
LCB Depot installations start Thu 30 May 1:00 pm
All other installations start Fri 31 May, 1:00 pm
All finish 4 June, 5:00 pm
Curve Theatre:
Peter Batchelor, Contraption
Rob Chafer, Innermost
Danny Ingram, Balloon Bridge
Francesc Marti, Speech 2
John Richards, Death and the Shell
Stewart Worthy, Tungsten Ghost
Exchange Bar:
Donggyu Lee, Window ≠ Wall
LCB Depot:
Davide Baldazzi, Molekules
Bruno Iglesias, Frame of Phase

For more information:
Visual Music: Bret Battey – bbattey[at]
Sound Art Installations: Peter Batchelor – pbatchelor[at]

Open position: Lecturer in Music and Audio Technology

Want to be part of the MTI team? Do you have a background in any of the following: digital signal processing for music; computer music systems for composition; music information retrieval; machine learning for music and sound; music and sound processing; artificial intelligence for music; sound design; audio for gaming; neuroscience of music; sound and music synthesis; music and audio software development?

If so, we encourage you to apply for the position of Lecturer / Senior Lecturer in Music and Audio Technology. Deadline for applications May 20th.

CD launch for James Andean's 'Assemblance(s)', Sheffield, Friday April 26th

The debut cd from MTI's James Andean, 'Assemblance(s)' is being released on the electroacoustic label empreintes DIGITALes, with a launch party at the Sound Junction event at the University of Sheffield, Friday April 26th 2019 at 6pm:

Out next week: 'The Digital Score - Musicianship, Creativity and Innovation'

Next week will see the release of the new Routledge book 'The Digital Score: Musicianship, Creativity and Innovation', by Professor of Digital Performance Craig Vear:

"Digital technology is transforming the musical score as a broad array of innovative score systems have become available to musicians. From attempts to mimic the print score, to animated and graphical scores, to artificial intelligence-based options, digital scoring affects the musical process by opening up new possibilities for dynamic interaction between the performer and the music, changing how we understand the boundaries between composition, score, improvisation and performance. The Digital Score: Musicianship, Creativity and Innovation offers a guide into this new landscape, reflecting on what these changes mean for music-making from both theoretical and applied perspectives.

Drawing on findings from over a decade’s worth of practice-based experimentation in the field, author Craig Vear builds a framework for understanding how digital scores create meaning. He considers the interactions between affect, embodiment and digital scores, offering the first comprehensive and critical consideration of an exciting field with no agreed-upon borders. Featuring insights from interviews with over fifty musicians and composers from across four continents, this book is a valuable resource for music researchers and practitioners alike."

Large-scale Audiovisual Installation by PhD student Asher Arnon Apr 10-12

Asher Arnon
Audio-visual composition and installation
Four screens and thirteen speakers

Perhaps this scheme will enable us to hear more often from each other
A poetic documentary, an ensemble of images and sounds composed as a multi-layered narrative unfolding in time and space. Visual and auditory impressions, collected from eight localities, are assembled into a collage of fleeting moments of transience juxtaposed with longer stretch of reflection and meditation.

PACE 1, DMU, April 10th -12th
The installation will be on view on Wednesday 10.4 - 2pm-7pm, Thursday 11.4 – 12pm-7pm and Friday 12.4 - 10am-2pm. 

Deadline Sunday! Convergence: Complexity and Simplicity - Call for submissions

Convergence: Complexity and Simplicity
An International Conference/Festival of Music, Technology and Ideas, Thursday 12 to Sunday 15 September 2019

Information on the Convergence Conference/Festival of Music, Technology and Ideas at De Montfort University, Leicester UK, is now online at:

Submissions can be made via the site. Deadline for submissions is 31 March.

The theme in 2019 is Complexity and Simplicity and a wide range of paper and music submissions is encouraged.

Convergence aims to bring together many of the diverse strands of music made with new technologies and to celebrate these alongside some traditional practices.  In 2019 we will also be working with the Darbar Fringe Festival to bring high quality traditional and experimental Indian music projects to the conference.

We are delighted that Curtis Roads will be our guest composer - thanks to the support of the US Embassy in London and the British Association of American Studies.

Hope to see you in Leicester!

MTI postgrad Sam Topley @ TEDx

On Wednesday March 27th, MTI postgrad Sam Topley will be speaking at the TEDx Leicester Salon's 'Changes' event:

"Our second speaker for Changes is the indomitable Sam Topley, a musician, maker and community artist from Leicester. She is a doctoral researcher (PhD) at the Music, Technology and Innovation – Institute for Sonic Creativity (MTI2), De Montfort University, where she also lectures in experimental music technology and community arts practice."

About the event:
"What can art and creative practice really do to address inequality, our needs for regeneration and producing positive outcomes for our society’s most vulnerable people? Hear from our inspiring speakers who will share their ideas and experiences in using creativity to change systems, the urban landscape and empower communities."

Interfaces Community Arts Resources Hub

Are you interested in the field of new music and have organized or participated in a project related to this theme? If your answer is “yes”, then you can share your project to this hub and help offer access to new music by a diversity of audiences:

The Interfaces Community Arts Resources Hub is intended to act as an information hub regarding initiatives, in particular around Europe but also well beyond, that focus on offer access to new music by a diversity of audiences not familiar with it. By ‘new music’ what is meant is original innovative works of music, including the sonic arts, which largely reside outside of the commercial sector.

MTI² concert in Brno, Czech Republic, March 31st

A concert dedicated to the composers of the MTI² will be presented as part of the Sonix Series at Divadlo na Orlí, Brno, Czech Republic, on the 31st of March 2019:

Composers whose work will be presented at the concert include Prof. Bret Battey, Dave Holland, Francesc Marti, John Richards, Neal Spowage, and Prof. John Young.

Review of John Young's 'To the Red Sky'

A review of John Young's recent immersive work 'To the Red Sky':

"A gust of electroacoustic sound rotated around the room as if someone was circling the edge of a fishbowl and I was the water within, confined and tormented. I had to put pressure on my feet to remind myself I was just sitting and listening, and that I was in the same place where I had been before I closed my eyes. There were crashes, clatters and clanks rebounding from every corner of the room. The speakers spat at me. I was haunted by harsh whispers, punctured by shots of sound. Then sporadic droplets of high frequencies gave a sense of hope that was soon swallowed by a battle of sharp shots and deep tones.

I felt the paranoia, I felt the interrogation, I felt the anticipation. I was in the trenches."

Leigh Landy appointed Visiting Professor @ Bournemouth University

MTI's Prof. Leigh Landy has just been appointed Visiting Professor at Bournemouth University, working closely with the Music and Audio Technology team there within the Department of Creative Technology.

MTI postgrad Sam Topley wins award in Dubai

MTI postgraduate student Sam Topley has received the 'Winner of the Featured Project' award at the Dubai Maker Faire, which ran from 26th - 28th February.

Sam was invited to participate by the Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation for Distinguished Academic Performance, and presented her latest project, 'Playground', in which large crochet balls make sound and music as they are moved, rolled and jumped on.

Alongside this, Sam ran workshops to craft electronic musical instruments, using e-textiles (electronic textiles) to make musical embroideries and noisy pompoms. These workshops were mostly with local school children, with public & family participants as well.

Bret Battey's 'Estuaries 3' wins 'Best Audiovisual' award @ MADATAC X

'Estuaries 3', an audiovisual work by MTI's Professor of Audiovisual Composition, Bret Battey, has just won the 'Best Audiovisual' award at the MADATAC X:

MADATAC is an international contemporary festival of digital audiovisual & new media art, based in Madrid, Spain:

"Figures of Speech: Oral History as an Agent of Form in Electroacoustic Music"

The article "Figures of Speech: Oral History as an Agent of Form in Electroacoustic Music", by MTI's Professor John Young, was recently published in Leonardo Music Journal:

Leonardo Music Journal
Volume 28 | Volume 28 - December 2018

The article reflects on how the author’s use of oral history recordings as source material in three electroacoustic works suggests ways in which complementary threads of storytelling and recorded memory can be shaped into purposefully directed forms.

'Orbits' by MTI's Pete Batchelor & Mike Blow at Southbank Centre

'Orbits', a collaborative installation by MTI's Pete Batchelor and Mike Blow, was presented last week in the Clore Ballroom at the Southbank Centre. The piece was supported by the Philharmonia Orchestra and used recordings of some of the instrumentalists from the orchestra alongside NASA space sounds, played out of speakers on the end of these tilted spinning arms.

With thanks to Peter Eötvös, Jonathan Mayes, Juliette Reid, Philharmonia Orchestra, and the Southbank Centre.

Convergence: Complexity and Simplicity - Call for submissions

Convergence: Complexity and Simplicity
An International Conference/Festival of Music, Technology and Ideas, Thursday 12 to Sunday 15 September 2019

Information on the Convergence Conference/Festival of Music, Technology and Ideas at De Montfort University, Leicester UK, is now online at:

Submissions can be made via the site. Deadline for submissions is 31 March.

The theme in 2019 is Complexity and Simplicity and a wide range of paper and music submissions is encouraged.

Convergence aims to bring together many of the diverse strands of music made with new technologies and to celebrate these alongside some traditional practices.  In 2019 we will also be working with the Darbar Fringe Festival to bring high quality traditional and experimental Indian music projects to the conference.

We are delighted that Curtis Roads will be our guest composer - thanks to the support of the US Embassy in London and the British Association of American Studies.

Hope to see you in Leicester!

Sat/Sun Jan. 26/27: Electroacoustic Music in Great Britain - Past/Present/Future

The weekend of January 26th & 27th, a very exciting two-day event will be held at the University of Greenwich, titled "Electroacoustic Music in Great Britain: Past/Present/Future".

Co-organised by BEAN (British ElectroAcoustic Network) and the School of Design of the University of Greenwich, the event celebrates the 40th anniversary of EMAS (the Electroacoustic Music Association of Great Britain), with a weekend of talks, concerts and discussions celebrating the achievements of Electroacoustic music in the UK, together with discussion of how best to move forward as a community.

MTI² will be well represented, with talks and concert works by Professors Simon Emmerson & Leigh Landy and graduates Dave Holland, Louise Rossiter & Andrew Hill, and with lecturer James Andean active as one of the organisers of the event.

In addition, a number of concerts across both days will also include works by Trevor Wishart, Denis Smalley, Jonty Harrison, Katharine Norman, Pete Stollery, Christian Eloy, Jo Thomas, Evelyn Ficarra, Rolf Gehlhaar, Aki Pasoulas, Andrew Lewis, Ambrose Seddon, Emma Margetson, Nikos Stavropoulos, and plenty more!

For more information and registration:

MTI presents: Sweet Anticipation - new works by Landy, Young, Andean, Nance & Spowage

On Wednesday January 16th, MTI is proud to present our first concert of 2019, featuring the latest works by Leigh Landy, John Young, James Andean, Rick Nance & Neal Spowage. Including a world premiere, and several UK premieres!

The De Montfort University Music, Technology & Innovation 2018-19 concert series presents:

Wednesday January 16th 2019, 7pm, PACE

Join us for our first concert of 2019 - a very special evening, featuring some of the latest work from the MTI!
Come hear what our professors and lecturers have been up to...

Featuring new works by John Young, Leigh Landy, James Andean, Rick Nance and Neal Spowage.

PACE building, Richmond Street, Leicester UK, LE2 7BQ
Start time 7pm

Sonos Localia's 'Loudspeaker Music for Headphones'

2018 saw the official launch of the Sonos Localia project, with their first release 'Loudspeaker Music for Headphones, Volume One', featuring two works by MTI's James Andean:

Sonos Localia is a new digital label, specialising in recording and distributing work created specifically to be heard in three-dimensional space. The project's first release, 'Loudspeaker Music for Headphones, Volume One', features 13 electroacoustic pieces which have been replayed live through a circular eight-channel loudspeaker array. Using a recording technique based around dummy-head microphones placed in the prime location at the centre of the array captures the full width, depth, movement and subtle localisation in the music. Listening to these recordings on stereo headphones, the full spatiality of the original work can be experienced as intended by the composer – normally only possible by attending a live performance and sitting at the centre of the auditorium. By recording as much spatial detail as possible, Sonos Localia brings the experience of attending a live loudspeaker concert to a much wider audience.

'Loudspeaker Music for Headphones, Volume One' features two works by MTI's James Andean: 'Ainnurruvar II' (2013), and, in collaboration with ex-MTI student Visa Kuoppala, 'Pimeydestä Valoon' (2011). Also included are works by a wide range of significant UK-based acousmatic composers, including Aki Pasoulas, Ben Ramsay, Emma Margetson, Brona Martin, and MTI graduate Andrew Hill.

'Loudspeaker Music for Headphones, Volume One' is available from the Sonos Localia Bandcamp page: