Expressive Engines: Musical Technologies from Automata to Robots

Symposium and Concert - Monday, February 15, 2016
Nicholas Music Center and Richard H. Shindell Choral Hall (Mortensen Hall) on Douglass Campus
85 George Street, New Brunswick, NJ

Symposium: 8:45 a.m.–3:30 p.m. at Richard H. Shindell Choral Hall
The Expressive Engines symposium explores a wide variety of themes surrounding automatic music from automata to robots, including historical and contemporary perspectives. The symposium is free and open to the public. Click here for symposium abstracts.

This symposium is organized by Mason Gross School of the Arts faculty Rebecca Cypess and Steven Kemper. Special thanks to Mauk Hudig and the Mason Gross School of the Arts

Humanoid figures composed of instruments, from Giovanni Battista Braccelli,
Bizzarie di varie figure (1624). Rosenwald Collection, Library of Congress.
8:45 a.m. – Opening remarks
9–10 a.m. – Session 1: Aesthetics and Performance in the Early Modern Era and Today
Music’s Technophilic Technophobia
Emily Dolan (Harvard University)
Built to Perform: Design Principles and Performance Practices for Musical Robots
Troy Rogers (Expressive Machines Musical Instruments)
10–10:15 a.m. – Coffee break
10:15–11:45 a.m. – Session 2: Automation, Expression, and Music at the Crossroads
Perspectives on Expressivity in Robotic Music
Steven Kemper (Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University)
“It would be without error”: Automation as Expression in Engramelle’s Tonotechnie (1775)
Rebecca Cypess (Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers University)
           "What if Orfeo Was an Automaton?"
Bonnie Gordon (University of Virginia)
12–1:30 p.m. – Break
1:30–2:30 p.m. – Session 3: Interactivity and the Self in Musical Robotics
Composing Perception in Interactive Musical Machines
Scott Barton (Worcester Polytechnic Institute)
Composing Machine: The Triadex Muse
Thomas Patteson (Curtis Institute of Music)
2:30–2:45 p.m. – Coffee break
2:45–3:30 p.m. – Roundtable discussion by all conference participants
7:30 p.m. – Concert at Nicholas Music Center
Acoustic and robotic instruments featuring music from the early modern and contemporary eras. Performances by Rutgers students and faculty, as well as musical automatons from the Murtogh D. Guinness Collection of Mechanical Musical Instruments and Automata of the Morris Museum and the musical robots made by Expressive Machines Musical Instruments.
General Public $15 / Rutgers Alumni, Employees, and Seniors $10 / Students $5
Ticket Office: 848-932-7511