Electronic digital music practice for Neurodiverse People
Caused by recent technological as well as cultural developments – cheap elec- tronics, rapid prototyping technologies, respectively the DIY, maker and demo scenes – the majority of people in the western world are able to creatively express themselves in a multitude of ways. Apart from mainstream hypes such as the hipstamatic phenomenon the tools for digital content creation as well established social and cultural niches featuring unique expression vocabularies, e.g., embodied by experimental electronic music practice.
People with disabilities, however, mostly lack the possibility to take part in such cutting-edge movements: assistive technologies and careful design considerations are often of secondary interest to the designers and developers of the required technology, especially when it comes to the facilitation of cultural niches (This is by far not caused by bad faith, furthermore grounded in the very constraints inherent to such cutting edge movements).
However, questions remain on how e.g. electronic music practice can be scaf- folded to support people facing challenges in society due to differences in their neurologic development. How can it support them in expressing themselves in an experimental way beyond mainstream? How can it make the fun part accessible for them without pressing it into too much guidance? Can it empower them to even shape their own social niche(s) in the above-mentioned sense?
In my talk, I will give insights on how the DEIND project at Aalto University approaches these questions. In the project, we aim to connect neurodiverse people with the field of contemporary electronic and digital music practice. In pursuit of this, people with autistic spectrum disorders are invited to take part in the design process of electronic musical instruments. To facilitate music practice, we aim for a holistic instrument experience rather than a modular approach in which the underlying modules of electronic instruments, interface & mapping & sound synthesis, would become too evident, possibly interfere with the flow experience.
The close integration of target group members into the design cycle encourages a bilateral learning process: on the one hand, there is an intense and fruitful experience for the participants, on the other hand, it opens the opportunity for the involved researchers to identify challenges that are specific to this group yet reveal new perspectives on the broader view of their respective research area.
When: 5-6pm – Thurs, June 13th, 2013
Where: CIID, Toldbodgade 37b, 1253, Copenhagen K, DENMARK
Space is limited so please RSVP via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org (with ‘Till’ in the subject line)