Electrifying Opera, Amplifying Agency. Artistic results. reflection and public presentations (PhD) (2023)

Kristin Norderval

About this exposition

Exposition of PhD research for PhD fellow at the Oslo National Academy of the Arts, Academy of Opera, Kristin Norderval. This artistic research project examines the artistic, technical, and pedagogical challenges of developing a performer-controlled interactive technology for real-time vocal processing of the operatic voice. As a classically trained singer-composer, I have explored ways to merge the compositional aspects of transforming electronic sound with the performative aspects of embodied singing. I set out to design, develop, and test a prototype for an interactive vocal processing system using sampling and audio processing methods. The aim was to foreground and accommodate an unamplified operatic voice interacting with the room's acoustics and the extended disembodied voices of the same performer. The iterative prototyping explored the performer's relationship to the acoustic space, the relationship between the embodied acoustic voice and disembodied processed voice(s), and the relationship to memory and time. One of the core challenges was to design a system that would accommodate mobility and allow interaction based on auditory and haptic cues rather than visual. In other words, a system allowing the singer to control their sonic output without standing behind a laptop. I wished to highlight and amplify the performer's agency with a system that would enable nuanced and variable vocal processing, be robust, teachable, and suitable for use in various settings: solo performances, various types and sizes of ensembles, and opera. This entailed mediating different needs, training, and working methods of both electronic music and opera practitioners. One key finding was that even simple audio processing could achieve complex musical results. The audio processes used were primarily combinations of feedback and delay lines. However, performers could get complex musical results quickly through continuous gestural control and the ability to route signals to four channels. This complexity sometimes led to surprising results, eliciting improvisatory responses also from singers without musical improvisation experience. The project has resulted in numerous vocal solo, chamber, and operatic performances in Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, and the United States. The research contributes to developing emerging technologies for live electronic vocal processing in opera, developing the improvisational performance skills needed to engage with those technologies, and exploring alternatives for sound diffusion conducive to working with unamplified operatic voices.
typeresearch exposition
keywordsgestural controllers, contemporary music, opera, improvisation, voice and live electronics
last modified07/11/2023
share statuspublic
affiliationOslo National Academy of the Arts (KHIO), Academy of Opera
copyrightKristin Norderval
licenseCC BY-NC-ND
published inResearch Catalogue

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2222477 Bilde Jonas Sjøvaag All rights reserved
2241469 ©CJA_1006_280820_KN_1_54 - copy 2020 All rights reserved
2248835 icli2020_39_Norderval Norderval All rights reserved
2252263 17805_ca_object_representations_media_10013_publiclarge copy Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2252267 Title KN Public domain
2252347 Menu KN Public domain
2252966 Menu KN Public domain
2252967 MENU kn Public domain
2252968 LinkedMENU kn Public domain
2259914 AR PhD reflections-Norderval Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2260374 ©CJA_1006_280820_KN_1_54 Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2260375 ©CJA_1006_280820_KN_1_54 Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2260482 ©CJA_1006_280820_KN_1_54 Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2263009 MENU-revised titles KN Public domain
2271957 Electrifying Opera, Amplifying Agency-Artistic research reflections-Norderval Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2352245 2023-09-02 NKF_DOK2023-128_Kristin Norderval_edit4.mov_1080p Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2354419 Electrifying Opera, Amplifying Agency-Artistic research reflections-Kristin Norderval Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2354439 Program-Crane Reflects on a Favor-VoxLAB VårFEST 2023 VoxLAB All rights reserved
2354769 Video poster - Crane Reflects Kristin Norderval All rights reserved
2355904 FLYING BLIND - Kristin Norderval Kristin Norderval, 2020 All rights reserved
2366848 Video poster - Flying blind Kristin Norderval All rights reserved

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