Department of Music and Performing Arts Professions

International Double Reed Society Conference 2014


International Conference on Auditory Display (ICAD)


Open on the afternoon of Sunday, June 22nd
and running through Wednesday June 25th.
Featured at the ICAD opening Reception - 6pm, Sunday June 23rd.

8th Floor
2 Metrotech, Brooklyn, NY
(There is an NYU entrance on the side of the building)

complex (2014)
Room 817
Mo Zareei
nY-Station (2014)
Room 821
M Bethancourt (Mouse & the Billionaire)
3:58 AM - (stasis) (2013)
Room 824
Zack Merritt
I Hear NY4D (2014)
Room 822
The Immersive Audio Group at NYU
(Jennifer Grossman, Mike Tierney,
Samuel Nacach, Braxton Boren,
Michael Musick, Charles Deluga,
& Agnieszka Roginska)

International Conference on Auditory Display (ICAD)


Loewe Theater,
35 W. 4th St. NY, NY
June 23rd, 2014

Borough Scaipthe (2014)
Fixed Media
Adam Wilson
Crowds (2012)
Antonio D'Amato
Tethyian Harp (2013)
J. Parkman Carter
NYC 10001 (2014)
Dennis Deovides A. Reyes III
Sonic Space No. 5 (2013)
Live Interactive System
Michael Musick
Spamology II (2014)
Irad Lee
Cloud Bridge (2013)
Yoon Chung Han and Qian Liu
48 16 N, 16 20 O (2003)
Tae Hong Park
Dance Music 017 (2014)
Jaesong You

Program Notes

complex is an audiovisual installation proposed to enhance awareness of the audiovisual phenomena characterizing our daily urban lives. The work involves mechatronic soundsculptures entitled Rasper, which employ objects from everyday urban technological life and shift the context in which they normally exist, while formalizing them through rhythmic patterns that are derived from Citygram database. Sharing a take on urban soundscape, Rasper and Citygram both draw attention to aural phenomena that are normally ignored by the ears of city dwellers: the ubiquitous buzzing of the urban machines, or the incessant clamor of NYC. Additionally, they both employ visual accompaniments to create unified audiovisual paradigms in which the worldly existence of noise is highlighted in a way that is both accessible and engaging. In this way, complex, as a compound of both, reasserts the audiovisual noise of the urban life, underscoring its existence and affirming the need for awareness of such noise.

During the Cold War, Y-stations broadcasted encoded messages, usually in the form of spoken sequences of numbers, across shortwave radio to agents in undisclosed locations. Messages were intended for a small and specific audiences, but were totally accessible to the public. Y-stations made information available, but meaning inscrutable.

nY-Station is an interactive installation that allows users to interact with and manipulate sonic data collected from various locations around New York City by the Citygram project. Users are invited to wear surveillance style headphones and manipulate sonic data through an eight-step sequencer, knobs and patch cables, casting the user in the role of a detached outside observer seeking to glean information from an array of possible connections and non-explicit meanings. While interaction with the installation will be interesting and rewarding for all users, only a small number will be able to decode the message.

I Hear NY4D presents a modular auditory display platform for layering recorded sound and sonified data into an immersive multi-channel environment. Our specific use of the platform layers Ambisonic recordings of New York City and a palette of virtual sound events that correspond to various static and real-time data feeds based on the listener’s location. This creates a virtual listening environment modeled on an augmented reality stream of sonified data in an existing acoustic soundscape, allowing for closer study of the interaction between real and virtual sound events, for simultaneous global and local sound experiences.

In Borough-Scaipthe, similarity matrices are used to select transitions between variable-length segments of music in a round-robin fashion from each of the available Citygram sound file recordings. The beginning of each segment of music is chosen by calculating similarity scores for the last analysis frame of the previous segment and all frames in the next sound file using Euclidean distances between audio features stored by the Citygram project; the most similar frame in the next sound file is chosen as the beginning of the next segment. Zero- crossings are used to generate dyadic harmonies that appear in cross-pulses over top of two differently paced layers of music derived from the Citygram audio data.

Crowds is an acousmatic piece freely inspired by the observation of crowd movements in a limited space as a crossroad or a square. A photo sequence of a square was taken from the top floor of a building during a day, then in each photo I divided most of the people in groups (i.e. people getting off from a bus, people coming out of a cinema, students, walking people, bench sitting people, woman, men, adults, children and so on). Then each group was associated with a kind of sound or a complex event as a sequence or a pattern. The essential scheme of the piece is given by the analysis of the photos, observing if and how many people of each group are visible in each photo.

Inspired by the Aeolian harp—a stringed instrument played by the wind—the Tethyian Harp is a digital instrument played by data streaming from the confluence of the Mohawk and Hudson Rivers. Located just north of Troy, this gateway to the Erie Canal is one of the most important natural and man-made river systems in American history. The merging of the Mohawk River’s hydraulic power, the Waterford Flight of Locks (the steepest canal system in the world), and the Hudson River’s tidal estuary marks the natural fortuity and industrial ingenuity that connected the Atlantic Ocean and New York City to the Great Lakes and the American Midwest. The Tethyian Harp taps into massive amounts of numerical data over long spans of time and uses harmonic material from an old Erie Canal work song to give voice to the present conditions of these rivers in real time. We can tune into this flow of river music at any time, whether for environmental information, serene reconnection, or both.

NYC 10001 is an 8.1 channel electro-acoustic composition, which has been created in the Experimental Music Studios of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The main materials in the piece have been derived from the Citygram project data and files. These data have been used to create the different sonic gestures and timbres occurring in the music.  NYC 10001 utilizes the Citygram mono audio files, containing recordings from the different notable locations of New York City, including Times Square, Central Park, Union Station, and the Rockefeller Center.  Additional materials also come from the Max MSP and Super Collider Citygram files that have been provided by the organizing committee. The composer tries to unify the diverse sounds and timbres of the different locations in New York City through the piece, thus creating a unique musical creation that demonstrates the numerous possibilites of sonification from its data.

Sonic Space No. 5 is part of the Sonic Spaces Project.  These compositions are interactive systems that analyze the sonic energy present in a space and use that data to drive “digital agents.”  These digital agents have been composed with a set of rules that allows them to come alive only when specific types of sonic energy are present.  If the conditions exist, which allow these agents to live, then they consume that sonic energy, transforming and processing it according to the data that describes the space, and playing it back into the space.  This re-introduction of processed sonic energy may then create the conditions for additional agents to come alive and join in.  All analysis of data, and exchange of energy occur through the medium of the physical space.  Additionally, the progression of this system is mapped to the cycle of a day, with certain agents tending to be active during specific times in this cycle, and tending to sleep during others.  This performance will have its daily cycle’s time length set so as to allow the audience to experience an entire cycle. This piece has been presented as both an installation and concert work, with today’s presentation having the system tuned for a concert experience.

Spamology II is a sequel to a research project developed during a residency at MediaLab-Prado Madrid in 2007, which dealt with interactive audiovisual representation of popular words in spam email messages. Spamology II is a sound composition primarily focused on exploring new sonification methods for revealing meaningful patterns in spam. Based on analysis of a gigantic archive of spam email messages, collected since 1997 by computer scientist Bruce Guenter, the composition was driven by attributive data extracted from the archive, such as popular words, geographical origin, sender's name, message length, and more. With the aid of an accompanied score, the work aims at proposing a new way to analyze spam data by sonic means, potentially useful for the purposes of researching behavior of spammers, revealing patterns which may reflect cultural and social trends as well as development of new spam management techniques.

Cloud Bridge is an immersive interactive audiovisual artwork for both data exploration and artistic creation. It explores how information can be visualized and then sonified to facilitate findings, and eventually become interactive visualization and sonification. The basic concept of this project is to give any dataset time-based, innovative presentation. Cloud Bridge functions in two modes: exploration and interaction. Exploration is designed to discover interesting patterns, shapes and relationships in between the dataset. Different colors are mapped to keywords for users to explore. Interaction is for targeting group interaction. A group of users functioning as a performance ensemble participate in the piece by interactively querying the database using Android and iOS devices. Each device is associated with a unique timbre and color for contributing to the piece, which appears on large shared screens and a surround-sound system for all participants and observers. Cloud Bridge leads to a new interactive experience utilizing data as medium to create visualization, sonification and real-time interaction.

Dance Music 017 is designed to capture 16 minutes of various New York City soundscapes, starting from 12:00 pm on Jan 31st, 2014. Through the big-data-gathering medium, Citygram, the composer attempted to design a transcendent ego-assimilating process via meta-experiencing of the collective soundscape.

Music Submission 

Due to multiple requests, the submission deadline for competition, concert, and installation works for ICAD 2014 has been extended to MARCH 16, 2014.

Submit music here.

Installation, Concert, and Competition Call

We invite submissions of installations or concert works which tie into this year's conference theme of Big Data. The conference hosts will be providing the NYU Citygram project data, through the conference website, as one possible source. Click this link for the NYU Citygram project data. However, artists are free to use data from any relevant big data set, such as those found through NYC Open Data.


Submission of concert works and installations for review: extended deadline: March 16, 2014
Submission of sonification contest entries for review: March 1, 2014
Notification of acceptance: April 15, 2014


This year's competition is sponsored by The NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress (CUSP). Artists of installation or concert works utilizing data from the supplied NYU Citygram project (available here) will have the option of submitting their piece for consideration in the competition. Furthermore, for consideration to the competition, concert works should be approximately 2-3 minutes in length (installations are not limited by this time length, but are encouraged to submit a short excerpt for adjudication).

A committee of professional artists will select winners. Contest participants may be asked to deliver a 3-5 minute presentation about their entry at the conference.

Downloading and Using the Citygram Dataset or Infrastructure


This dataset and infrastructure are provided for those interested in submitting artistic works for consideration in the 2014 International Conference on Auditory Display (ICAD) competition.  
For consideration in the competition works should heavily utilize the supplied dataset from NYU's Citygram project and/or the Citygram project infrastructure.  Additionally, works should be about 2 minutes in length.

Using the Citygram Project Infrastructure

In addition to or instead of using the curated dataset competitors are welcome to utilize the Citygram Infrastructure for the competition.  Classes have been included for both SuperCollider and Max to pull features from the database.  These classes will allow participants to pull the historic features from the curated dataset straight into either of these environments for further use, by wrapping and utilizing the above API protocols. 


The dataset is available for download in a multitude of database formats and audio wave files here. Classes for pulling data in Max and SuperCollider are also available here.
Thank you for your participation in this year's signification competition!

Concert Work Submissions

We invite submission of concert works to be presented at this year's conference on the evening of Monday, June 23. Works should relate to this years conference theme of Big Data.

Works may be for fixed-media, or live performance/processing, with or without performers. The concert hall will be set-up with an 8-channel surround speaker system. Preference will be given to works with a total duration of no more than 12 minutes. An audio file, score (if available), and description, all lacking personnel identifying marks, should be submitted to the website.

Installation Submissions

This year's conference will also have a number of spaces available at NYU-Poly, in Brooklyn for the presentation of installations. These will open and be presented Sunday evening as part of the conference opening night event. Pieces should relate to this years conference theme of Big Data.

Installation submissions will need to include; a stereo audio-excerpt file lasting no more than 15 minutes (there will be an option for an additional video link), and a narrative description of the piece. Also, in the submitted score file, please plan to include images, floor plans, or diagrams, as well as a list of all equipment that will be needed; specifying what will be supplied by the artist, and what the conference host would need to supply (please note, that in most cases, artists/scientists should plan on supplying all of their own equipment).

Venue Details

Venue details for the concert hall and installation spaces will be posted on the conference website.

Conference Information

See more information on ICAD 2014.


Conference Chairs
Agnieszka Roginska and Tae Hong Park