VOCABULARY OF SPACE IN ELECTROACOUSTIC MUSICS
Virtual reality, sound environments, Dolby Digital movies, 5.1 sound reproduction systems are some examples among many others that reveal a new sonic or musical world where space plays a leading role.
Nowadays, space can be composed, written, performed, manipulated, captured, fixed, synthesized. New listening situations have been appearing: cinema and home-cinema, concert
Musicians, sound engineers, sound designers as well as listeners need precise vocabulary allowing to speak about, describe or simply better appreciate space.
Is space becoming a fifth musical parameter, nearby height, duration, intensity and timbre? Some answer elements are present in that work.
Anyway, before making that question clear, it first seems advisable to gather all the knowledge and practices relative to space or sound spatialisation in electroacoustic musics.
With about 400 words and more than 1200 definitions, this lexicon offers an exhaustive state of the art in:
- acoustic or psychoacoustic sciences,
- hardware and software allowing to capture, fix, manipulate, simulate space,
- different technical or aesthetical point of views,
- different artistic practices,
- questions of description, syntax, writing or notation.
Bertrand Merlier is associate professor in computer music and sound engineering at Lyon 2 University and composer. He has been composing and experimenting with space for more than twenty years. He co-founded the GETEME, a research group about space .?