Modular Synth Masterclass with Gino Robair 11 January 2017 Torino Italy

The workshop will examine a number of techniques to use when improvising with modular synthesizers within a large group and it lays the groundwork for a concert the same evening, with the workshop participants.

The workshop will focus on global awareness and listening during an improvisation, while exploring patching strategies for achieving maximum variety and avoiding stagnation. We will also discuss concepts such as foreground/background, solo/support, gestural control, and intention/non-intention. This would be particularly interesting for modular synth users because the temptation with the instrument is to simply layer sounds. Actively patching, and utilizing concepts such as disruption vs. support can be very helpful for sparking ideas about new ways to approach electronics in an group-improv situation.

Gino uses strategies, concepts, and hand cues (conduction) based on his own work, as well as the work of John Zorn, Butch Morris, ROVA Sax Quartet, Anthony Braxton and Frank Zappa. Gino has done these workshops throughout North America and Europe, usually as a way to stage his improvised opera. And it works very well with a group of synthesizer players. Participants would bring their own instrument. They can use any analog synth, although modulars will often be the focus.

● The workshop has a duration of three hours at the end of which, students will perform a concert directed by maestro Robair.
● During the workshop we produce audio and video material that will later be published on our channels.
● The maximum number of participants per session is limited to 12 musicians.
● Every musician should have its own musical instrument (preferably a modular synths or other analog synths), power cables, electrical extension cords, long audio cables (at least 5 meters).

About Rob Robair
Gino Robair has created music for dance, theater, radio, television, silent film, and gamelan orchestra, and his works have been performed throughout North America, Europe, and Japan. He was composer in residence with the California Shakespeare Festival for five seasons and served as music director for the CBS animated series The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat. His commercial work includes themes for the TV and Comedy Central cable networks.

Robair is also one of the “25 innovative percussionists” included in the book Percussion Profiles (SoundWorld,
2001). He has recorded with Tom Waits, Anthony Braxton, Terry Riley, Lou Harrison, John Butcher, Derek Bailey, Peter Kowald, Otomo Yoshihide, the ROVA Saxophone Quartet, and Eugene Chadbourne, among many others. In addition, Robair has performed with John Zorn, Nina Hagen, Fred Frith, Eddie Prevost, Thinking Fellers Union Local 282, Myra Melford, Wadada Leo Smith, and the Club Foot Orchestra.

Robair is a founding member of the Splatter Trio and the heavy-metal band, Pink Mountain. In addition, he runs Rastascan Records, a label devoted to creative music. Robair is the editor-in-chief of Keyboard magazine and has contributed to Mix, Remix, Guitar Player, and Electronic Musician (EM) magazine, where he was an editor for 10 years. He is the author of two books, including The Ultimate Personal Recording Studio (Thompson; 2006).

About Noisecollective
Noisecollective is the cultural association behind the international event ‘SYNTH MEETING’, held on Torino Italy from 2011. Noisecollective It promotes musical culture in all forms, organizing training courses, workshops, talks and concerts.

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