SEMINAR 1 [ENGLISH VERSION] (Link to the Video)
The first seminar of the musIC 2.0 project was held at the German Hearing Center Hannover, Hannover Medical University. Seven cochlear implant users, six music composers and artists from the Hannover Music and Arts School and the Hamburg Music School participated in the seminar.
First, Waldo Nogueira presented an introduction to the project (slides). Next he continued with an overview of the structure and timelines of the project. He continued explaining how cochlear implant works and how the basic dimensions of sound (loudness, pitch and rhythm) are perceived with a cochlear implant. Watch the video in the following to view the presentation: Video Link
Next the music composers and artists (Jieun Jun ,Clemens Damerau, Abedian Arsalaan, Joachim Heintz, Jacob Sello, Pit Noack) participating in the project presented themselves. They presented their music background, style and preliminary concepts on how they will create new music.
This introduction served to start with the first dynamic where cochlear implant users and music composers interacted to each other. The first station consisted of a RealTime vocoder which was used to demonstrate the limitations in spectral resolution when hearing with a cochlear implant. Composers and cochlear implant users exchanged their impressions,
In the second station we performed all together different music perceptions tasks. For this we used our music perception toolbox developed at the DHZ. The first one consisted of a melody contour identification task. Here 5 notes with different contour patterns (going up, down, up-down, down-up, etc) were presented and cochlear implant users had to decide which melody from a closed set was presented. We performed this task for melodies separated by 4 semitones, 3 semitones, 2 semitones and 1 semitone between each single note. This test was very useful for the musicians to understand the limitations in pitch perception and melody recognition when hearing with cochlear implants. This inspired Jieun to play her violing. She could show that CI users can distinguish notes on the violing that are separated by more than an octave, but when comparing notes separated by a single semitone it was difficult for the CI users to hear any difference. All in all, it was a great experiment!
A second test consisted of identifying instruments from a closed test. The instruments only differed by their spectral content (i.e. onsets were removed and vibratos and amplitude modulations were smoother). Here it was fantastic for the musicians to observe the difference in performance by different cochlear implant users. Some of them could recognize the instruments but some others could not.
Finally, a third task consisted of identifying rhythms. Here we observed that cochlear implant users can perceive very well differences in rhythm.
After visiting both stations and having exchanged the first impressions between cochlear implant users and musicians we went back all together to the seminar room. Here we relaxed more and while eating fantastic cakes and some cups of coffee we sat all together summarizing the observations made during the presentation and the dynamics.
In summary, it was a great Seminar to start musIC 2.0, everybody learned from each other, and the first goal, the fact that musicians and cochlear implant users could work together was by far accomplished. We are very happy and proud of this project and we are already waiting for the next Seminar!.