Alfonso Pérez Carrillo - Special Seminar - Enhancing Spectral Synthesis Techniques with Performance Gestures using the Violin as a Case Study

Wed, 01/19/2011 - 5:15pm
Seminar Room
Event Type: 
Guest Lecture
In this work we investigate new sound synthesis techniques for imitating musical instruments using the violin as a case study. It is a multidisciplinary research, covering several fields such as spectral modeling, machine learning, analysis of musical gestures or musical acoustics. It addresses sound production with a very empirical approach, based on the analysis of performance gestures as well as on the measurement of acoustical properties of the violin. Based on the characteristics of the main vibrating elements of the violin, we divide the study into two parts, namely bowed string and violin body sound radiation.
Both the results of the bowed string and the violin body studies have been incorporated into a violin synthesizer prototype based on sample concatenation. Predicted envelopes of the timbre model are applied to the samples as a time-varying filter, which entails smoother concatenations and phrases that follow the nuances of the controlling gestures. These transformed samples are finally convolved with a body impulse response to recreate a realistic violin sound. The different impulse responses used can enhance the listening experience by simulating different violins, or effects such as stereo or violinist motion. Additionally, an expressivity model has been integrated into the synthesizer, adding expressive features such as timing deviations, dynamics or ornaments, thus augmenting the naturalness of the synthetic performances.
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