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Project #1: Create A New SLOrk Instrument ("Small Sound Sketch")

Due dates:

  • 2019.4.10 in class: instrument presentation +1-2 minute live mini-performance.
  • reading and response (to be announced)


In this project, you are to create a laptop orchestra instrument for a single hemispherical speaker array.

CCRMA Listening Room

  • Only place in the world where you can work directly with an actual slorkstation for this assignment
  • Knoll room 128, first floor, past the Recording Studio
  • Your SUID should work as a keycard (or talk to Nette or Matt)
  • Reserve specific times at http://ccrma.stanford.edu/rooms (4th column)
  • Primarily a spatial sound research lab (like the Stage; note all the surround speakers we won't be using)
  • SLOrk has limited permission to leave stations set up for development/composition/rehearsal as long as we fully tidy up afterwards
  • When you are done, leave all SLOrkstations (and other SLOrk equipment) neatly and compactly against the walls opposite the door (not in the sweet spot as shown above!)


  • design and create a new instrument for laptop and a single hemispherical speaker array!
  • use ChucK to create/implement the instrument
  • should take advantage of the multi-channel aspect (or have a good reason to not do that)
  • consider issues of playability, expressiveness, embodiment of sound, and also use in an ensemble setting
  • craft a short musical statement (1-2 minutes) for your instrument, describe/score it, and perform it in class
  • each person should turn in their own instrument/performance - however, working together is highly encouraged!
  • feel free to use any combination of keyboard, mouse/trackpad, gametrak, joystick, and any other input device (instructors can help acquire trigger pads, MIDI knobs, etc...)


  • ChucK audio programming language (download this!)
  • S.M.E.L.T. toolkit for mapping keyboard, mouse, joystick to sound
  • If you need help with ChucK and/or S.M.E.L.T. please reach out to Jack and/or Trijeet
  • feel free to start experimenting and prototyping on your own, but you'll want to get into the listening room and work with an actual hemi speakers
  • two full station will be set up in the CCRMA Listening Room.
  • if you don't know how to use the SLOrk svn repo then please email yourself whatever files your instrument uses (i.e., the ChucK program(s)) so you can retrieve them in class to install on a different slorkstation