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

Due dates:

  • 2024.4.10 in class: instrument presentation + 1-2 minute live mini-performance.


In this project, you are to 1) create a laptop orchestra instrument for a single hemispherical speaker array, 2) create a mini-musical statement using the instrument and perform it in class.



  • 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, the sound through the hemispherical speaker arrays, 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...)

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 Madalyn, Nette, or Matt)
  • Reserve specific times at http://ccrma.stanford.edu/rooms (3rd column) per these instructions
  • 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


  • ChucK audio programming language (download this!)
  • S.M.E.L.T. toolkit for mapping keyboard, mouse, joystick to sound
  • starter-code for gametrak, joystick, keyboard, mouse, multi-channel audio, OSC, and more
    • (the SLOrk machines have the same in ~/slork/starter-code)
  • If you need help with ChucK, S.M.E.L.T., starter-code please reach out in Discord or contact the teaching team!
  • 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
  • three 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 all necessary files your instrument uses (i.e., the ChucK program(s)) so you can retrieve them in class to install on a slorkstation during class