Xenakis Synth

Xenakis Synth is a graphical composition tool that user to emulate textural compositional style of the Greek composer Iannis Xenakis (1922–2001). In many of Xenakis's musical works, such as Metastasis, as well as his architectural design of the Phillips Pavilion for the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair, Xenakis employed hyperbolic paraboloids to create musical and physical surfaces. Xenakis used his expertise as an engineer, architect, and composer to composer music unlike that of any other composer.

This program is inspired by the work of Xenakis, and strives to act as a tool for composers, music theorists, and sound explorers. In Xenakis Synth, the user draws lines on the screen by clicking dragging the left mouse button. When the space bar is pressed, playback begins, and the lines are interpreted as the trajectories of sinusoidal glissandi. The interplay of moving musical lines affords the user great flexibility for designing unique sonic textures.

Under the hood, Xenakis Synth relies on RtAudio by Gary Scavone as well as OpenGL. A custom class deals with shuttling information from the graphics function to the audio processing portion of the project. Any code on this page can be used and modified at will, just give credit if you reuse anything here. Xenakis Synth runs on Max os X and Linux.

A full list of commands can be found in the readme.

By: Elliot Kermit-Canfield | Autumn 2013