Composition Thesis

By Jake Schlaerth

I am attempting to traverse the fields of both music and visual art via the realm of computer programming. I have always been interested in alternative midi controllers, and with my recent interest in Max and OpenGL, I have begun to work with the Haken Continuum Fingerboard. Our school’s fingerboard is an older model, meaning that it has no on-board synthesizer. I have had to work with raw midi data in max in order to design my own working translation of the numbers from the fingerboard into a system of digital signal processing, and then use that signal processing to control OpenGL rendering software (through Jitter). The culmination of this work will be my Composition Thesis Recital in late April. A preview of the work :      ...

Kaleidoscope (I Believe In Us)


This creative project was a music video for a local band out of Cleveland, Ohio for their original song “I Believe In Us” This was a one day shoot that took place in a local church and on the lake front in Mentor Headlands. We were immediately presented with a problem: How do you shoot inside a church without it looking like the inside of a church as it would send mixed messages about the song. To deal with this issue, we decided to frame most of the shots within one portion of the church’s stage and to focus primarily on tight framings, a lot of medium close-ups and close-ups to frame out as much of the church as possible. We also experimented with strong backlighting and placing film lights as practicals within the frame. This created lens flares and slightly washed out the background, leading the eye away from the less desirable aspects of the frame. Since the...

Circular Logic

By Andrew Gross

This was a recording project of my original compositions. Some of the music is acoustic, and was performed by my friends. Others are videos of me with electronics and a few other musicians. Circular Logic was the title of my graduate composition recital....

Brass Quintet Recording at St. Paul’s Church


After recording a brass quartet in the chapel at St. Paul’s Church for Create_Space, I decided that I wanted to experiment some more with its ambience. The reverberations echo everywhere in the half-circle-shaped building, and I tried to find the best way to capture them. I recruited a brass quintet from the School of Music, which included two trumpets, a trombone, a french horn and a tuba, and brought them to St. Paul’s. The most striking aspect of the church from an acoustic standpoint is its large balcony in the front. Overlooking the whole church, this is where the organ and the choir is located during services. I first attempted to place four microphones, two SM-57s and two Audix condensers, equally spread out on this balcony while the quintet played from the gathering space below. This captured the reverberations of what the five musicians played, but the signal was...

Mobile Recording and Experimentation

By Eric Ruhl

My creative research was for a final project for one of my Music Production classes. Unfortunately, the same day my band was all set to make the trip down to record, the studio at the RTV building was shut down due to a problem. With this news I frantically began searching for an alternative means to make this project happen. Upon learning the news, two of the band members decided not to make the trip down, so I was left with another producer and the drummer of the band. Due to being unable to find a large enough space to record on such short notice, we decided to get experimental in our approach. My personal bedroom studio was used in order to create new sounds, and explore the possibilities of recorded sounds. We stayed up all night looking for anything we could around the house in order to create music with. From the bell of my toaster oven to the gong-like sound of a wok lid, if it...

Haffa’s Records


Haffa’s is an ongoing short documentary film project about Haffa’s Records in Athens. I have been filming the store on various days since November and the project is nearly finished. My process was originally to go into the store and record anything that I could, intending to shape the film in the edit. As I began to edit each day’s footage, I began to notice patterns in the types of images I was interested in recording. These first few days in the store yielded little in terms of interesting footage, but contributed a blueprint for how I wanted to shape the rest of the project. The project focuses on the specific aspects of the store that define the space, from the building’s structural idiosyncrasies to the store’s customers and employees. Through postproduction, the aim of the finished film will be to shape individual details of the record store into a...

Brass Quartet Recording at St. Paul’s Church


In any sort of music recording, capturing the style of the music in its natural environment is key. Classical orchestras are best suited to the sound of a concert hall, while a punk rock band is most at home in a small, stuffy dive bar. I’ve always been fascinated by the natural echo found in traditionally designed churches, and as a player of a brass instrument myself, I knew that a quartet of tubas and euphoniums would sound amazing played in that space. So I tried to capture that sound. The recording of the Ohio University Tuba-Euphonium Quartet took place at St. Paul’s Church. The players sat in a close semicircle facing the altar of the church, with euphoniums on one side and tubas on the other. The sound that came out of the instruments was projected up, so I placed one pair of microphones at close range above the instruments, while another pair was placed about ten...

Masters Recital/Elliot Cole Performances


In January I had a series of performances; my masters recital and two dates with composer/performer Elliot Cole.   My masters recital consisted of repertoire that I have commissioned (Brian Harnetty – “Could I tell you a little story about that?”/Nick Zammuto – “Green Yellow Green Red”), a new-ish work (Matthew Burtner – “cloudprints”), a percussion standard (Minoru Miki – “Time for Marimba”), and two rare, early pieces of electroacoustic music from John Cage. It’s important for me to acknowledge the history of my field, but also to keep pushing it forward – I felt that this collection of pieces displayed that desire. The two pieces by John Cage fit both bills simultaneously. “Imaginary Landscape No. 1″ for piano, percussion and two turntables is a rarely performed work due to the...

Song Recital Recordings


I have teamed up with Ohio University Professor Emerita of piano, Gail Berenson, to present my M.M. voice recital on December 7th. We used an audio recorder from the createspace to make videos of repertoire from that recital to post online and give potential attendees a taste of what the performance will contain. Here’s a youtube link to one of those videos.

Elevator Music


In attempt to explore ideas of comfort and annoyance, this piece looks at how our personal actions affect others in public spaces. From 10am to 11am I rode the elevator in Seigfred Hall, singing to songs from my own collection as I listened to them on my mp3 player. I wore non-prescription sunglasses, thus not allowing me to see who was getting on or off the elevator with any clarity. The music was at a level I was unable to hear most conversations. I was exploring my own comfort level and also the idea of being oblivious to the events around me. I do fear retribution for my actions, wished to perform something that will also push my personal boundaries. Frame.jpg (218 KB)

‘Squirrel and Owl Karaoke’


This piece was crafted from ideas of narration and knowledge. The story itself came to me in a dream I had where I was doing stand-up comedy on a stage in front of the whole world. I was told I had 4 minutes and 57 seconds to say whatever I wanted to say. I was told that I had to make people laugh. I can’t even remember what else I was told because the people loved me… I killed it. Feel free to practice singing along.

“Hollow Threads”

By Ian Frederick

Chamber composition commissioned by the OU School of Music New Ensemble. Composed entirely on a small KORG keyboard at the @lab. Features an AbA form. Harmonies are minimalist, pandiatonic, pentatonic, quartal, and complex chromatic as well. Rock music, minimalist, Avant Garde, and Expressionist composition techniques are major influences throughout the piece.  

Hollow Threads

By Ian Frederick

This is my new composition, titiled “Hollow Threads” for the New Music Ensemble at the OU Music School. The instrumentation is for 2 flutes, oboe, Bb clarinet, bassoon, percussion, horn, trumpet, electric guitar, and electric bass guitar. The title refers to the prominent use of open 5th and 8ve sonorities, hence the term hollow, while threads refers to the various interweaving of voices in a polyphonic and imitative texture which is used throughout the piece. It features elements of minimalism, rock music, and 20th century Avant-Garde composition techniques. The midi file is available to hear for now. The ensemble is rehearsing the piece and will perform April 7th premiere at the Ridgdes at 19:30. A recording will be posted once available. Hollow threads audio...



OUTSIDE INSIDE  is a short autoethnographic documentary film I am working on, now in the stage of final editing. The work is about my ethnographic fieldwork in China with sound artists and experimental musicians and their communities; it’s also about the city of Beijing, sound, art and ethnographic experience. This is my experiment with sensory ethnography through film. Note: I look forward to any kind of creative, critical and curious input!  



Wiggah just won five nominations / awards for the month of January at the American International Film Festival which means they advance to the finals in December for the Big Karate Kid Tournament! Awards: Best Comedy, Best Soundtrack, Best Director, Best Cinematography & Best Editor. ‘WIGGAH’ is a one-of-a-kind cinematic event about a pimp who becomes a prostitute, one that is filled with unrivaled comeuppance and unexpected redemption. From acclaimed filmmaker Brian Zahm and legendary electronic musician Jacoti Sommes, comes ‘The Biggest, Blackest Whitesploitation Comedy Musical You’ve Ever Seen Sucka!!!’ Film Synopsis: ‘WIGGAH’ begins on inner-city streets where we meet a nasty, white street hustler, ‘T,’ who pimps to fuel his crack habit. One day while he’s pimp-slappin’ his low-rent tricks on the street corner, a smooth...

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