Larkhall – The Sea Was Never Blue

Wednesday 2 October, 12-2pm, CM105.

The Sea Was Never Blue pairs an hour of melodic, dynamic new piano music with bespoke algorithmically-generated live visuals, short films in which each note played on the piano triggers an event on-screen, responding in real time to the give-and-take of the live performance. To create these visualisations, Larkhall (Charlie Williams) uses a modified acoustic piano that streams note-by-note data to his computer as he plays, allowing him to feed the music into algorithms he’s written that transform the musical data into a visual narrative. Each note played creates projected elements— from trees and birds, to abstract shapes and billowing smoke. Previously, Larkhall created a multichannel reactive sound space for multi-Grammy-award-winning ensemble eighth blackbird, which was performed at Chicago’s MCA. His cultural-commentary tech-intervention Cuddlr saw 250,000 people from around the world participate by downloading an app to find and cuddle an interested stranger nearby. It saw global press coverage, earning a spot in WIRED’s top 100 apps. His algorithmic video work has screened at the Shanghai Expo and Museum of Rome, and his contributions to music-recognition app Shazam were featured as Apple’s App of the Day and used by over 400 million people.

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