Music of Reality 4/26: Beautiful Questions: Music, the Cosmos, and EP Release Event

Wednesday, April 26, 2017
The Armory
191 Highland Ave
Somerville, MA

6:00 PM - Pre-concert discussion on the intersection of the arts and sciences with Robert Kirzinger of the BSO and cosmologist Dr. Cora Dvorkin
7:00 PM - Concert

Music of Reality presents an interdisciplinary event that will explore the beautiful questions in cosmology through music and lecture, as well as celebrate the release of their debut EP ‘Beauty from Nothing’.

Cosmologist Dr. Cora Dvorkin of Harvard will present talks that explore big, open questions: studying the cosmic microwave background to uncover the physics of inflation, dark matter, and primordial gravitational waves. The talks will be interwoven with performances by acoustic and electronic musicians - each inspired by different questions and exploring different implications for our place in the universe.

Preceding the event, there will be a pre-concert discussion on the intersections of the arts and sciences with Dr. Dvorkin and Robert Kirzinger of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. All are welcome to attend and there will be a brief Q&A session following the discussion.

PERFORMANCES by Transient Canvas, DJ collective Table Manners, pianist Sophia Subbayya Vastek, and electronic musician David Ibbett.

LECTURE: Dr. Cora Dvorkin - "The Beautiful Questions in Cosmology"

MUSIC written by David Ibbett, Steven Snowden, Mischa Salkind-Pearl, Johannes Maria Staud, and including commissioned miniatures by Mischa Salkind-Pearl, Robert Honstein, Mary Kouyoumdjian, Jason Charney, and Stefanie Lubkowski.

David Ibbett
MoR: Impulse @ The Armory

A huge thank you to all of our incredible colleagues who helped us put on an amazing show in Somerville!  To all of the terrific composers who wrote new works - Emily Koh, Giovanni Piacentini, Sam Torres, Clifton Ingram, and Curtis K. Hughes.  To the amazing cellist Stephen Marotto who joined us on stage.  To the Armory for all their invaluable help in putting on a technically spotless show.  And of course, to biologist Paul Garrity, for believing in our work and teaching us about the evolution of sensory perception.  

We also had an amazing time leading workshops at Yamaha and Boston University!  Thanks to all for an inspiring few days in the Boston area!

We had an amazing time at the NoiseGate Festival a few weeks back.  A huge thank you to Dr. Tae Hong Park who brought us on board, the whole NoiseGate crew who made the show run smoothly, our videographers, and of course, everyone who came out!   A very special thanks to the NYU physics students who came to our pre-concert event and asked us GREAT questions.  And lastly, a huge thank you to physicist Matthew Kleban who has continually supported our efforts and is a wonderful (and brilliant) human being.  

CMB Sonifications

Sonifications of the Cosmic Microwave Background signal from the last Music of Reality Show, created from data collected by NASA’s WMAP probe.

In order to experience the data’s underlying patterns, Dr. Matthew Kleban of NYU Physics and I have collaborated to produce these harmonic sonifications. By mapping multipole moment and temperature fluctuations to frequency and amplitude, a musical chord can be produced which reveals the harmonic relationships of the universe’s early plasma state. The sonifications simulate the gradual emergence of this chord from total noise - a journey from the early universe to the present day - and go on to playfully explore higher partials and raw radio telescope static. Gradually, the intensity of the harmonic peaks is sharpened to allow the universal harmonies to shine out.