Newworld.jpgI’m in Miami at the annual conference of ‘Network Performing Arts Production Workshops’ (that’s the current title of the organisation; they have stated in the introductory remarks that they’re looking for a more pithy name than ‘NPAPW’!). Our host organisation is the New World Symphony.
Our first presenter is Delma Rodriguez of Anilla Cultural (Uruguay) (cultural ring). I didn’t live-blog this one, but here’s the abstract and a link to a different blog that summarises its work really well.

The Anilla Cultural (Cultural Ring), formed in 2011, is a multinational effort to extend access to cultural and educational programs in participating countries of the Americas and Western Europe. Hear from Uruguayan project lead Delma Rodriguez about some of the many projects they’ve conducted over the years and how they’ve built a network of countries collaborating with the use of R&E Networks.

IMG_0791.jpgOur first panel is from EaPConnect – Eastern Partnership Connect, an organization which promotes collaboration between EU countries and Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. The panel for today’s presentation is as follows:

  • Reso Kiknadze (Rector of the Tbilisi State Conservatoire, Georgia)
  • Naira Kocharyan (Junior Researcher, National Academy of Scences of Armenia)
  • Laura Põldvere (Award-Winning Singer, Estonia)
  • Paolo Girol (PhD Candidate at the Composition Department of Estonian Academy of Music, Tallinn)
  • Oleg Iazina (Musician and Senior Teacher, Belarusian State Academy of Music)
  • Eugene Efimov (Head of International Cooperation, Department of the United Institute of Information Technologies, Belarusian Academy of Sciences)
  • Kristina Lillemets (Director, Infrastructure at Information Technology Foundation for Education (HITSA), Estonia)
  • Arkadi Avanesov (Vice Rector, International Relations at Yerevan State Conservatory after Komitas, Armenia)

The presentation includes an overview of Music Without Borders, a LOLA enabled project uniting musicians from Estonia, Belarus, Italy and others. The trailer video gives a great overview of the project, which set out to enable various European education sites to be LOLA-connected.

Some of the musicians reflect on the rehearsals for the project, which included a Mozart quartet and other acoustic ensembles playing pre-20thC classical music. During the rehearsals, the musicians learned over time to adapt to the mild latency and to improve the quartet’s sync. Estonian singer Laura Põldvere comments that the latency was less of an issue for her because “there is always some problem with the equipment in live performance”. Reso Kiknadze (Tbilisi State Conservatoire, Georgia) comments on his experience of the known phenomenon of the ensemble to decelerate due to perceptions of shared timing, and talks about the musicians’ coping strategies for the ‘floating sense of the beat’. He compares the experience to playing in a large echoic room.

[JB comment: the distances in the EU – around 1000km for this project – make live LOLA connections easily feasible, especially when the countries are this close to each other, because the latencies in this geographical area can be as low as ~20ms round trip, which is the sweet spot for musicians to play together with each other without sync /timing issues. In this case, the project participants report a 50ms round trip, which is right on the upper edge of what’s possible without major performer timing compensation.]

For academics who wish to pursue this further, the following paper is the best overview I’ve seen, particularly ‘Strategies for Delay Compensation’.