In this workshop, participants will be introduced to the modular synthesizer. In addition to learning about how the modular synthesizer works, they will learn the basics of what they will need to start building a synthesizer of their own. The instructor will be bringing her own modular synthesizer for participants to try, and they will have the opportunity to create their own digital sounds to save on a USB drive and take home. Workshop requirements: No previous experience with synthesizers or any musical instrument is necessary. Participants must bring their own USB drive.
About the instructor: Electronic music composer Dr. Chelsea Bruno has been composing and releasing electronic music since 2008 under the artist alias Eden Grey. Her father’s work as a piano technician and rebuilder inspired her to compose at an early age and pursue a career in music.
Seven years of lessons in classical piano had a major outcome on her aesthetic. First composing songs on the piano in her teenage years, she began using a USB/MIDI keyboard at age 18 to begin recording electronic music in Ableton Live. She pursued an undergraduate degree at the University of Miami in visual art, sculpture, performance art, poetry, and literature, and first began to participate in electronic music seminar classes.
Chelsea started her masters’ degree in Music Technology at Florida International University in January of 2011, which opened her world to the history of electronic music composers and led to her first patching experiments, creating algorithmic compositions using Max/MSP. Her Masters’ thesis is titled “Vocal Synthesis and Deep Listening”.
She was a recipient of the Presidents’ Innovation Award to attend the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) convention in Anaheim, California in January of 2013, where she first discovered the Eurorack format of modular synthesis. She began working on her own custom Eurorack later that year during her graduate internship with 4MS Company in Portland, Oregon, where she learned to build and play Eurorack synthesizers.
She began her PhD in Music Composition at Royal Holloway, University of London in September 2014 and was focusing on collaborative and interdisciplinary sound art performance and fixed media projects. She was formally awarded in June of 2020 with her dissertation titled: “A Portfolio of Compositions Exploring Modular Synthesis in Electronic Music”.
While conducting her independent research on modular synthesizers and electronic music, she performed in London, Wales and throughout Europe, including events in Slovenia, Sweden, Paris, SuperBooth 2017 and 2018 in Berlin and Hamburg in 2019 as part of the ePhil Electronic Music Series. She showed her custom built modular synthesizer at Synthfest UK in Sheffield in 2016 and 2018. She also established the CV FREQS modular meet / concert event series in London during her PhD research from 2016-2019. In this time she organized 12 events at different venues in London including the Waterloo House of Vans Skate Park and the Iklectik Art Lab venue in Lower Marsh, central London.
She continues hosting the CV FREQS podcast series, interviewing electronic music artists and module manufacturers. Most recently, she performed at the Superbooth22 Synthesizer trade show in Berlin, Germany, May 13 2022.