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Arizona lawmakers check out ASU at Day at the Capitol

February 15, 2018

A little rain can't hold back Arizona State University's brightest.

The 32nd annual ASU Day at the Capitol, hosted by the ASU Office of Government and Community Engagement in collaboration with the ASU Alumni Association, invited elected officials to the Senate Lawn in downtown Phoenix on a rainy Feb. 14 afternoon for lunch with a side of Sun Devil pride.

Video by Krisanna Mowen/ASU

Lawmakers checked out exhibits featuring ASU's signature programs and initiatives.

Students and faculty were on hand to answer questions and highlight ASU’s impact on the local community and economy. 

ASU President Michael M. Crow attended the event, speaking with students and mingling with lawmakers, including Arizona State alumniRep. César Chávez, Democrat representing District 29 in Phoenix; Rep. Tony Navarette, Democrat, District 30 in Glendale; Rep. Isela Blanc, Democrat, District 26 in Tempe; Rep. Michelle Udall, Republican, District 25 in Mesa; and Rep. Douglas Coleman, Republican, District 16 in Apache Junction. César Chávez, Tony Navarette, Isela Blanc, Michelle Udall and Douglas Coleman. 

Top photo: April Hobby talks to students about the ASU Alumni Association's upcoming events and initiatives at the ASU Day at the Capitol. ASU Day at the Capitol is a day where many departments at ASU set up booths outside of the Arizona Capitol to show off the great achievements that are made possible by state funding to higher education. Photo by Marcus Chormicle/ASU Now

Exploring how science and technology affect music-making

ASU School of Music faculty and staff engage public at the MIM


February 15, 2018

Faculty, staff and alumni in Arizona State University’s School of Music in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts engaged students and community members of all ages at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix on Jan. 20-21, to demonstrate how science can bring music to life. The School of Music presenters and performers pushed musical boundaries at the signature event and focused on how science and technology affect the way music is made and heard.

Garth Paine, associate professor in the School of Music and the School of Arts, Media and Engineering, and Simon Mancuso, faculty associate in the School of Music, performed “Metal Music.”          Participants in MIM music activity Visitors participate in a musical-instrument activity at the MIM on Jan. 20. Photo by Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts Download Full Image

“The transforming experience of ‘Metal Music’ took the audience inside the sounds of metal objects,” said Paine. “The performance was a multifaceted experience of music and the science of resonance, featuring a wide range of custom-built instruments, including resonating cymbals, robots that played Tibetan singing bowls, metal percussion instruments, analog synthesizers and a digital re-synthesis process of live flute playing. The music was about texture and about sound quality. It was an experimental music performance focusing on the rich timbre of the sounds that can be produced by metal objects.”

Paine said those who attended experienced unfamiliar music in a complex, enticing sound world that was thick with texture, bringing attendees closer to sound as a material — like a sculpture in air.

Paine teaches the techniques within his Hybrid Ensemble class, his Advanced Interactive Sound class and in his composition lessons at ASU.

Samuel Peña, community engagement coordinator in the School of Music, facilitated an AZ Beat Lab workshop where attendees participated in a “community music jam,” consisting of six 30-minute jam sessions that utilized electronic drum machines, synthesizers and an array of percussion folklore instruments from around the world.

Peña said the workshop was about creativity, connecting with one another and exploring how electronic and world instruments can fit together with a group of people from all levels of experience.

“Through creating community, people build confidence within themselves and also confidence in their ability to connect with others,” said Peña. “One of my goals is to find ways for people to discover how the power of creating music in a community can help build relationships in a way that goes beyond the relationships that just words can do.”

Peña also participated in a collaborative session with Higher Octave Healing (HOH) and AZ Beat Lab that utilized the Ableton Live software program with a small group of pre-selected students. The session was part of a pilot program to explore ways in which music and technology can serve the sensory needs of students on the autistic spectrum.

HOH is a non-profit music therapy organization that is in partnership with the Music Therapy program in the ASU School of Music. Kymla Eubanks, who received her master’s degree in music from ASU in 2013 and is a faculty associate in the School of Music, is director of HOH.

Percussionist, composer and educator Jeremy Muller, who received a doctor of musical arts from the School of Music in 2012, performed several pieces in “Sonic Physiography” that showcased the interface between science and music, exploring music built on scientific and mathematical ideas that blend live acoustic playing and digital music.

Visit the School of Music’s “Community Music Lab” at ASU’s Open Door on Saturday, Feb. 24, from 1-6 p.m. in Zone A and explore a hands-on musical experience of music-making on an array of percussion and electronic instruments.

Lynne MacDonald

communications specialist, School of Music

480-727-7189