Vancouver Computer Music Meetings


VCMM is a gathering of the academics and practitioners involved in computer music research (at large), including digital signal processing, music information retrieval, new interfaces for musical expression and all the related fields of inquiry. At meetings, two researchers present their work and afterwards there is a short discussion period.

Should you be interested in participating in a meeting, or would like to find out more about the VCMM, please use the contact form available at the bottom of this page.

upcoming meetings

To be announced...

past meetings

Friday, January 17 (2014) – Pro Musica Festival Experts Panel; (click to show)

Presentations from Friday, December 3rd, 2010: (click to show)

Presentations from Wednesday, October 6th, 2010: (click to show)

Presentations from Friday, November 13th, 2009: (click to show)

Presentations from Friday, September 25th, 2009: (click to show)

Presentations from Friday, May 1st, 2009: (click to show)

Presentations from Friday, March 20th, 2009: (click to show)

Friday, November 21 (2014) – Pro Musica Festival Experts Panel

Friday night featured presentations by invited guests John Baker, Dr. James Maxwelland Kevin Regamey, and hosted by Prof. Philippe Pasquier, who spoke about their recent research in music and technology. This night was presented in conjunction with Pro Musica's Further Series Electroacoustic Festival 2014. Running from November 21-22, 2014 at the Western Front (303 E 8th Ave), it featured several B.C. artists and explored various ways technology can be applied to music.

Prof. Philippe Pasquier (SFU)

Philippe Pasquier hosted the evening and present a brief overview of current work on musical metacreation with some new examples of computer generated music, and report on a couple of announcements.

Philippe Pasquier is Professor at Simon Fraser University's School of Interactive Arts and Technology. He is both a scientist specialized in artificial intelligence and a multi-disciplinary artist. His contributions range from theoretical research in artificial intelligence, multi-agent systems and machine learning to applied artistic research and practice in digital art, computer music, and generative art. Philippe is the Chair and investigator of the AAAI series of international workshop on Musical Metacreation (MUME), the MUME-WE concerts series, the International workshop on Movement and Computation (MOCO), and he is the Symposium director for ISEA2015. He has co-authored over 100 peer-reviewed contributions, presented in forums ranging from the most scientifically rigorous to the most creatively arty.

Feel free to browse Philippe's research, MAMAS Laboratory and SIAT.

Dr. James Maxwell (SFU)

James Maxwell is a composer of concert music and music for contemporary dance, theatre, film, and media, and is Co-Artistic Director of Restless Productions. Upcoming premieres and works-in-progress include a new cello/bass duet for Vancouver’s Novo ensemble, and a new work with Restless and choreographer Claire French for solo dancer and cello, to be premiered at EDAM in Spring 2015. James is also an active researcher in the field of generative music, music psychology, and computer-assisted composition (CAC), having recently obtained his Ph.D. in the field from Simon Fraser University.

This talk presented a novel approach to generative music and Computer-Assisted Composition (CAC), which looks at music as a holistic phenomenon, arising from the integration of the perceptual and cognitive capacities of listeners. The central contribution of this research is an integrated cognitive architecture (ICA) for symbolic music learning and generation called MusiCog. Inspired by previous ICAs, MusiCog features a modular design, implementing functions for perception, working memory, long-term memory, and production/composition. Through the integrated approach, MusiCog constructs a representation of music informed by its perceptual and cognitive limitations. Thus, in a manner similar to human listeners, its knowledge of different musical works or styles is not equal or uniform, but is rather informed by the specific musical structure of the works themselves.

MusiCog’s production/composition module does not attempt to model explicit knowledge of music theory or composition. Rather, it proposes a “musically naïve” approach to composition, bound by the perceptual phenomena that inform its representation of musical structure, and the cognitive constraints that inform its capacity to articulate its knowledge through novel compositional output. Strengths and limitations—both of the conceptual approach and the specific implementation was discussed in the context of autonomous melodic generation and CAC, and avenues for future research was presented.

John Baker - Computer assistance in “symmetrical designs”: a special instance of algorithmic composition

John Baker, who has been composing music for the last 25 years and is an associate composer of the CMC, has a PhD and was an Assistant Professor in computer science at the U of Calgary and UBC before turning to composition. Recently he has been experimenting with musical forms derived from mathematical groups.

Computer assistance in “symmetrical designs”: a special instance of algorithmic composition. John sketched the formal symmetry in some of his recent compositions and outline his compositional practice in these cases, indicating the surprising role of spreadsheets.

Kevin Regamey, Creative Director and Riley Koenig, Lead composer, "Power Up Audio"

As a lifelong gamer and audiophile, Kevin's day-to-day work at Power Up comes as little surprise. Having played a contributing role in well over 200 projects (ranging casual, midcore and AAA), he brings a wealth of experience to the table regarding music, design, implementation, and voice-over. Kevin also designed and created the cult indie puzzler, “Phonopath”, which has received wide acclaim in the audio community. An ardent completionist off-hours, his gaming interests lie in speedrunning, glitch hunting, permanent death and unreasonably difficult achievements.

"Games have always played an important role in Riley's life, with Starcraft LAN parties being commonplace growing up. His initial fervour for music in games led him to Berklee College of Music and studying with Emmy award-winning composer, Hummie Mann. Riley now pursues a master of music in composition degree at the University of British Columbia, where he studies with three-time Juno nominated composer, Dr. Stephen Chatman. Credits include a host of games with Power Up, films with Green Earth Films Inc., productions with Theatre Encounter, documentaries with Feminist Frequency and ITF Film, and also a recent winner of the 2014 Jean Coulthard Reading Contest by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra."

Two presenters described challenges of writing for games and the process behind that.  Riley addressed basic question: How writing for games works - from concept art/direction, to composing, to implementation? Aspects of MIDI orchestration, looping, intensity levels, and hit point syncing techniques will be covered.  Kevin talked about sound design/voice acting in games.

Feel free to browse Power Up Audio.



Should you have any questions or are interested in finding out more about the VCMM, please use the form below. If you are looking to contact individuals associated with the VCMM, please visit their respective websites linked through the members section of this site.

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