News and Media

Premieres and Reunions at TIMARA Faculty Recital

TIMARA patch

February 22, 2018

On February 23rd, the TIMARA faculty will hold a performance of original works at 8 PM in Fairchild Chapel. The program features music by all four faculty members, including premieres of new compositions by Tom Lopez, Aurie Hsu, and Abby Aresty, with instrumentation ranging from live electronics to found objects, percussion instruments and prepared piano. This event marks Aresty's first performance as an official TIMARA faculty member since her hiring as Technical Director and Lecturer.

TIMARA Chair, Peter Swendsen, will reunite with bassoonist and Director of Conservatory Professional Development, Dana Jessen, to perform a collaborative piece from Jessen's album "Carve." The composition, entitled "Fireflies in Winter," has not been performed in Oberlin by the pair for two years. He notes that since then, Jessen has performed the composition across Europe and America, and that he looks forward to presenting it again on campus.


Stephan Moore shares industry insights

Stephan Moore

February 16, 2018

The first week of classes was especially busy for the TIMARA Department this semester!

On February 8th, sound artist Stephan Moore visited a combined group of TECH 204 Performance Technology Workshop students and TECH 202 Real-time Techniques students to deliver a lecture about his work. Moore teaches at the Sound Arts and Industries program at the Northwestern School of Communication.

As a past president of the American Society for Acoustic Ecology and member of the Wingspace Design Collective, Moore has led a career of diverse sonic pursuits. From six years spent touring with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company (2004-2010) to curation of several art installations across the globe and collaborative engagements with popular artists such as Animal Collective (2010), his experience in the world of art, music, and composition made for a lecture of great insight to the TIMARA community.


Eastman Presser returns

Eastman Presser

February 12, 2018

Oberlin alumnus and TIMARA graduate Eastman Presser ('14) will perform an original work entitled "Good Listener" tonight in Bibbins 237 at 8:30 PM. According to Presser, "Good Listener is one possible iteration of an ongoing practice that examines listening critically. It is an invitation to listen, in different ways, to different sounds, some of which might happen to be music. This partially improvised performance combines and borrows from live music, lectures, stand-up comedy, and installation to create an auditorium in which how we make meaning through listening is questioned."

Presser is currently studying Performance Practice as Research at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London, in pursuit of a Master of Fine Arts degree. His visit to Oberlin included a lecture to the collective TIMARA studio and to the TECH 204 Performance Technology Workshop class.


John Talbert retires

John Talbert

May 12, 2017

John Talbert began working at Oberlin during the summer of 1978 when the Ohio Scientific Instruments microcomputer was brand new. John has been instrumental in helping the TIMARA Department embrace every technological development since then: from reel-to-reel tape to MIDI and the DX7; from simple circuit design to Arduino programming and iOS apps; and everything in between. "That's what was so cool about the job," he says. "Every year it was a new job. Every year things changed."

Erich Burnett interviewed John recently, you can read more here.

You can also learn more about John's various projects on his personal site.

The photo above shows John in his studio circa 1989.


Hunter Brown wins Allen Strange Award

Hunter Brown

May 8, 2017

Hunter Brown '17 was awarded the Society for Electroacoustic Music in the United States' (SEAMUS) Allen Strange Award for "Best Composition by an Undergraduate Student" at the 2017. Brown's winning piece, "Bicorporal," is described in its program notes as "an interactive electroacoustic performance system that uses timbre and amplitude tracking to manipulate digital signal processing modules. This enables the performer to control all electronic components of the performance by simply playing the acoustic instruments." Brown's interests include free improvisation with percussion and electronics, audio-visual work, sound art, audio engineering, composition for dance, and machine learning. This summer Hunter will be working as a recording engineer at the Marlboro Music Festival and School, and in the fall he will be attending Dartmouth College to pursue a Master's Degree in Digital Musics. More information and works by Brown can be found on his website: www.hunterbrown.net.

Hunter appears in the photo above (on the right) receiving the award from Eli Fieldsteel at the SEAMUS Festival.


Sounds of TIMARA...Today!

Judy Jackson

April 19, 2017

Judy Jackson (18') is featured in this online article. She can't pick her favorite part of Oberlin Conservatory's TIMARA Department. She loves everything about it.

"I'm 100 percent adamant that it's the best major on campus," she says. "It's a really strong community with some really wonderful people. There's a good exchange of ideas that happens within the department."


Talbertronics Festival

festival brochure

March 3, 2017

The Talbertronics Festival is underway! Join us in our celebration of John Talbert and his nearly 4 decades of incredible work in the TIMARA Department. We are thrilled to have many guests on campus, including former faculty: Gary Lee Nelson, Lyn Goeringer and Joo Won Park; former students: Peter Blasser, Leif Shackelford, Travis Johns and Patrick Richardson.

We have a studio open house, two workshops, three lecture/demonstrations, and three concerts. The studios are buzzing today as folks set up their open house installations.

If you're nearby, please join us. If you're far away, drop John a message!


TIMARA releases vinyl

timara album cover

February 28, 2017

"Electroacoustic Music at Oberlin" was just released by Hanson Records. It features music by current and recent TIMARA students and faculty: Lyn Goeringer, Mitchell Herrmann, Sarah Snider, Evan Zierk, Matt Omahan, Paulus Van Horne, Charlie Abbott, Tom Lopez & Stephen Sloan.






Judy Jackson performs on the Alles Machine

January 30, 2017

The Alles Machine, also knows as the Bell Labs Digital Synthesizer, was built in the 1970's. This video recording features Laurie Spiegel in 1977.

Laurie Spiegel video In 1981, the instrument was donated to the TIMARA Department, although it was barely functioning and lay dormant till recently. TIMARA engineer, John Talbert, has repurposed the machine for future generations of TIMARA composers - thanks, John!




You can read more about John's creative technical work here:

Alles Machine article.













Will Johnson debuts on NPR "First Watch"

Fawn video

January 25, 2017

Will Johnson ('17) and Anne Malin Ringwalt released a new song under the name Fawn. "Good Earth" is from their new EP, Neither Dog Nor Car, and featured on his TIMARA Senior Recital last fall.




TIMARA at SEAMUS 2016

SEAMUS2016

March 14, 2016

Compositions by TIMARA majors Griffin Jennings and Mitchell Herrmann were selected for the 2016 Society for Electroacoustic Music in the United States (SEAMUS) National Conference, held this year at Georgia Southern University from February 11-13. Founded in 1984, SEAMUS is a non-profit national organization of composers, performers, and teachers of electroacoustic music representing every part of the country and virtually every musical style. The SEAMUS conference is the largest annual gathering of electroacoustic composers in the US. Selection for performance at the conference is highly competitive, and it is rare to be programmed as an undergraduate student.

Mitchell received a further honor at the conference when his piece was chosen as the 2016 winner of the Allen Strange Memorial Award, which celebrates the best undergraduate electroacoustic composition of the year. This is the ninth time the Strange Award has been presented and the fourth time it has gone to a TIMARA major from Oberlin.

TIMARA in Scotland

Christy Rose, Dan Karcher, and Joo Won Park in Scotland

January 15, 2016

Visiting Professor, Joo Won Park, traveled with TIMARA students Christy Rose (TIMARA and Cinema Studies) and Daniel Karcher (Composition and TIMARA) to the University of Aberdeen in Scotland during Winter Term. The three were invited by the music department of the University of Aberdeen for an exchange on the creative use of music technology.

Christy Rose demonstration in Scotland





They spent a week in January in the city of Aberdeen exploring the Scottish culture and technology, from old castles to modern concert halls. They met Scottish composers and music technologists and created new friendships by sharing their music and research. Christy and Dan also presented their recent music technology projects to Sonic Arts students and faculty at the University of Aberdeen.